Grant Williams's picture

The advent of ‘portfolio’ or ‘program’ trading which became popular in the late 1970s and early 1980s, allowed managers to trade an entire portfolio (which often consisted of every stock in the S&P500) by placing a single order with a brokerage house. The launch of an S&P500 futures contract on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange had provided an arbitrage between stock and futures and Exchanges For Physical (EFPs) allowed for positions in stocks to be exchanged simply and easily for positions in futures contracts.

John Butler's picture

Already on the defensive due to a persistent failure to achieve its stated policy aims, the US Fed was subject to much fresh criticism over the past week, including from the BRIC nations, collectively the largest foreign holders of US dollar reserves.

Julian Phillips's picture

Right now there are ongoing discussions between the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) countries over their use of the SWIFT system of international settlements as a ‘weapon’ against Iran.

John Rubino's picture

One of the problems with the debate over the “national debt” is that there’s no generally agreed upon definition of that term. Is it what the federal government owes, or what it owes foreigners, or what the whole country, private and public sector together, owes? Does it include off-balance-sheet items and contingent liabilities?

David Kotok's picture

The global financial crisis has ushered in a new way of thinking that will most likely never reverse. Previously, when crises erupted, the government would step in temporarily and then let the private sector resume course.

Jim Rickards's picture

The principal victims of the Fed’s policies are those at or near retirement who face a Hobson’s Choice of gambling in the stock market or getting nothing at all. A summary of these deleterious effects on retirement income security, explained in more detail below, includes the following:

Lee Adler's picture

The longer term direction of the indicator composite suggests that the stock market should continue to have a bullish tilt, while Treasuries, which are over-owned and still long term overbought, may continue to get hammered intermittently. All of the liquidity flows could be focused on stocks and commodities while the Treasury market sees occasional selling.

JR Nyquist's picture

I continue my interview with Anca-Maria Cernea, a citizen of Romania who knows what it means to live under Communism. Both Cernea’s parents were imprisoned by the Communists. Her father served 17 years as a political prisoner. After 1989, she was active in the National Peasant Christian Democratic Party.

Cris Sheridan's picture

There are two major trends taking place that are shaping up as a recipe for disaster. On the one hand, we have massively indebted governments around the world desperate for tax revenues and, on the other, steadily growing multi-trillion underground economies whose main goal is to avoid paying them.

Chris Puplava's picture

Technology and financials are currently overbought, as is the general market, and we are likely to experience a pullback or consolidation in Q2. However, given the level of internal strength, it does not appear the market is setting up for any major declines. Therefore, until we start to see broad-based deterioration in the market (and especially in these two sectors), any weakness into Q2 should be viewed as a buying opportunity.