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  • Tag Archives CDS
  • JP Morgan’s $2 Billion Loss Possibly Indicative of Bigger Problems Behind the Scenes

    Posted on by JonK Comment

    Update May 16, 2012: In contrast with Jim Willie’s speculation below, a much more renowned Jim Rickards has a much more probable thesis on the JP Morgan loss. The trade was actually a bet on the spread between the bond index and the bonds themselves. Time ran out, resulting in the loss. Read about it at USNews.

    Here’s an interview with Jim Willie (TheGoldenJackass) discussing his speculation on what’s really going on regarding JP Morgan’s $2 billion dollar ‘whale trader’ loss.  Jim speculates that JPM’s declaration that it involved European bond investments that have gone bad doesn’t make sense because in the last 6 weeks those bonds haven’t changed so much to warrant such huge losses. More likely, according to Jim, is that these losses are much larger and they reflect losses in the credit derivatives markets. Furthermore, eastern nations like China are likely causing the rout in precious metals because they’re forcing the western commercial banks to sell to cover these losses in the derivatives markets.

  • 5 US Banks Control 97% of CDS Contracts

    In this interview with Jim Sinclair, the Credit Default Swap (CDS) market is thoroughly discussed.  There are 5 major banks that control almost all of the CDS contracts issued. These 5 banks also heavily influence the International Swaps and Derivatives Association (ISDA), which will decide whether defaults actually occur when the sovereign nations of Europe don’t pay their creditors.  For example, when Greece was allowed to free themselves of 50% of their debt recently, the ISDA decided that was NOT a default, hence the CDS contracts the 5 major banks issued were not triggered.  Those that bought the CDS contracts were screwed.  And now the ISDA is deciding whether or not the current 70% haircut being imposed on Greek bond holders is a default.  Obviously, the ‘self-governing’ CDS market is not going to shoot themselves, so the CDS purchasers are going to be screwed again!

    Sinclair points out that this credit event is signaling global quantitative easing because if Greece and the other sovereign nations can keep selling bonds without the obligation to pay back creditors, bond buyers will get wise to the scheme and not purchase. QE will therefore be necessary – money will be created out of thin air to buy the bonds no one wants to buy.  This will support much higher prices for precious metals and general equities.

    March 2, 2012 update: Sure enough, the ISDA has just declared that no Greek ‘credit event’ occurred.  So, why the hell would any institution invest in CDS insurance anyway?  That’s a good question that many are now asking.

    March 9, 2012 update: In a surprising twist of events, the ISDA is now claiming that a credit event has occured and will result in a CDS payout of about $3.5 billion. Although Jim Sinclair suggests that the payout amount is actually going to involve much more than that, given the outstanding number of Greece-based CDS contracts.

  • Dangerous Derivatives

    The Changing World of Investing
    Dangerous Derivatives

    September 5, 2011

    The investing world is undergoing quite a dramatic change. Professional traders and investors have been doing their thing over the past 40 or so years using mostly vehicles in the bond market (securities), stock market (equities) and realestate arenas. The so-called hard assets traded in the commodity markets have mostly been used by legitimate industries in order to hedge their losses in case of temporary, unforeseen economic hiccups.

    But now, especially over the past decade, the derivatives market has become an estimated $600 trillion dollar market! No one really knows just how big this market is because there are so many different types of derivatives – and even derivatives of derivatives. And, if you recall, the MBS (Mortgage-Backed Securities) that were packaged up into different investment portfolios and marketed and sold to unsuspecting investors is the particular brand of derivative at the root of the 2008 financial crisis.

    But derivatives are not limited to MBS. Financial wizards on Wall Street have mathematically tied pooled investments to Realestate, Bonds, Equities, Futures and Options in order to bring their clients specific opportunites, tailored to their needs. These investment vehicles have gotton so complex and yet so unregulated, it is just a matter of time before this bomb explodes. The 2008 crisis will look like a small ripple on a quiet pond when this next one hits.

    In the late 1990′s, Brooksley Born, then chairman of the CFTC, warned about the potential threat to the economic system the unregulated derivatives market posed. But the insiders controlling the banking system, not to mention the political leaders in Washington, wouldn’t listen – nay, they even acted to supress her warnings. The derivatives market was making them too much money and they were not about to give that up.

    Fast forward to today and we’ve recently witnessed our illustrious politicians as they’ve recognized the dangers that are still out there. They passed the Dodd-Frank bill into law. This is a bold and comprehensive set of measures, one of which seeks to regulate this dangerous derivatives market.

    But the big banking institutions have been lobbying heavily to slow the implementation of Dodd-Frank. In fact, in the first 6 months of 2011, the financial industry has spent over $100 million campaigning to delay or water-down these regulations. Why? Two reasons: One is because it’s a racketeering industry making a lot of money for a select few; And two, because it’s so complex that it cannot even begin to be explained in any rational manner, thus impossible to regulate.

    It’s a house of cards waiting to implode. And when it does, look out. If you’re not holding hard assets like gold and silver in your hands, you’ll be in big trouble because all those derivatives contracts are denominated in a fiat currency – for the U.S., it’s dollars.

    Both sides of the trade (buyers and sellers) settle the trade in cash. When (not if) the major defaults come, the sellers won’t be able to cover. That will kick in yet more derivatives action – that of the CDS (Credit Default Swap) derivatives market. And when that happens, the major players won’t be able to cover those either.

    Massive defaults will lead to yet another bail-out of major financial institutions. The inflation of the money supply necessary for these bail-outs will exceed anything we’ve seen before. This is a crash of truly epic proportions!

    You will want to have something of value in your hands in order to trade anything because the fiat currencies will not be worth the paper on which they’re printed. Gold and Silver will be the preferred currencies.

    So be sure you have your ounce(s) of gold or silver!!!

    Contact the author of this article by sending an email to: Jon K

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