FREE NEWSLETTER: Econintersect sends a nightly newsletter highlighting news events of the day, and providing a summary of new articles posted on the website. Econintersect will not sell or pass your email address to others per our privacy policy. You can cancel this subscription at any time by selecting the unsubscribing link in the footer of each email.

20Mar2015 Pre-Market Commentary: Futures Up, Indicating Gap Up At The Opening, Oil Trending Down As Gold Trends Upward

Written by Gary

Today is Quad-Witching day and it should be memorable with good volume, which is good since there is virtually no macro data today to speak of. The futures are up over a half percentage point suggesting a solid gap up at the opening.

Gold is tending up and Brent is trending down on a day where there is no financial reporting and normally would be a quiet day.

Here is the current market situation from CNN Money

European markets are broadly higher today with shares in Germany leading the region. The DAX is up 1.12% while France's CAC 40 is up 0.52% and London's FTSE 100 is up 0.23%.

What Is Moving the Markets

Here are the headlines moving the markets.

Simon Property raises offer for Macerich to $95.50 a share

(Reuters) - Simon Property Group Inc , the No.1 U.S. mall owner, raised its offer for Macerich Co three days after its smaller rival rejected its earlier offer, adopted a poison pill and changed board structure to prevent a hostile takeover.

Tiffany's sales fall after five years on stronger dollar

(Reuters) - Upscale jeweler Tiffany & Co's quarterly sales fell for the first time in five years and are expected to decline further in the current quarter, hurt by the strong dollar.

Graco Fined for Delayed Reporting of Seat-Buckle Complaints

Graco has agreed to pay a $3 million fine for delayed reporting of consumer complaints about difficulty opening car seat buckles.

Australia signals approval of China-based AIIB; Japan divided

TOKYO/SYDNEY (Reuters) - Australia said on Friday there was a lot of merit in the China-led Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) while Japan's finance minister signalled cautious approval of the institution that the United States has warned against.

As "Spectacular" Eclipse Covers Europe, Fears Turn To Its Power Grid

Some parts of Europe witnessed a near total solar eclipse this morning, an event which, while fun to observe (not without the proper equipment please), presents a challenge for solar panels: namely, a lack of sun. As it turns out this same problem happens at night but, as WSJ reports, the rapidity with which an eclipse darkens the earth could cause blackouts if the energy grid can't tack up the slack quick enough. Here's more:

The solar eclipse will provide an acid test for a continent that has placed a big bet on renewable energyâ€"but whose aging electricity grids could buckle under the strain of a sudden drop in solar power.

"Given the growth of renewables across Europe in recent years, this will require an unprecedented amount of careful balancing of supply and demand across the grid," said Valentin de Miguel of consulting firm Accenture...

The partial disappearance of the sun Friday will place a huge strain on Europe's energy system. Normally, when the sun goes down, it takes about an hour for the light to fade. That gives time for electricity grids to substitute the power flowing from solar panels with electricity generated from traditional sources such as coal and natural gas.

An eclipse blocks the sun in just a few minutes, though, leading to a potential sudden drop of up to 35,000 megawatts of generation capacity. That is the equivalent of about 20 large coal-fired power plants coming off the grid at the same time. Conventional electricity suppliers will have to seamlessly substitute power to prevent blackouts, and then they must shut down capacity ...

Paul Tudor Jones Warns This "Disastrous Market Mania" Will End "By Revolution, Taxes, Or War"

"This gap between the 1% and the rest of America, and between the US and the rest of the world, cannot and will not persist," warns renowned trader Paul Tudor Jones during his recent TED Talks speech, as he addressed the question - can capital be just? Hoping to expand the "narrow definitions of capitalism," that threaten the underpinnings of society, Tudor Jones exclaims, "we're in the middle of a disastrous market mania," adding "one of worst of my life." Perhaps most ominously, he concludes, historically this ends "by revolution, higher taxes or wars. None are on my bucket list."

As TED blog reports,

Can capital be just? As a firm believer in capitalism and the free market, Paul Tudor Jones II believes that it can be. Tudor is the founder of the Tudor Investment Corporation and the Tudor Group, which trade in the fixed-income, equity, currency and commodity markets. He thinks it is time to expand the "narrow definitions of capitalism" that threaten the underpinnings of our society and develop a new model for corporate profit that includes justness and responsibility.

It's a good time for companies: in the US, corporate revenues are at their highest point in 40 years. The problem, Tudor points out, is that as profit margins grow, so does income inequality. And income inequality is closely linked to lower life expectancy, literacy and math proficiency, infant mortality, h ...

Wall Street stock futures rise after pullback

(Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures climbed on Friday after a one-day pullback as investors were reassured by a reform pledge by Greece to its EU creditors that could help avert a cash crunch.

Frontrunning: March 20

Dollar Set for Worst Week Since '13; S&P Futures Rise (BBG)

Shale Producers Have Found Another Lifeline: Shareholders (BBG)

BOJ Kuroda says no sign of 'currency war' brewing in world (Reuters)

Fed Is Pushing and Pulling on Rates Riddle (WSJ

Brent oil falls towards $54 on OPEC output, Iran (Reuters)

Iran Talks Stall Over Ending of Sanctions (WSJ)

Credit Suisse Faces Italy Suit, Probe as Litigation Persists (BBG)

Wages Haven't Been This Crucial to U.S. Economy in Half Century (< ...

The Gesture That Turned a Fiscal Crisis Into Twitter Fodder or Did It?

A media frenzy ensued in Germany over a video showing Greece's finance minister flipping his middle finger, a video some now claim to have faked.

Jaguar Land Rover recalls 36,000 SUVs in China after media exposé

SHANGHAI (Reuters) - Jaguar Land Rover Ltd on Friday said it is recalling nearly 36,500 Range Rover Evoque sport utility vehicles (SUVs), after local media reported the British luxury carmaker used faulty gearboxes.

Greek PM assures EU creditors reforms coming to unlock cash

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Greece said on Friday it was moving swiftly to meet creditors' demands for a detailed economic reform plan after Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras assured euro zone leaders his leftist-led coalition would speed up work to avert bankruptcy.

Calm Ahead Of Today's Quad-Witching Which May Lead To Vol Surge

Quad-witching days are volatile on normal days, so in an environment of virtually zero liquidity, in which the market careens from one extreme to another simply based on whether the Fed utters one single word, in which volatility across asset classes is soaring, and in which it is all about igniting algo momentum, today's quadruple withicng should be memorable, which is good since there is virtually no macro data today to speak of.

Here are the specfici times for today's expiries:

SMI March'15 Options & Futures Expiry (0800GMT/0300CDT)

FTSE 100 March'15 Options & Futures Expiry (1015GMT/0515CDT)

EUROSTOXX March'15 Options & Futures Expiry (1100GMT/0600CDT)

DAX March'15 Option & Futures Expiry (1200GMT/0700CDT)

CAC 40 March'15 Options & Futures Expiry (1500GMT/1000CDT)

e-Mini DOW/ e-Mini NASDAQ & S&P March'15 Options & Futures Expiry (1330GMT/0830CDT)

T-Note March'15 Futures Expiry (1701GMT/1201CDT)

As Nanex reminds us, during last year's quad witching on March 21, 2014, at 15:45:00, a new record was set for most trades in 1 second in NMS stocks (NYSE, NY-ARCA, NY-MKT and Nasdaq listed stocks and ETFs - approximately 8,000 symbols). The 3rd and 4th most active seconds were also set, at 15:50:00 and 15:55:00 respectively. The 2nd most active second was set at 10:00:00 on September 1, 2011. Today may surpass it.

If quad witching proves to be a dud, then there is always Europe's partial solar eclipse to fall back on: an eclipse which may ...

Sabadell eyes more UK deals after $2.5 billion TSB takeover

LONDON/MADRID (Reuters) - Spain's Banco Sabadell could look to expand further in Britain after agreeing a 1.7 billion pound ($2.5 billion) takeover of TSB , one of the biggest cross-border banking deals since the financial crisis of 2007-09.

Holcim and Lafarge revise terms to get merger back on track

PARIS/ZURICH (Reuters) - Switzerland's Holcim and France's Lafarge have agreed new terms for their plan to create the world's biggest cement company, giving unhappy shareholders in the Swiss firm a better deal.

Athens pledge, cautious Fed soothes Europe's investors

LONDON (Reuters) - The euro nudged towards its best week in 18 months while yields on low-rated bonds fell as investors welcomed the Fed's cautious approach to raising interest rates and a reform pledge from Athens that could avert a cash crunch.

Russia's Putin calls for regional currency union

ALMATY (Reuters) - Russian President Vladimir Putin told the leader of Belarus and Kazakhstan on Friday their three countries should consider forming a common currency union.

Sinosphere Blog: Hackers Attack, a Workaround for Websites Censored in China

Unidentified hackers have attacked, a website that provides access to news websites blocked by China.

Brent oil falls towards $54 on OPEC output, Iran

LONDON (Reuters) - Brent crude oil fell towards $54 a barrel on Friday and was on track for its third straight weekly loss, hurt by oversupply worries after Kuwait said OPEC had no choice but to maintain output levels.

Ukraine's Naftogaz transfers $15 million in gas prepayment to Gazprom

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Ukraine's state gas company Naftogaz said on Friday that it had paid $15 million to Russia's Gazprom for March gas supplies, Naftogaz said on Friday.

Biogen Reports Its Alzheimer's Drug Sharply Slowed Cognitive Decline

The drug, developed by Biogen Idec, could achieve sales of billions of dollars a year if the results from the small trial are replicated in larger trials.

At Kodak, Clinging to a Future Beyond Film

What happens when a tech company is left for dead but the people left behind refuse to give up? At Kodak, the answer is to mine its patents for gold.

Brazil's Slumping Economy and Bribery Scandal Eat Away at Dilma Rousseff's Popularity

President Rousseff is fighting for her political survival, as her approval rating falls and the national oil company she once oversaw reels from a corruption scandal.

Cement Giants Holcim and Lafarge Say Merger Is Back on Track

The companies said they had revised the terms in a way that sweetens the deal for Holcim shareholders and agreed that Bruno Lafont, the Lafarge chief, would step aside.

Ex-Soviet states battle challenge of low oil prices

ASTANA (Reuters) - The three main members of the Russian-led Eurasian Economic Union face a big economic challenge from the fall in global oil prices, Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev said on Friday.

UBS Expands Its U.S. Oil Banking Team To Make The Most Of Low Oil Price Environment

With oil prices plummeting over recent months, earnings figures across the energy sector have taken a significant hit â€" forcing oil and gas companies to explore ways to raise cash for day-to-day operations externally. UBS is clearly looking to tap into this demand by leveraging the newly added team, as it stands to gain from the existing situation on two fronts. Firstly, the team will beef up the services offered by UBS's reserve-based lending unit in Dallas.

Who Should Take Social Security Early?

Taking Social Security early requires some careful decisionmaking. You'll need to ask several questions.

TSB agrees to 1.7 billion pounds takeover by Spain's Sabadell

LONDON/MADRID (Reuters) - British bank TSB has agreed to a 1.7 billion pounds takeover by Spanish lender Banco Sabadell in one of the biggest cross-border banking deals since the financial crisis of 2007-9.

Epoch of Belief, Epoch of Incredulity (9): Comfort Zones

Written by Adam Whitehead,

Global growth suddenly hit the brakes in February this year. Presumably the FOMC is fully aware of this; which is why the last minutes were so full of caution despite all the bravado in relation to a June rate increase. The view taken in Epoch of Belief, Epoch of Incredulity (8) "Hedgehogging One's Bets" was that this bravado is a function of the threat to the Fed's independence from Rand Paul's proposed audit.

Earnings Summary for Today

Earnings Calendar provided by

leading Stock Positions

Leading Stock Quotes powered by

Current Commodity Prices

Commodities are powered by

Current Currency Crosses

The Forex Quotes are powered by

To contact me with questions, comments or constructive criticism is always encouraged and appreciated:

Click here for Historical Releases Listing

Make a Comment

Econintersect wants your comments, data and opinion on the articles posted.  As the internet is a "war zone" of trolls, hackers and spammers - Econintersect must balance its defences against ease of commenting.  We have joined with Livefyre to manage our comment streams.

To comment, using Livefyre just click the "Sign In" button at the top-left corner of the comment box below. You can create a commenting account using your favorite social network such as Twitter, Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn or Open ID - or open a Livefyre account using your email address.

You can also comment using Facebook directly using he comment block below.

Econintersect Live Market


Print this page or create a PDF file of this page
Print Friendly and PDF

The growing use of ad blocking software is creating a shortfall in covering our fixed expenses. Please consider a donation to Econintersect to allow continuing output of quality and balanced financial and economic news and analysis.

Take a look at what is going on inside of
Main Home
Analysis Blog
Comments on Feyerabend’s ‘Against Method’, Part II
Comments on Feyerabend’s ‘Against Method’, Part III
News Blog
Mom Breaks Down In Tears When Son With Autism Meets Service Dog
Rail Week Ending 15 October 2016 Paints A Negative Economic View
What Is The New Normal For U.S. Growth?
Affordable Care Act And Its Effect On Part-Time Employment
The Speed Of Filling Jobs Is Declining
First Working Eggs Made From Stem Cells Points To Fertility Breakthrough
Infographic Of The Day: Mega Machines
Online Platforms Double Down On TV Programming
A History Of Mars Missions
How Tesla Out Innovates Traditional Carmakers
Schiaparelli's Descent To Mars In Real Time
September 2016 Existing Home Sales Still Not Excellent
September 2016 Leading Economic Index Improves Indicating Moderate Growth Ahead.
Investing Blog
Options Early Assignment - Should You Worry?
The 401k Plan Manager 17 October 2016
Opinion Blog
Prop. 51 Versus A State-Owned Bank: How California Can Save $10 Billion On A $9 Billion Loan
Obama's Middle East Policy Has Been A Complete Failure - Or Has It?
Precious Metals Blog
How Will The Election Outcome Impact Precious Metals?
Live Markets
21Oct2016 Market Close: Major US Indexes Close Flat On Low Volume, Crude Prices Resume Climb, US Dollar Stabilizes In Mid 98 Handle, Yes, Most Investors Are Worried Which Way This Market Will Go
Amazon Books & More

.... and keep up with economic news using our dynamic economic newspapers with the largest international coverage on the internet
Asia / Pacific
Middle East / Africa
USA Government

Crowdfunding ....



Analysis Blog
News Blog
Investing Blog
Opinion Blog
Precious Metals Blog
Markets Blog
Video of the Day


Asia / Pacific
Middle East / Africa
USA Government

RSS Feeds / Social Media

Combined Econintersect Feed

Free Newsletter

Marketplace - Books & More

Economic Forecast

Content Contribution



  Top Economics Site Contributor TalkMarkets Contributor Finance Blogs Free PageRank Checker Active Search Results Google+

This Web Page by Steven Hansen ---- Copyright 2010 - 2016 Econintersect LLC - all rights reserved