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John Burbank Shuts Flagship Hedge Fund, Plans Launch Of Cryptocurrency Unit

The writing for John Burbank’s Passport Capital was on the wall back in August, when as we reported, in his latest letter to investors Burbank reported that at what was once a multi-billion fund, total firm assets at Passport had shrunk to just $900 million as of June 30 as a result of net outflows […]


How “Ghost Collateral” And “Yin-Yang” Property Deals Will Collapse China’s Credit Bubble

One lesson from the 2007-08 crisis was that the vast majority of financial market participants, never mind the general public, were unfamiliar with subprime mortgages until the crisis was underway. Even now, we doubt many have much understanding of repo, the divergence between LIBOR and Fed Funds from 9 August 2007 and Eurodollar liquidity. In […]


BIS Issues An Alert: Tightening “Paradoxically” Leading To Excessive Risk Taking; Reminds What Happened Last Time

Valuations in asset markets are “frothy” and investors are basking in the “light and warmth” of the “Goldilocks economy”, believing that nothing can upset a future of “sustained growth and low interest rates”. We observe a heavy dose sarcasm from the media briefing coinciding with the Bank for International Settlements’ (BIS) latest quarterly review. Specifically, […]


Signs Of A Market Top? This Pole Dancing Instructor Is Now A Bitcoin Guru

Pole dancing instructor Dee Heath built a successful fitness business in western Sydney teaching “stripper fitness” classes that seem to be in vogue among millennial women. But recently, Heath has discovered a new passion: Investing in digital currencies. Heath has spent $5,800 on Bitcoin since July and has more than tripled her investment. "Look, I […]


“It’s All One Single, Giant $22 Trillion Position”: How Market Risk Became Systemic Risk

As excerpted from Fasanara Capital’s “Positive Feedback Loops and Financial Instability: the blind spot of policymakers.” The next time a Fed chair or macroprudential regulator argues that “there is no leverage in the market”, send them this. QE and NIRP have two predominant effects on markets: (i) relentless up-trend in stocks and bonds (the ‘Trend […]


Elon Musk Pulls An ICO

By Chris at www.CapitalistExploits.at First up, this beauty received by one of the crew here at HMS Capitalist Exploits: Marketing an ICO… Killer! The Tesla ICO Speaking of ICOs, last week something amazing, breathtaking, and revolutionary happened. We had another ICO… the very first of its kind. An Initial Car Offering. Pundits said it was an unveiling of the […]


Positive Feedback Loops, Financial Instability, & The Blind Spot Of Policymakers

Authored by Francesco Filia of Fasanara Capital, “Learn how to see. Realize that everything connects to everything else.” – Leonardo da Vinci A Dangerous Market Structure is More Worrying than Expensive Asset Valuations and Record Debt Levels Macro-prudential regulations follow financial crises, rarely do they precede one. Even when evidence is abundant of systemic risks […]


Financial Times: Sell Bitcoin Because The Market Is About To Become “Civilized”

On 31 October 2017, we discussed the announcement that the CME Group was responding to client interest and launching a Bitcoin Futures contract before the end of this year. CME stated that the contract would be cash settled based on the CME CF Bitcoin Reference rate, a once-a-day reference rate of the US dollar Bitcoin […]


BOE Warns Weekly Fund Redemptions Of 1.3% Would Break Corporate Bond Market

The Bank of England has done some timely and truly eye-opening research into the resilience of corporate bond markets. The research is contained in the Bank of England Financial Stability Paper No.42 and is titled “Simulating stress across the financial system:  the resilience of corporate bond markets and the role of investment funds” by Yuliya […]


Why Australia’s Economy Is A House Of Cards

Authored by Matt Barrie via Medium.com, Co-authored with Craig Tindale. I recently watched the federal treasurer, Scott Morrison, proudly proclaim that Australia was in “surprisingly good shape”. Indeed, Australia has just snatched the world record from the Netherlands, achieving its 104th quarter of growth without a recession, making this achievement the longest streak for any […]


The “Other” Side of Asymmetry You Never Hear About

By Chris at www.CapitalistExploits.at Everyone’s heard of “The Big Short”. We’ve Hollywood to thank for that, and thank them I will. After all, who didn’t love Margot Robbie explaining how it all worked? Even Mrs. Chris liked her. Of course, our heroes correctly bet against these mortgage backed securities smoking piles of isht and now they […]


Kyle Bass Warns: Xi Has “Built The Chinese Economy On A Foundation Of Sand”

Earlier this week, Chinese leader Xi Jinping became the third ruler in the communist country’s history to have his named enshrined in its constitution – and the first to receive this honor while still alive. But as China celebrates its most popular, and most powerful, leader since at least Deng Xiaoping, Kyle Bass, hedge fund […]


CLOs – “Safe” CDOs – Are Booming Again

Last week we explained how junk bond managers were buying increasing amounts of equities to “juice” their portfolios and propel their funds higher in the performance rankings. While this struck us as a relatively recent development, the tried-and-trusted method of trading more risk for more yield is going gangbusters in the CLO (Collateralized Loan Obligations) […]


Goldman Is Allowing Its Clients To Bet On The Next Financial Crisis

Just over a decade ago, as the S&P was hitting all time highs and there was a line around the block of 30-some year old hedge fund managers, desperate to put other people’s money in various ultra risky investments just so they could pick a few excess bps of yield over Treasurys – a situation […]


“This Is The Craziest Mortgage Scheme I’ve Ever Seen”

Authored by Simon Black via SovereignMan.com, The Great Financial Crisis happened because Wall Street was financing homes for people who couldn’t afford them. Leading up to the GFC, there was a voracious appetite from investors for “AAA”-rated mortgage debt. So lenders would make lots of loans to subprime borrowers and sell them to Wall Street. […]