Marriott Hotels hacked AGAIN: Two compromised employee logins abused to siphon off 5.2m guests' personal info

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How many customers' deets? It's not saying just yet

Updated  Marriott Hotels has suffered its second data spillage in as many years after an "unexpected amount" of guests' data was accessed through two compromised employee logins, the under-fire chain has confirmed.…


Let's get digital... digital: Microsoft Ignite switches to online-only as 2020's tech calendar clears

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2021 looking ever more virtual and distant. Did March feel like a year for you too?

Microsoft has switched its September Ignite event to a digital affair even as other organisers hope for a return to some semblance of "normal" by August.…


Blain: "What To Worry About Next..."

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Blain: "What To Worry About Next..."

Authored by Bill Blain via MorningPorridge.com,

Long-held investment equations are all changing. The laws of financial physics are not as unchanging as we think. 

What to worry about next...

I got a call from a Swiss Broker chum y’day telling me they see a rise in demand for TIPs – Inflat

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ion Linked bonds. Although I’m not seeing any significant action in the inflation linked ETFs I watch, it makes sense to keep a weather eye on inflation: the global economy isn’t actually producing anything much, but we are still buying lots of stuff. If demand exceeds supply – that pushes prices higher = inflation. 

You could argue that no one is earning any money, therefore can’t spend anything, that’s deflationary – but we just created billions of billions of cash. The real issue is where all that ersatz cash actually goes. 

Last time we did that - 8 years of the experimental madness of QE - the result was massive inflation in financial assets, even as contradictory austerity policies in the real economy cut services. Money that would have been directed to building industrial and service capacity, therefore increasing productivity, and raising consumer wages, was siphoned off into financial assets, meaning we got deflation instead.. Too many goods were chasing consumers with stressed wallets whose real incomes tumbled for 10 years. 

This time we’re talking about Helicopter money in some economies, and paying wages of otherwise unemployed workers in others by nationalising payrolls. It might just work this time and generate inflation...

Well, at least the ECB will be happy.

They should be careful what they wish for... Inflation – for those of you too young to remember – is a vicious and unpredictable bounder, destroying savings, and financial asset values. 

If goods are in short supply then prices will rise through the mechanism of the market. 


Governments can chose to avoid riots, and ration goods and services through legislation.

I am sure there will be many politicians thinking rationing will not be an issue…  they’ve already done just about everything else… How long before we get food stamps entitling us to a rasher of bacon a month, a pound of lard and a packet of dehydrated mashed potato from the Government emergency stocks? 

It begs a wider question. Where does government stop? When Jeremy Corbyn called for the nationalisation of the railways a few months ago we fulminated at his socialist communistic insanity. The government did it the week before last, and nobody even noticed. 

Or Victor Orban promising to hand back power when the crisis is over. Sure. We know how that ends... although the inhabitants of the US city of Cincinnati could tell us the story of about the only example of a politician voluntarily laying down power. 

Global Risk Sentiment – Stressed! 

I read a very interesting report y’day – The Crisis Sentiment Index (CSI) produced by the Directors and Chief Risk Officers group (DCRO). The CSI has been reactivated for the Covid-19 crisis. They surveyed over 200 CROs at leading investment firms. The higher the number from 0-100 the worse the crisis. Their current number is 68 – “indicating substantial stresses”.(No Sh*t Sherlock award winging its way to them.) 

  • 64% expect a 50% change of Global Depression with GDP falling 15%

  • 64% are planning for significant disruptions in activity for 6 months or more.

  • 93% believe there is 50% change of material unrealised global impact

  • 10% believe it is likely the Pandemic will be under control within 3 months. 

Interesting snapshots from the survey include: 

“We are engaging with our people and teams to assess emotional resiliency – which has not been considered in prior planning.” 

While China talks about recovery, a North American exec said: “for my industry, the estimate is for a 40% decline in global revenue for 2020.”

An Asian manager commented how China, Taiwan and Singapore have dealt with it through a combination of “social controls, social action and top-quality medical careavailable to all. The danger is re-contagion from the West where there is little social discipline and regressive health care systems.”

Bigger Changes are Coming

That last comment from Asia is particularly interesting, highlighting the increasing divide between the Occident and Orient in terms of society. Socialised or liberal?  

Let me pose a question: 

What is the difference between the state threatening to jail a doctor for complaining about the lack of preparedness to address a new disease, and a medical company threatening to dismiss and prosecute staff who go on social media to reveal the lack of protective gear in stressed hospitals? 

I’d like to hope voters will eventually look back on the crisis and fundamentally assess just how well their elected representatives did. But you know that’s unlikely to happen. But maybe politicians will be smart enough to refocus priorities – perhaps its time to rebalance western economies… National Heathcare that’s properly acknowledged as the primary public good would be a great start. (And that’s going to be a massive investment opportunity!)

Because it made me laugh out loud, I’d like to finish by pinching a line from the daily blog of my old chum Ara Levonian at BGC:

 “The US look all over the place in a coordinated response to the pandemic and the Trump administration is coming unstuck due to its lack of attention to detail. The problem is the administration seems to consist of 4 men, 2 of whom do not really believe in science.

Tyler Durden

Wed, 04/01/2020 - 11:50

Sweden Begins to Abandon Liberal Coronavirus Approach as Deaths Surge

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More fatalities than Denmark, Norway & Finland combined.

Domestic Abuse Calls Soar As Nationwide Lockdown Extends

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Domestic Abuse Calls Soar As Nationwide Lockdown Extends

Across California, high unemployment and crashed economic activity are starting to pressure households as tens of millions of people have been forced by the government to "shelter in place" amid the COVID-19 outbreak. 

A frightening new reality is starting to develop, one where households are becoming fractured because of the stress related to the virus outbreak. Many are experiencing job

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loss, limited savings, insurmountable debts, and or alcohol or drug abuse problems to cope with the financial pain as the economy dives into a depression in the second quarter. As a result of this unbearable stress, domestic abuse calls have skyrocketed in Sacramento, California, reported CBS13 Sacramento.

"Right now as we speak, one in five women are being assaulted, right here in Sacramento County," said Donna Brown, an employee at A Community Peace organization that helps victims of domestic violence. "It puts most of the abusers in the home with the family more frequently than usual."

Brown said she had seen a massive influx in the number of domestic violence calls in the last several weeks. 

"Abusers that are maybe not going to work or the victims aren't going to work and the children are home, or there's a loss of income so it's just a pressure cooking the environment that they're in," said Incoming Executive Director Laura Clegg.

CBS13 called several county and state resources that would typically help victims, and some were operating on limited schedules and or others were entirely closed. Since the shutdowns began, the Victims of Crime Resource Center in Sacramento recorded a 40% jump in domestic violence calls across the county. 

Cracking households suggest that the onset of social unrest is on the horizon. This is a huge concern for the Trump administration, who is attempting to dish out hundreds of billions of dollars in universal basic income in the next several weeks to prevent protests and riots. 

We noted last Friday that the Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies warned that social unrest could unfold across major Western cities in the weeks ahead. 

Americans should be deeply disturbed about the near-total meltdown of normal life – the unraveling's of the economy and social fabric could quickly result in protests. Stress starts at work, then transmits into the household, with millions out of work, households breaking down, it is becoming increasingly clear that a perfect storm of social destabilization is nearing. 

Down the coast in Los Angeles, more specifically in Beverly Hills, high-end stores have boarded up their windows and doors in anticipation of civil unrest.

In Beverly Hills, the Pottery Barn and West Elm stores near Rodeo Drive were spotted with boards across the windows.

Meanwhile, stores in New York, San Francisco, Seattle, Chicago, Paris, Vancouver, and elsewhere were similarly boarded up.

The next chapter of the virus crisis could be social unrest. Maybe the US could take a page from Greenland and or even France, as local governments in those regions have banned alcohol sales to prevent social decay while in shutdowns.

Tyler Durden

Wed, 04/01/2020 - 12:05

Trump Tells America “Get Ready For A Painful 2 Weeks” As Task Force Goes ‘All-In’ On Mitigation

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"You’re going to start seeing some light at the end of the tunnel, but this is going to be a very painful, very, very painful two weeks," the president stated

E-Commerce Site Tupperware Suffered Credit Card Skimmer Attack

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Recently, US-based online store popular for kitchenware, ‘Tupperware’, has suffered a cyber attack. As discovered by  researchers, hackers placed a

E-Commerce Site Tupperware Suffered Credit Card Skimmer Attack on Latest Hacking News.


Adam gets a help meet as Genesis gives us a good ribbing

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 Australian fires. African locusts. Worldwide plague. Do we live in Biblical times or what? If the world really is ending, we thought it was time to prepare properly for Armageddon. By, you know, reading the damn thing. The Bible, that is. (Go back to the beginning here.)

 Yesterday, God seemed to lay a big fat trap [...]


Unpatched Zoom App Bug Lets Hackers Steal Your Windows Password

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Zoom has been there for nine years, but the immediate requirement of an easy-to-use video conferencing app during the coronavirus pandemic made it overnight a favorite tool for millions of people.

Though Zoom is an efficient online video meeting solution, it's still not the best choice in terms of privacy and security.

According to the latest finding by cybersecurity expert @_g0dmode, which

Under pressure: K3 to put loss-making UK Microsoft Dynamics reseller biz into administration

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AIM-listed biz says THAT virus meant it has little choice, will seek a buyer

AIM-listed software and managed services outfit K3 is to put its loss-making Microsoft Dynamics reseller division into the hands of administrators amid commercial unpredictability caused by COVID-19.…


US Manufacturing Slumps To Biggest Contraction Since Financial Crisis

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US Manufacturing Slumps To Biggest Contraction Since Financial Crisis



After a bloodbath in European PMIs (and a 'surprise' surge back to growth in China), and following some serious collapses in regional Fed surveys (and this morning's tumble in Canadian PMIs), today's US manufacturing survey data was expected to slide further into contraction (though not as much as the Services surveys collapsed).








Rikers Island is offering inmates $6 an hour and face masks to dig mass graves as coronavirus deaths in New York City rise to 1,096

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The mass graves are not COVID-19 specific.

Trader: "Maybe We Can't Handle The Truth After All"

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Trader: "Maybe We Can't Handle The Truth After All"

Authored by Richard Breslow via Bloomberg,

Most of us have lower pain thresholds than we would like to admit. And have developed various coping mechanisms to deal with it. We opt to hear what we want to. This tendency is often accommodated by enablers who long ago realized that catering to this preference can win friends and influence people. It contradicts the dictum

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of under-promising and over-delivering. But is a sleight of hand that often buys time. It can also occasionally lead to heads-I-win, tails-you-lose outcomes, moments of severe disappointment and hurt people.

Today is one of those days. Maybe we can’t handle the whole, unvarnished truth, but would be better served getting more of it and earlier. I don’t want to suggest things are more nefarious than they might really be. But, consider today’s market price action as an example of this in microcosm. It’s also worth pointing out that, at least some of what is going on, is an unwind of the front-running and rote positioning that came with what was a well-advertised and potentially difficult month-end portfolio rebalancing exercise that we just completed. Possibly more than it seems. It won’t take long to find out.

Risk assets are not having a happy start to the quarter. Not horrendous, but certainly discouraging nevertheless. And there are a number of factors that have conspired to drag us down. We were told, yesterday evening, that we are still in the very dangerous stages of surviving the pandemic. “It will be a very difficult two weeks.” Should that have come as a surprise to anyone watching the news? Apparently so. There’s still light at the end of the tunnel, just not as soon as we were told to hope. And with potentially greater human toll. Sometimes, it is just so much better to get out ahead of things. That’s exactly what NIAID Director Anthony Fauci was trying to do. And then he suggested a believable path toward achieving a better result than the models they use suggest.

Global economic numbers are going to be disappointing. Today’s certainly were uninspiring. We know we are in recession. Bad data comes with that. The lesson to learn is to follow the trajectory, one way or the other, and not get solely hung up on the absolute levels. We are in danger of slipping from looking beyond the numbers to merely being unnerved by them. Accept that precise estimates are hard to come by and aren’t really the point. Just look at the dispersion of forecasts for Friday’s nonfarm payrolls.

What may have tipped the balance, given our current mood, is the new realization that the V-shaped recovery is unlikely to happen exactly on schedule as we were promised. New realization? It was an unrealistic expectation that shouldn’t have been stated as the base case. Have we not already been discussing a fourth stimulus plan?

European banks are having to cut out dividends and share buybacks. We’ve been discussing the weakness of this sector and other uses for these funds ad nauseam. This can’t have come as a total bolt from the blue. The market’s reaction should be taken as an object lesson in understanding the concept of asking, “whose ox is being gored” more than anything else.

Some fund managers are bearish. Earnings season will be disappointing and revenue expectations too high. Enough said. Although, I did read that cigarette companies seem to be doing just fine.

The point is, we know these are bad times. And sometimes the bad news gangs up on us. That surely can’t come as a surprise, nor should we pretend it does. If that is the case, we aren’t doing enough to overcome the challenges we face.

Tyler Durden

Wed, 04/01/2020 - 10:15

As The U.S. Economy Collapses, Authorities Warn That The Unthinkable May Soon Become Reality

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It will be very interesting to watch how the American people respond to this nightmare.

Mark Bunker Settles In at City Hall

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Mark Bunker was sworn in to the Clearwater City Council seat 2 on Monday. There is a public ceremony being held in City Hall on Thursday evening. This is his new desk. And his first visitor. Mark tells me Bobblerinder will be a permanent fixture at his desk. It is quite an honor.

At the Supreme Court, Morrisons pops data breach liability win into its trolley – but it's not a get-out-of-compo free card for businesses

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Vicarious liability now applies to intentional leaks, top court says

Morrisons supermarket is not liable for the actions of a disgruntled employee who deliberately leaked nearly 100,000 employees' payroll data online, the Supreme Court has ruled.…


Who's going to pay for Britain's Aunty Beeb to carry on? Broadband users, broadcaster suggests to government

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With licence fee under threat, where can corporation get the money from?

The BBC has floated the idea of replacing its licence fee with a broadband levy in its submission to a government consultation.…


Tucker Carlson: The WHO Helped China Cover-Up Coronavirus

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And the U.S. media turned a blind eye.

Futures Tumble As Bear Market Rally Ends; Gundlach, Marks Expect New Lows

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Futures Tumble As Bear Market Rally Ends; Gundlach, Marks Expect New Lows

With the only question on traders' mind whether the March 20 liquidation cascade was the market low, the market itself may be ready to give us the answer, because on the first day of the new month and new quarter - when the speculation of pension fund buying is now gone for another 90 days - US equity futures tumbled along with stocks in Europe and Asia as investors were spooked by a warnin

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g from President Trump who said a "painful" two weeks lay ahead, as the latest US coronavirus figures are set to surpass 200,000 today sparking new fears about the pandemic’s impact on corporate profits and dividends. Amid the renewed rush for safe havens, the dollar climbed alongside with Treasuries.

As Bloomberg notes, stocks are beginning the new quarter with more declines, hot on the heels of the worst quarter for global shares since 2008. Investors disappointed with the loss of dividend income could spark a fresh wave of selling, knowing that analysts are dashing to update earnings forecasts to take into account the looming global recession and the slump in stock prices.

"Markets are looking at global equities in a new light, one with no buyback support and no dividends," said Chris Weston, head of research at Pepperstone Financial Pty Ltd. The earnings season is likely to trigger a decline in consensus S&P 500 profit expectations which “are far too high relative to dividend futures," he said.

Not helping sentiment were two investing icons, as both Oaktree Capital co-founder Howard Marks and DoubleLine Capital founder Jeffrey Gundlach said the S&P 500 Index is likely to reach new lows in April, with economic uncertainty further riling investors: “I think we’re going to get something that resembles that panicky feeling again during the month of April,” Gundlach said Tuesday during a webcast on the market and economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic. “We will get back to a better place, but it’s just not going to bounce back in a V-shape back to January of 2020.” And in a note to clients Tuesday, Marks said assets on Friday were priced “fairly” for the optimistic case, but “didn’t give enough scope for the possibility of worsening news."

With the bear market rally already running on fumes, it got a roundhouse punch to the head as European stocks plunged after major banks including HSBC Holdings and Standard Chartered halted dividends and share buybacks. Meanwhile, the euro extended its drop as PMI readings from the single-currency region painted a bleak picture, with Italy’s posting a record drop. But it wasn't just Italy: in the euro zone, Markit’s final March manufacturing PMI sank to lowest since mid-2012, when the currency union’s debt crisis was raging, and was well below the mark separating growth from contraction. 

Earlier in the session, Asian stocks also tumbled, led by industrials and IT. Stocks in Japan hit session lows in the final hour of trading, closing down almost 4% as the BOJ appears to have given up and drastically reduced the amount of ETFs it bought today.

Most markets in the region were down, with India's S&P BSE Sensex Index dropping 4.3% and South Korea's Kospi Index falling 3.9%, while Australia's S&P/ASX 200 gained 3.6%. Hong Kong shares also dropped. Chinese equities outperformed as a private reading on the country’s manufacturing sector beat expectations, rebounding in March in a number that can only be described as "gloriously fake."

A bunch of Asian manufacturing PMIs released today also failed to boost sentiment, as they illustrate the abrupt slump in economic activity, deteriorating employment outlook and declining forward outlook as lockdowns are ramped up and in some cases extended. Asia’s factory outlook has not only suffered the extent of China’s lockdown but is now being dealt a second wave of headwinds as demand from Europe and the US collapses.

  • Jibun Bank Japan March Manufacturing PMI 44.8 vs 47.8 in Feb.

  • Markit South Korea March Manufacturing PMI 44.2 vs 48.7 in Feb.

  • Markit Taiwan March Manufacturing PMI 50.4 vs 49.9 in Feb.

  • Markit Thai March Manufacturing PMI 46.7 vs 49.5 in Feb.

  • Markit Indonesia March Manufacturing PMI 45.3 vs 51.9 in Feb.

  • Markit Vietnam March Manufacturing PMI 41.9 vs 49 in Feb.

  • Markit Malaysia March Manufacturing PMI 48.4 vs 48.5 in Feb.

  • Markit Philippines March Manufacturing PMI 39.7 vs 52.3 in Feb.

  • Markit Myanmar March Manufacturing PMI 45.3 vs 49.8 in Feb.

The exception, the Australian AIG manufacturing PMI, which rebounded back to expansionary levels. However, before getting too excited, the accompanying analysis from AI Group poured cold water on the rebound, stating the result was "almost entirely due to a huge surge in demand for...food, toilet paper, cleaning products and other household essentials". So a direct result of the fear induced panic buying and hoarding from Australian consumers.

As such, with every passing day economists are becoming less convinced about the potential for a V-shaped recovery in growth. Factories around the world suffered one of their grimmest months on record in March, as the coronavirus led to mass shutdowns and wreaked havoc on supply chains. China’s reading, however, turned back into growth territory in March, offering a ray of hope that the world’s second-biggest economy may be on its way to recovery.

“In the U.S., the data remains fairly worrying and the peak may well be a few weeks on,” Bob Parker, an investment committee member at Quilvest Wealth Management, told Bloomberg TV. “The economic data is clearly starting to improve in March in China after a very weak January and February.”

In FX, the violent dollar rally that seemed to abate at the end of March returned, as haven demand increased after Trump warned of a “painful” two weeks ahead due to the virus; The greenback advanced against its G-10 peers aside from Norway’s krone; the euro fell a third day versus the dollar and extended its slide as London came into the market. The yen was marginally stronger, taking its rally into a sixth day also supported by speculation the coronavirus outbreak will weigh on Japanese investment overseas even as the nation’s new fiscal year begins. Australia’s bond yield curve bull flattened as the central bank extended its QE purchases to maturities further out the curve. N.Z. yields rose as the nation almost doubled its 2019-20 debt issuance.

In rates, US Treasury 10-year yields fell 6bps to 0.61% underpinned with the 10-year driving gains as S&P futures drift lower. Treasury yields lower by 3-7 bps across the curve as Bunds extended gains on haven buying, paring their underperformance against Treasuries. Italian bonds fell, underperforming euro-area peers, amid long-end selling and thin liquidity, while several banks warned it is only a matter of time before Italy loses its investment grade rating.

Elsewhere, West Texas oil fluctuated around $20 a barrel after President Donald Trump’s pledge to meet with feuding producers Saudi Arabia and Russia to support the market failed to bolster prices substantially.

Market Snapshot

  • S&P 500 futures down 3.2% to 2,487.50

  • STOXX Europe 600 down 3% to 310.51

  • MXAP down 2.1% to 133.92

  • MXAPJ down 1.4% to 430.33

  • Nikkei down 4.5% to 18,065.41

  • Topix down 3.7% to 1,351.08

  • Hang Seng Index down 2.2% to 23,085.79

  • Shanghai Composite down 0.6% to 2,734.52

  • Sensex down 4.5% to 28,131.45

  • Australia S&P/ASX 200 up 3.6% to 5,258.64

  • Kospi down 3.9% to 1,685.46

  • German 10Y yield fell 2.0 bps to -0.491%

  • Euro down 0.8% to $1.0939

  • Italian 10Y yield rose 4.4 bps to 1.351%

  • Spanish 10Y yield rose 3.8 bps to 0.715%

  • Brent futures at $24.95/bbl

  • Gold spot up 1.1% to $1,594.16

  • U.S. Dollar Index up 0.6% to 99.68

Top Overnight News

  • China reported 130 people over the past day who were infected with the novel coronavirus but don’t have symptoms, a sign that the group of people who can spread the virus without being detected is sizable

  • The premium to borrow dollars in some money markets has vanished, thanks to the Federal Reserve’s beefed-up swap lines. Three-month dollar-yen cross-currency basis hit a record on Tuesday -- this time in positive territory -- before extending on Wednesday. That means yen floating-rate funding is now more expensive than the U.S. variety. It was at a record discount just two weeks ago

  • Italy will extend its nationwide lockdown to April 13, as relaxing the rules too early would negate efforts to counter the spread of the coronavirus, the government told parliament Wednesday

  • Companies raised a record of at least $752 billion in bond markets around the world last quarter, to build cash buffers as the coronavirus pandemic darkens business outlooks

Asian equity markets traded mixed with sentiment cautious after Wall St wrapped up the worst quarterly performance in the S&P 500 since 2008 and biggest quarterly loss on record for the DJIA, as risk appetite remained centred on the ongoing coronavirus pandemic in which the US, UK and Spain all experienced their highest daily death tolls to date. ASX 200 (+3.6%) and Nikkei 225 (-4.5%) were mixed with outperformance in Australia led by the energy sector after oil prices found mild reprieve overnight and as financials also benefitted from recent regulatory concessions, while the Japanese benchmark faltered on the weight of the detrimental currency flows and after negative Tankan numbers which showed the lowest reading in the Large Manufacturing Index in 7 years. Elsewhere, Hang Seng (-2.2%) and Shanghai Comp. (-0.6%) diverged with the mainland underpinned by the surprise expansion in Chinese Caixin Manufacturing PMI and recent comments by China’s State Council which pledged further support measures including targeted RRR cuts. However, the mood in Hong Kong was less productive after a record slump in Retail Sales and with hefty losses seen in HSBC and Standard Chartered after they scrapped dividend and share repurchase plans on the directive of UK authorities to provide an extra cushion amid the coronavirus fallout. Finally, 10yr JGBs were slightly higher amid the negative risk appetite in Japan and after the BoJ recently raised the frequency of its purchase intentions for this month, although upside was capped by resistance ahead of 153.00 and due to a reserved Rinban operation in which the BoJ reduced its purchase amount for 3yr-5yr bonds.

Top Asian News

  • Indonesia Slashes Growth Forecast as Virus Pandemic Takes Toll

  • Singapore Banks Offer to Defer Mortgage, SME Loan Payments

  • Central Bank Funding of India Debt ‘Inevitable,’ Ex- Chief Says

  • Chinese Airlines Confident About Winning War Against Virus

The fading of month/quarter-end factors and the quietened stimulus news-flow have prompted global equitys to resume the sell-off, with Europe (Eurostoxx 50 -3.2%) following the negative lead from Wall Street and Asia overnight. Core markets see slightly more pronounced losses than peripheries, with particular underperformance seen in the UK’s FTSE 100 (-3.7%). The index is pressured by a slew of banks posting losses between 5-10% after agreeing to scrap a total of ~GBP 7.5bln in dividends and suspending share buybacks upon the order of the UK government. The BoE also stated that they are prepared to look into using their supervisory powers in the event the commitments are not adhered to; thus, HSBC (-8.5 %), Standard Chartered (-7.0%), Lloyds (-5.5%), Barclays (-6.1%) and RBS (-6.4%) are all on the backfoot. Unsurprisingly, the Financials sector is the laggard with Banks the underperformers in the sector breakdown. Energy follows a close second amid the rotting prices in the complex after yesterday’s mild reprieve. Travel & Leisure holds its place as one of the heavier-hit sectors due to the ongoing demand decline. In terms of individual movers Pirelli (-2.2%) failed to hold onto gains spurred by Italian brake maker Brembo purchasing a 2.43% stake in the company, as upside was potentially shaved by Continental’s (-5.0%) guidance withdrawal and bleak assessment of the auto and tire divisions – with material changes and disruptions seen in significant portions of its business – Nokian (-12.3%) and Michelin (-0.5%) also reside in the red, although the latter is somewhat cushioned by a broker upgrade at Barclays. Finally, Adidas (-2.9%) declines after suspending its EUR 1bln share buyback to conserve cash in light of retail store closures in Europe and North America.

Top European News

  • HSBC, StanChart Tumble After Regulators Push to Axe Payouts

  • ECB’s Stournaras Tells EU to Get Real or Risk New Debt Crisis

  • Italy Says Lockdown Will Be Extended, Warns of Long Battle

  • U.K. Manufacturing Shrinks More Than Expected as Virus Hit

In FX, the Dollar has regained momentum after Tuesday’s late tumble amidst dwindling demand for portfolio rebalancing and a 7th liquidity providing repo facility from the Fed, with widespread rebounds against G10 counterparts pushing the DXY up from sub-99.000 lows through 99.500 again. However, risk sentiment remains fragile to say the least and prone to further abrupt swings, while looming US economic indicators are destined to reveal more COVID-19 contagion that could scupper the latest Greenback revival. On that note, ADP will be viewed with added interest along with jobs components from the manufacturing PMI and ISM as proxies for the monthly BLS report on Friday and ahead of tomorrow’s weekly claims that many believe may top last Thursday’s 3.3 mn or so record breaking number.

  • AUD/NZD/CAD - In keeping with yesterday’s price action, the Aussie and Kiwi only received temporary overnight traction from another Chinese PMI beat and headline print back above the key 50.0 level (albeit just in the case of Caixin’s manufacturing index) before recoiling from around 0.6160 and just under 0.6000 respectively vs their US peer to almost 0.6050 and sub-0.5900 before paring some losses (latter circa chart support). Meanwhile, the Loonie also has declining crude prices to contend with and has fallen below 1.4200 ahead of Canada’s manufacturing PMI that could feasibly lose 50.0 status.

  • GBP/CHF/EUR - Also succumbing to the Buck’s bounce and renewed risk aversion, as Cable retreats from 1.2400, the Franc from near 0.9600 and Euro recoils from 1.1000+ towards 1.0900, with little or no reaction to UK, Swiss or Eurozone manufacturing PMIs irrespective of outcomes vs expectations.

  • JPY/SEK/NOK - In contrast to other majors, the Yen retains an element of safe-haven premium between 107.94-26 parameters and is well within striking distance of decent option expiries spaced equidistantly from 108.00 to 107.00 (2 bn at the top, 1.4 bn at 107.50 and 1 bn at the bottom). Meanwhile, the Norwegian Krona and its Swedish peer to a lesser extent have largely shrugged off sharp declines in manufacturing PMIs into contraction territory, and the former also the aforementioned downturn in oil, as Eur/Nok continues to trade off increased Norges Bank currency action below 11.4000 and Eur/Sek is capped ahead of 11.0000.

  • EM - No such luck for the Hungarian Forint after a horrendous plunge in the manufacturing PMI to 29.1 from 50.3 and added dire news in the breakdown as new orders sunk. Hence, Eur/Huf has advanced to fresh all time peaks approaching 364.00.

In commodities, WTI and Brent front-month futures resume the decline following the prior session’s mild reprieve – whilst divergence is seen between the energy benchmarks. Brent underperforms as it sees renewed pressure from further OPEC roadblocks after members failed to agree on an emergency meeting to deal with the price rot. OPEC’s President has been pushing for a meeting of OPEC’s Economic Commission Board – an OPEC body that does not set policy but makes recommendations. Sources noted that Saudi, UAE, Kuwait, and Nigeria pushed for no such meeting. The meeting itself could be agreed to by a simple majority of the 13 members, although the absence of Saudi would mean the meeting has no power to come to a consensus even if agreed upon as the Kingdom accounts for around 33% of total OPEC output. As a reminder, prior sources noted that Saudi opted for the next meeting to take place on the scheduled June date. Furthermore, as the OPEC+ production pact expired last night, the Kingdom is readying to ramp up its supply levels above 12mln BPD from ~10mln BPD in March, a move confirmed by an industry official. Russia is reportedly ditching its plans to raise production by 300k BPD (with scope for it to be raised to 500k BPD) amid the supply glut, albeit the rift with Saudi remains. Brent futures briefly dipped below USD 25/bbl, having slipped from yesterday’s USD 27.90/bbl high. Meanwhile, WTI fares modestly better amid a seemingly growing alliance between US and Russia after sources suggested a US-Saudi partnership has been put on hold, possibly after Saudi refused US’ request to ditch production hikes. The US and Russian Energy Ministers, after President Trump and President Putin’s call, agreed to continue the dialogue among major producers and keep tabs on the market volatility. Furthermore, sources State-side said the Trump Admin is mulling leasing SPR storage to energy companies. The plan could be announced as soon as today and comes after the Admin failed to secure funding from Congress to purchase cheap oil to fill the SPR’s 77mln barrels of free capacity. The idea of the revised plan is to tackle the risk of overwhelming commercial storage from the growing supply glut, oil will be stored for sale later once the crisis subsides. Elsewhere, the weekly Private Inventory data only adds to the bearish fire after a larger-than-expected build of 10.5mln barrels vs. Exp. 4mln barrels – traders will be eyeing today’s DoEs for confirmation. In terms of metals, spot gold recoups some of the prior day’s losses after the downside was exacerbated heading into the US cash close. The yellow metal dipped below USD 1600/oz and its 21 DMA at USD 1589/oz. Prices currently hover in-between those levels. Copper prices largely move in tandem with the overall risk appetite, albeit to a lesser extent. The red metal remains north of USD 2/lb but off best levels.

US Event Calendar

  • 7am: MBA Mortgage Applications, prior -29.4%

  • 8:15am: ADP Employment Change, est. -150,000, prior 183,000

  • 9:45am: Markit US Manufacturing PMI, est. 48, prior 49.2

  • 10am: Construction Spending MoM, est. 0.6%, prior 1.8%

  • 10am: ISM Manufacturing, est. 44.5, prior 50.1

  • Wards Total Vehicle Sales, est. 12m, prior 16.8m

DB's Jim Reid concludes the overnight wrap

Happy April Fool’s Day although I suspect in 2020 we will not see the usual list of implausible or fake stories given the mood of the globe. Ten years ago on this foolish day I met my wife after a brief period of internet dating email exchanges. Her profile showed her doing the splits which I admired and she liked the music I sent her of my band. Given that this didn’t happen very often I had to make sure I followed up on it. The rest is history. How are we celebrating in a covid-19 world? By social distancing which to be fair has been strictly practiced in our household since we managed three kids in two years.

As it’s a new month and quarter we have just published our usual monthly performance review which this month needs a fold out version to capture some of the falls on the graphs in the document. We also include Q1 and YTD data. In addition we add sector performance charts for the S&P 500 and Stoxx 600 for March (with YTD figures added) and also a list of worst and best performers over this tumultuous last month. See the report out at a similar time to this.

Two other reports to point out from my team and I are firstly where DB’s new economic forecasts for 2020 appear in the worst years on record using up to 800 years of GDP data? DB expects -4% to -9% 2020 GDP for the six main developed market countries but do these numbers make the top ten of worst years on record for each? Click here to find out. Secondly we put out a document entitled “The exit strategy” where we look at the most likely dates that large western economies will reopen after lockdowns and what might happen next. See here for more.

In terms of new cases, as we show in our new Corona Crisis Daily, Italy and Spain continue to see their curves flatten. See the new daily for more on this including lots of interesting graphs and tables.

We’re straight to China now where this morning the Caixin PMI printed at 50.1 (vs. 45.0 expected and 40.3 last month). That backs up the better than expected state PMI releases we saw yesterday however other readings in Asia clearly trail China. Japan’s final manufacturing PMI printed unrevised at 44.8 while South Korea’s reading of 44.2 (vs. 48.7 last month) was the lowest since January 2009. In South East Asia the drop in PMIs was sharper with the Philippines reading dropping to 39.7 (vs. 52.3 last month), the lowest since records began in 2016, while Vietnam slipped to 41.9 (vs. 49.0 last month) and Indonesia recorded 45.3 (vs. 51.9 last month). One bright spot though was Taiwan which rose to 50.4 (vs. 49.9 last month) partly as supplier delivery times increased rather than improvement in orders. So, the message from the PMIs is clear that even as China is showing signs of stabilization the economies elsewhere are continuing to falter.

Asian markets are mixed on the back of that with the Australia’s ASX (+1.50%) and Shanghai Comp (+0.30%) pulling ahead at the expense of the Nikkei (-1.49%), Hang Seng (-0.92%) and Kospi (-0.60%) which are all down. Meanwhile, yields on 10y USTs are down -3.3bps to 0.637% and Brent crude oil prices are trading down -2.01%.

Elsewhere, President Trump warned overnight that it’s “going to be a painful two weeks” for Americans while adding, “Our strength will be tested, our endurance will be tried.” Deborah Birx, the top public-health official coordinating the coronavirus task force, said that as many as 200,000 Americans are projected to die in the outbreak, even with another 30 days of the most stringent public-health restrictions. S&P futures are trading down -1.74% this morning on the back of the news. Elsewhere, California and Texas are planning cuts to their jail populations with early releases to limit the virus from spreading through overcrowded prison systems. In other news, Japanese PM Shinzo Abe’s party has proposed a JPY 60tn ($555bn) package to help Japan’s households and businesses survive the coronavirus pandemic. The stimulus is worth more than 10% of GDP and if agreed on will be the biggest stimulus on record.

After the latest China PMI numbers, one of the main highlights today will be the release of manufacturing PMIs for March from Europe and the US ahead of services on Friday. We have had a few flash readings already last week, and they showed a collapse across the board but more in services than manufacturing. The final numbers don’t often change much from the flash but given the severity of the lockdowns in the second half of the month this will be one to watch. We’ll also get a first look at Italy and Spain which given their more savage impact from the virus, these will be a big focus. We’ll also get the ISM manufacturing reading from the US later on, where the consensus on Bloomberg is looking for a decline to 44.5, which would be the lowest since May 2009 but this is only the beginning of the slump for the US.

US markets ended the quarter on a softer note after a decent bounce over the last week. They fell just over -2% after London markets closed with the S&P 500 closing down -1.60%. Prior to the late sell-off the STOXX 600 closed up +1.65%. Energy stocks advanced on both sides of the Atlantic following Monday’s rout in oil prices, though oil itself ‘only’ stabilised at multi-year lows, with Brent Crude nearly unchanged. In fact, energy was the only sector to finish higher in the US, while in Europe only Telecoms and Banks were down on the day. In a further sign that volatility in markets is continuing to ebb and also just how volatile March was, the S&P’s move yesterday was actually its third smallest absolute move all month. March 2020 will go down as having only seen one move of less than 1% in either direction. Meanwhile the VIX index fell back -3.5pts to 53.5pts, its lowest level since March 12 and putting it over a third lower than its closing level just over two weeks back. The volatility index averaged over 57pts for the month, over nearly 3x the 20-year average of 19.6pts.

There was various news on the US policy front yesterday, with President Trump floating the prospect in a tweet of further fiscal stimulus down the line, saying that “With interest rates for the United States being at ZERO, this is the time to do our decades long awaited Infrastructure Bill. It should be VERY BIG & BOLD, Two Trillion Dollars, and be focused solely on jobs and rebuilding the once great infrastructure of our country! Phase 4”. Given that the $2 trillion “Phase 3” package was already far larger than the fiscal stimulus in 2009 this is ambitious and will likely be difficult to get political momentum at this stage. However, House Speaker Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Schumer have also called for additional stimulus in recent days and so there would be bipartisan support for some kind of phase 4 bill, if Trump can get other Republicans – especially fiscally conservative ones – on board with additional government spending. Further outbreaks around the country during an election year for many senators could see them support the additional legislation.

Meanwhile the Federal Reserve announced that they were establishing a temporary repurchase agreement facility for foreign and international monetary authorities (FIMA Repo Facility). This will enable other central banks or international monetary authorities who have a FIMA account to temporarily exchange US Treasuries for dollars, something that will further help ease the dollar shortage we’ve seen recently.

In spite of the vague prospect of further fiscal stimulus, 10yr Treasury yields actually fell by -5.7bps yesterday. It was a rather different story in Europe however, where sovereign debt sold off across the board and peripheral spreads widened for a 3rd consecutive day. 10yr bund yields were up +2.4bps by the end of the session, while the spread of Italian yields over bunds was up a further +2.6bps to finish just under 200bps. It hit a recent low of 129bps back on 12 February.

Economic data releases yesterday further demonstrated the impact of the coronavirus. The Conference Board’s consumer confidence indicator from the US fell to 120.0 in March (vs. 110.0 expected), which was the largest monthly decline in the reading since August 2011. The expectations reading also saw a notable fall, down to 88.2, which is its lowest level since October 2016, before President Trump had been elected. Over in Hong Kong meanwhile, retail sales volumes in February fell by a larger-than-expected -46.7% yoy (vs. -37.5% expected), and down from a -23.1% decline in January. In Germany, there were 470,000 requests by companies from the country’s kurzarbeit scheme, where the government helps companies by subsidising workers’ wages.

In terms of the other data out, the flash estimate of Euro Area inflation for March fell to 0.7% (vs. 0.8% expected), while the MNI Chicago PMI for the US in March held up at a better-than-expected 47.8 (vs. 40.0 expected).

To the day ahead now, and the highlight will be the aforementioned manufacturing PMI releases. Other data out includes the ISM manufacturing index from the US for March, along with construction spending for February and weekly MBA mortgage applications. Over in Europe we’ll get German retail sales for February, as well as the Euro Area and Italian unemployment rate for February too. Finally tonight, Boston Fed President Rosengren will be giving a virtual talk on the economic effects of Covid-19.

Tyler Durden

Wed, 04/01/2020 - 08:09

Japanese VP: The WHO Should be Renamed the ‘Chinese Health Organization’

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For its role in helping Beijing cover up coronavirus.

Scientologists are convinced that they can rescue the planet from deadly pandemic

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 We often say that what Scientology offers which appeals to the small percentage of people who become involved in it is this: Certainty.

Whatever the uncertainties in your life, Scientology claims that it has tried-and-true answers discovered by founder L. Ron Hubbard, and that any upset in your life can be solved if you just [...]


Why Did Russia Just Halt Domestic Gold Purchases?

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Why Did Russia Just Halt Domestic Gold Purchases?


As the gold market continues to deal with global liquidity issues, and virus-lockdown-related disruptions between paper and physical pricing as extremely high physical demand creates shortages, Russia made a surprise announcement on Monday.






Starting April 1, Russia will be suspending its domestic gold purchases:







University Issues Decree To Students: Do Not Use Terms Such As ‘Chinese Virus’

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'And do not allow others to use them'.

Apple's latest macOS Catalina update mysteriously borks SSH for some unlucky fans. What could be the cause?

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Connecting to a port greater than 8192 using a hostname now stalls, possibly

Apple's latest update to macOS Catalina appears to have broken SSH for some users.…


Obama Drops Coronavirus Bombshell: It’s All Due to Climate Change!

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"We can't afford any more consequences of climate denial."

Europe & Iran Complete First INSTEX Transaction, Dodging US Sanctions 

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Europe & Iran Complete First INSTEX Transaction, Dodging US Sanctions 

The very first transaction of the INSTEX special purpose 'alternative' vehicle between Europe and Iran has been successfully completed, according Germany's Foreign Ministry Tuesday. "France, Germany and the United Kingdom confirm that INSTEX has successfully concluded its first transaction, facilitating the export of medical goods from Europe to Iran. These goods are now in Iran

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g>," the ministry said in a statement.

It was created over a year ago by European signatories to the 2015 nuclear deal in order to bypass Trump administration Iran-related sanctions, after the Belgium-based SWIFT financial messaging service suspended access for Iranian banks in Nov. 2018 under pressure from Washington.

France, Germany, and the United Kingdom confirmed the first transaction with Iran involving the export of medical goods, at a crucial moment the coronavirus is ravaging the population, and vowed it was the first of many to come. 

"Now the first transaction is complete, INSTEX and its Iranian counterpart STFI will work on more transactions and enhancing the mechanism," the statement said on behalf of the three nuclear deal signatories.

Though Tehran has long criticized the Europeans for bowing to Trump's sanctions and not doing enough to keep up their end of the JCPOA, the 'SWIFT-alternative' of INSTEX is designed to save the nuclear deal by at least partially ensuring trade transactions with Europe continues, also with the assurance that no money directly changes hands.

The mechanism also seeks to woo European companies back into doing business with Iran, and to provide a legal and 'humanitarian' means of bypassing US sanctions without fear of penalties.

How INSTEX is designed to work, via Global Trade Law Blog: "The program sets up a trade finance system between Europe and Iran. EU exporters send goods to Iran, submit invoices to INSTEX, and receive payment from the INSTEX entity in Europe. Likewise, Iranian exporters send goods to Europe, submit invoices to the INSTEX-related entity in Iran, and receive payments in Iranian Rials. No U.S. dollars are involved, nor is the SWIFT system (both of which could subject the transactions to U.S. sanctions)."

The timing is sure to not be missed by the Trump administration, given that even amid the global coronavirus pandemic, which has been particularly fierce in Iran - taking over 2,800 lives among 44,600 confirmed cases - the US has kept up its "maximum pressure" campaign, despite critics saying the sanctions are ensuring the further spread of the virus through hitting Iran's already weakened medical sector hard.

Tyler Durden

Wed, 04/01/2020 - 04:15

15 Times Infowars Predicted A Bioweapon Release Would Turn Into Worldwide Tyranny

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Tomorrow's news today!

Iran Blames "Terrorists" For Pipeline Explosion On Turkish Border, Gas Exports Halted

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Iran Blames "Terrorists" For Pipeline Explosion On Turkish Border, Gas Exports Halted

On Tuesday a key pipeline carrying gas between Turkey and Iran exploded at the Gurbulak border gate on the Turkish side near the Iranian border, temporarily halting gas exports from Iran.

Though most international reports treated the blast as mysterious in origin, including some Turkish state broadcasters such as TRT, Iranian leader wer

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e quick to blame "terrorists".

Via APF: The pipeline carries around 10 billion cubic meters of Iranian gas to Turkey annually.

"This morning, terrorists attacked a natural gas pipeline inside Turkey near Iran's Bazargan border with Turkey... Flow of gas has been halted," director of the National Iranian Gas Company, Mehdi Jamshidi Dana, said in a statement.

Fire and smoke could be seen billowing from the site throughout the much of the day in dramatic footage captured by Russian media.

"The gas flow on the natural gas pipeline was cut and the fire that had started was extinguished by fire squads," Turkish broadcaster TRT said, adding that the incident is under investigation.

According to the New York Times, citing Iranian state sources further, Kurdish militants operating in eastern under the PKK are being blamed for the blast :

Iran’s state-run IRNA news agency quoted National Iranian Gas Co. gas dispatching director Mahdi Jamshidi Dana as saying authorities suspected the Kurdistan Workers' Party, or PKK, likely attacked the pipeline.

Kurdish militants belonging to the outlawed PKK have targeted oil and gas pipelines from Iraq and Iran as part of their more than three-decade old campaign for self-rule in southeast Turkey.

Indeed at the height of fighting between PKK militants and the Turkish state throughout the 1990's and into the 2000's the pipeline was attacked and disabled on repeat occasions. 

Turkey reportedly has kept an extremely reduced border security force in the area of late due to the coronavirus pandemic.

“It takes usually three to four days to repair and resume gas exports,” Turkish reports said.

Tyler Durden

Wed, 04/01/2020 - 02:45

Project Veritas Video: National Guard At COVID-19 Test Site Say “It’s The Flu!”

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Officials say mainstream media overhyping pandemic.

Hong Kong swells tech-buying subsidies for local businesses that buy from local businesses

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$25k from you and $75k from the government buys improved productivity and economic diversity

The Special Administrative Region of Hong Kong has increased the subsidies offered to local business’ technology investments by 50 percent.…


Sweden: Culture Of Silence

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Sweden: Culture Of Silence

Authored by Judith Bergman via The Gatestone Institute,

A recent report published by Linköping University about the Swedish National Council for Crime Prevention (Brå), "Can Brå be trusted?" has claimed that Brå's reports are politically biased.

According to Brå's own website, "Brå is an agency under the auspices of the Ministry of

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Justice and a knowledge centre for the criminal justice system. The agency's mandate is to contribute to the development of knowledge within the criminal justice system and the criminal policy area, as well as to promote crime prevention work. Brå is responsible for the official criminal statistics and other statistics, which includes producing, following, analysing, and reporting on criminality and the criminal justice system's responses to crime".

It is therefore crucial that Brå fulfill its obligations in a factual and objective manner, not least in the current environment, when Sweden is experiencing a veritable crime wave, including shootings, bombings and other gang-inspired violence that some commentators have likened to "war".

According to the Linköping University report, the results of which were based primarily on interviews with former and current employees and managers of Brå, in addition to a number of former police chiefs and ministers of justice, Brå's work is politically biased due to political pressure from the Ministry of Justice as well as the management of Brå. The report states:

"For example, a former employee said that he, together with the Director-General [of Brå] was called to the Ministry of Justice for a conversation with the requirement of a report to be 'corrected'. The report consisted of an evaluation of a government proposal, concluding that the proposals were harmful. The interviewee realized that the conclusions would be politically unpopular, but had nevertheless written them... Other former employees have pointed out that it was clear that there were political reasons why they were pressured to change content in reports even though these researchers were not called to the Ministry... One employee reported, among other things, that a director-general expressed that 'there is a reality and a political reality' when the director-general demanded that an employee change a report..."

The Linköping University report goes on to say:

"Interviews show that adaptation of content in reports has taken place in different ways. A former employee made the following summary: 'If results were not liked then censorship was used, correction of results, toning down results and highlighting other parts of [the] study that were not so sensitive or that could show positive results'".

Another employee said:

"After I was hired at Brå, it didn't take me long to realize that working at Brå is a big challenge. As an employee of Brå, you have to write and think in a certain way. Brå is extremely controlled from the top. There are some people at Brå who run [the organization] with an iron hand. If one were to be a little harsh then one could liken it to a sect. I don't think they really understand what kind of culture they have created".

The Linköping report states that there appears to be a culture of silence by which is meant, "norms that create silence among employees, when they do not dare to bring up certain viewpoints, questions or criticism, whether internal or external".

Ironically, this culture of silence has been symptomatic of Swedish society, where most have been afraid to speak publicly about the problems caused by unfettered migration for fear of being ostracized.

The report also found that Brå appears to strive to hire employees that will "act as obedient bureaucrats at an authority, rather than people who have accepted a researcher's role".

The report has caused consternation in Sweden. The Swedish Parliament's judicial committee has now invited the authors of the report, as well as the general director, to their next meeting. Johan Forsell, the legal spokesman of the Moderate party, said:

"Very serious allegations and accusations are made in the report. Brå is, after all, an expert authority that is supposed to deliver facts that objectively reflect society. We need, quite simply, to get to the bottom of this... Regardless of when it happened and under what political color, the very suspicion of influence is serious enough. But that responsibility now falls on Justice Minister Morgan Johansson".

Meanwhile, Sweden continues its downward spiral. Last year there were 257 reports of explosions -- including attempted explosions -- an increase of 59% compared to 2018, according to SVT Nyheter. Yet, only seven people were convicted for any of those 257 crimes. In 2020, at least 10 explosions have already taken place.

According to Stefan Hector, head of the National Operative Unit (NOA):

"Earlier we saw that hand grenades were used. Now we see how homemade explosives are used instead as weapons in conflicts. Either to injure or to terrorize but with a new ruthlessness where they bomb wherever the public is without caring that the public might get hurt".

According to SVT News, the police and other authorities "do not know" where all the explosives come from. "The issue of explosives as weapons in conflicts is relatively new. This means that we have considerable uncertainty as to where the parts for the explosive charges come from", Hector said.

"Unless the integration of the newcomers succeeds better, in the long run, the social glue that makes a democratic welfare society of our kind possible risks being torn apart", professor in political science at the University of Uppsala, Tommy Möller, recently wrote in an op-ed.

Gatestone Institute has described the serious economic, welfare, crime and other challenges that Swedish society now faces as a result of migration into the country, for example here, here, here, here and here.

One issue that Swedish figures of authority are now admitting to having neglected over the years is anti-Semitism. Municipal managers in Malmö, for instance, Sweden's third-largest city, where immigrants constitute one-third of the population, now say that it took a long time before they "saw the extent" of the problem. Anders Rubin was school council member of the Malmö municipality from 2013 to 2018. "Many students who have a background in the Middle East, and in several Muslim countries, have notions of Jews that are not at all compatible with democratic values," he told Sydsvenskan recently. He also confessed that the municipality had not taken the complaints of its Jewish citizens seriously. According to Sydsvenskan:

"Anders Rubin says he and the other leading Social Democrats initially underestimated the alarm from the city's Jews about a growing amount of threats and harassment. He describes it as the municipality management having had their 'guards down'."

"It was not felt that there was an established anti-Semitic attitude more than in extremely peripheral right-wing groups. I think we understood that the problem was marginal" admitted Rubin to Sydsvenskan. The newspaper also recounts how in 2009, Malmö's then-mayor, Ilmar Reepalu, responded to attacks on a Jewish demonstration by saying that Swedish Jews ought to distance themselves from Israel.

"It was only when we began to realize that in some of our immigrant groups there were ideas that were problematic, that we realized that we were forced to do something", Rubin said. He said there are probably limits to what municipal authorities can do about anti-Semitism.

"To think that we could achieve the frictionless city is a utopia. In such a diversified city as Malmö, one cannot change those types of attitudes by coming from the top and being forceful and telling people what to think. Somehow, it is extremely difficult to drive this down to a municipal political level. I think it is a complicated question, how we as representatives of the majority society should act to influence the attitudes of minorities. It easily becomes counterproductive".

Perhaps unwittingly, Rubin made a crucial point here: namely, that for years authorities swept serious problems related to migration under the rug, making them taboo and then vilifying those who dared to talk about them in public. The Linköping University report about the culture at Brå, sadly, exposed this pattern.

Tyler Durden

Wed, 04/01/2020 - 02:00

Speculation Swirls Around NY Gov Andrew Cuomo’s “Pierced Nipples”

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'Alright how do I unsee something?'
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