Tag Archives: Minsky Moment

Mining Stocks Are Setting Up For Another Run

The Fed is trapped.  If it stops adding money to the money supply, the stock market will crash.  It’s already extended the repo money printing program twice. The first extension was to February and now it has extended it again to April.

What was billed as a temporary “liquidity problem” in the overnight repo market is instead significant problems developing in the credit and derivative markets to an extent that it appears to be putting Too Big To Fail bank balance sheets in harm’s way.  That’s my analysis – the official narrative is that “there’s nothing to see there”.

The delinquency and default rates for below investment grade corporate debt  (junk bonds) and for subprime consumer debt are soaring.   Privately funded credit,  leveraged bank loans,  CLO’s and subprime asset-backed trusts (credit cards, ABS, CMBS)  are starting to melt down. The repo money printing operations is a direct bail out of leveraged funds, mezzanine funds and banks, which are loaded up  on those subprime credit structures.    Not only that,  but  a not insignificant amount of OTC credit default derivatives is “wrapped around” those finance vehicles, which further accelerates the inevitable credit meltdown “Minsky Moment.”

The point here is that I am almost certain, and a growing number of truth-seeking analysts are coming to the same conclusion, that by April the Fed will once again extend and expand the repo operations. As Milton Friedman said, “nothing is so permanent as a temporary government program.”

Gold will sniff this out, just like it sniffed out the September repo implementation at the beginning of June 2019.  I think there’s a good chance that gold will be trading above $1600 by this June, if not sooner.

Eventually the market will discover the junior exploration stocks and the share prices will be off to the races. This is part of the reason Eric Sprott continues to invest aggressively in the companies he considers to have the highest probability of getting enough “wood on the ball to knock the ball out of the park” (sorry, baseball is right around the corner).

Precious metals mining stocks are exceptionally cheap  relative to the price of gold (and silver).   Many of the junior exploration stocks  have sold down to historically cheap levels  in the latest pullback in the sector.   As such, this is a good opportunity to add to existing positions in these names or to start a new position.

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In my latest issue of the Mining Stock Journal, I present a penny stock idea that I believe could be a 5-10 bagger.  I’m not alone in this view because a royalty company I know and respect recently took a 9.5% position in the company’s stocks and purchased a royalty stream on several of the company’s mining claims.  You can learn more about this mining stock newsletter here:   Mining Stock Journal information.

NOTE: I do not receive compensation from any mining stock companies and I do not accept any precious metals industry sponsors. My research and my views are my own and I invest my own money in many of the stocks I present.

Let’s Have Lunch With The Mad Hatter

I’m trying to free your mind.  But I can only show you the door.  You’re the one who has to walk through it.   – The Matrix

The overnight computerized stock market futures trading systems mysteriously “broke” once again as the futures were heading south (see this and this).   This  glaringly overt intervention reeks unmistakably of desperation.

Corners of the global economy – and specifically the U.S. – are collapsing behind the smoke and mirror cloak of ebullience emanating from a sharp bear market dead-cat stock market bounce and from absurdly manipulated data reports on employment and housing.

I was looking at a daily graph of AIG earlier today and comparing it to a couple other insurance company stock charts (Allstate and Progressive).   Contrary  to other insurance Untitledstocks, AIG has not participated at all in this stock market bounce.  In fact, it’s been hitting new 52-week lows almost everyday since early February.

The same problems that caused a temporary systemic collapse in 2008 are back in full force again.  Only they are much larger and much more insidious because rules were changed in a way that enabled the big financial firms to better disguise their Ponzi schemes.   AIG is the born-again poster-child of this evolving financialized nuclear melt-down.   I was chatting with a colleague earlier who told me that a  contact of his at the Company said that everyone who stayed on at AIG after 2008 are now being let go. Something ominous is going on there…

The Kansas City Fed survey reported today that its index has dropped to 7-year lows.  Yes, the Government reported today a bounce in durable goods, but it was driven by a huge order for aircraft parts from the Dept of Defense (great, we’re preparing for war in the Middle East).  Here’s what the real economy looks like:

Untitled While the Government insults our collective intelligence with tall tales of 5% unemployment and Janet Reno Yellen lobbies the public on the view the economy is improving, the actual numbers coming from Main Steet show an economy slipping into recession. Treasury yields continue to compress. This is not the signal that it’s time to take out a 100% mortgage from a private lender and overpay for a crappy house, it’s the unmistakable onset of economic collapse.

Today both Dominos Pizza (12%) up and Lending Tree (up 22%)  spiked up after “beating” their earnings.  Here’s what was missed in the reporting:  Dominos trades at 16x EBITDA and Lending Tree trades at 25x EBITDA.  This is sheer insanity.  Oh, by the way, TREE’s trailing EBIDTA is “adjusted,” which means EBITDA  after the financial Kreskins at the Company add back all of the recurring “non-recurring” expenses.

It’s incomprehensible the way the market can ignore the bad news piling up.  JP Morgan admitted earlier this week that it is woefully under-reserved against defaulting energy loans it was unable to unload onto the market.  Bloomberg News featured a story today which reports that “the biggest wave of oil defaults looms as the bust intensifies” – LINK.   I think this is already becoming a hidden problem in the financial system and it explains why we seeing financial firms like AIG (credit default swap issuer) and DB (lender to defaulting energy companies) not participating in this bear market bounce.

We know that the middle class is running out of money – “more subprime borrowers are falling behind on their auto loans”  and “Retail Apocalypse: Major US Chains Closing 6,000 Stores Nationwide” – but Restoration Hardware yesterday told us that upscale shoppers have stopped spending money now as well.

The “Minsky Moment” occurs when too much borrowed money has fueled too much asset valuation speculation.  The market will no longer absorb increasing levels of debt and the current borrowers can no longer support what’s already been borrowed.  A severe collapse in asset values ensues.

In early 2015 the Government allowed Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to offer 3% down payment mortgages.  This is because the system had run out of borrowers capable of taking down a 5% mortgage.  Later in the year the Government began offering a zero-percent down payment program.   Private, non-Government pools of capital are offering  reconstituted versions of the type of mortgages which led the collapse in 2008.  The mortgage market is now searching for the last non-mortgaged stragglers who can still fog a mirror and are willing to overpay for a chance at the American dream.

Currently we are seeing the Minsky Moment swarm the energy market and begin to engulf the auto loan market.  Soon it will start creeping into the housing mortgage market.  The gerbil is almost dead but it’s still making the wheel spins albeit slowly.  Not surprisingly the stock market is looking at the gerbil as it dies and interpreting any sign of life as a reason to party on…