In the post After My Contrarian Calling Apple's 3rd Miss Accurately, I Release My Apple Research Track Record For 2 1/2 Years, I came clean with the historical performance of my Apple research. Of course, many a hater had their hearts crushed as math and common sense once again ruled the day. Still, we see herd mentality and brand loyalty effect even those who're really supposed to know what they're doing - to wit: Rochdale Trader Made Unauthorized Purchases Of As Much As $1 Billion In Apple Stock Last Month

... a trader at Rochdale Securities made unauthorized purchases of $750 million to $1 billion in Apple stock last month and now the firm is seeking a lifeline. 

It's unclear when the unauthorized stock purchases took place, but shares of Apple have dropped around 11.5% since Oct. 1.

Stamford, Connecticut-based Rochdale, which employs noted bank analyst Dick Bove, is looking for a possible deal to recapitalize such as a capital injection or a merger, Bloomberg reports citing sources familiar. 

Well, it's obvious the brokerage didn't buy that trader a subscription to BoomBustBlog. I've been following Apple for roughly two years now and have been one of the (if not the) most accurate fundamental pundits on said matter, with my valuations hugging Apple's share price rather tightly for the entire time I have followed it.

aapl research accuracy copy

Reference Apple - Competition and Cost Structure 05/16/2011, which is now available for download to all due to its dated nature - even those who do not subscribe. Please note that this report only includes base case scenarios, while the latter reports included base, optimistic and pessimistic scenarios - which is much more realistic. Although some of the later reports are also stale-dated, they contain valuable knowledge that I'm not prepared to release to the public for free at this time.

On Friday, 12 October 2012 I posted A Review Of The Accuracy Of Last Quarter's Apple Earnings Notes where in I went over the true value of my last quarterly review of Apple's performance. Please note that this was before the Q3 earnings release:

A subscriber convinced me to post the 1st quarter's valuation bands (subscribers, see Apple Margin & Valuation Note 03/15/2012) for Apple to squelch the comments of those who are guessing what's behind the firewall. Our base case scenario was right on target, and  during the target and after the earnings release I realized that we underestimated international (especially Asian) sell though and shifted the weight towards the optimistic band which also proved fairly accurate. As all can notice, the pessimistic band is not shown, and that is where the value lies here. I am now shifting my bias towards (that's towards, not to) the pessimistic band, for I feel Apple has now started to feel the competitive and margin pressures that I warned of, and has done so right at the deadline that I gave in 2010 (this is just as much a factor of luck as it is skill, alas, if it bears fruit it bears fruit). The latest valuation bands can be accessed by paying subscribers below (click here to subscribe):

Apple 4Q2012 update professional & institutional
Apple 4Q2012 update - retail
"iPhone Margin worksheet - blog download

Just to make this perfectly clear, I've been stating that Apple had margin compression stemming from extreme competition coming for two years now. That does not mean that Apple will collapse. As a matter of fact, I've included my stale Apple reports and a graph that shows I've pretty much been on target with Apple's share price the whole while. And for those who are so concerned with timing, I've highlighted in bold font where I've told subscribers to turn pessimistic on Apple's share price. This was October, roughly 12% ago in share price and many tens of billions of dollars in market value.

image005

Keep the following in mind as you peruse this post...

apple product chart growth

I discussed this in detail with Lauren Lyster on Capital Account. The margin discussion started at 7:55.

For those who haven't heard my description of Apple's arch competitor, Google's, business model, look here:

See Right On Time, My Prediction Of Apple Margin Compression 8 Quarters From My CNBC Warning Landed Right On The Money! for more on the mechanics of the margin compression theory for Apple.

The latest Apple valuation bands (including the advanced pessimistic bands) can be accessed by paying subscribers below (click here to subscribe):
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I have thoroughly warned (since 2009) that Spain will be one of the most catalyzing states suffering the Eurocalypse. Even more interesting, the rating agencies have a very significant (although not very utilitarian) role, see The Embarrassingly Ugly Truth About Spain: The IMF, EC and ALL Major Rating Agencies Are LYING!!!

thumb_Reggie_Middleton_on_Street_Signs_Fire

Looking at today's news, my ruminations take form, but the question of the day is that, unlike with Greece whose bonds have killed banks (see How Greece Killed Its Own Banks! and Dead Bank Deja Vu? How The Sovereigns Killed Their Banks & Why Nobody Realizes They're Dead) until the ECB bought the pain from the municipal muppets in a Pan-European Ponzi-style shell game (see ECB As European Lender Of Last Resort = Institutional Purveyor Of A Pan-European Ponzi Scheme), Spain's asset and credit bubble pop ramifications are much too large too large to simply stuff in an ECB side pocket. So, what happens to those banks that leveraged up and gorged on all of this risky ass, risk free European sovereign debt??? Well, first let's peruse today's media as Bloomberg reports Spain’s Economy Shrinks for Fifth Quarter Amid Bailout Talk

 Spain’s economy contracted for a fifth quarter, adding pressure on Premier Mariano Rajoy to seek more European aid even as the euro area’s fourth-largest economy met a bill-sales target.

Gross domestic product fell 0.4 percent in the three months through September from the previous quarter, matching the contraction of the second quarter, the Bank of Spain said in an estimate in its monthly bulletin released in Madrid today. That compares with a median forecast for a 0.7 percent contraction in a Bloomberg News survey of 10 economists.

Moody's passed on cutting Spain's sovereign rating (to below investment grade) recent and the general sigh of relief has been short-lived.  Moody's cut Catalonia's rating (by two notches to Ba3) and four other regions.  The rating agency cited two main factors.  First is the deterioration in the liquidity situation of the regions, as evidenced by the low levels of cash reserves.  Second, it cited the heavy reliance on short-term credit lines.    
Three of the regions that were downgraded (Catalonia, Murcia and Andalucia) face large redemption before year end.  Madrid had established a fund to help the regions secure financing of 18 bln euros.  Eight of the 17 regions have requested funds, including 4 of the five that were downgraded by Moody's.  These requests amount to a little more than 17 bln euros, practically exhausting the fund.   
Separately, Spain's finance ministry acknowledged that is year's deficit, as in recent years, will overshoot the government's target.  Indeed, this year's new projection of 7.3% overshoots not only the relaxed 6.3% shortfall, but even the 6.8% that Rajoy unilaterally suggested coming out of the EU meeting in which the leaders endorsed the fiscal pact.  The 10.5 bln social security (not just pensions, but unemployment compensation and other transfer payments) deficit is being blamed, which itself is partly a function of the austerity face of economic weakness.   

 You can't say I didn't warn 'ya...

Well, the most stringent warning is also probably the most profitable if timed correctly, and that was the warning on the FIRE sector on CNBC (Reggie Middleton Sets CNBC on F.I.R.E.!!! and First I set CNBC on F.I.R.E., Now It Appears I've Set...):

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For more on this, see The F.I.R.E. Is Set To Blaze! Focus On Banks, part 1. A lot of people, even professionals, truly believed that the FIRE malaise would not be European in nature. Whaattt????!!! As expected, this European Insurer Needs Insurance As $6B Of Its Bonds Are Instantly Subordinated Due To "Spain's Pain". Insurers are very heavy investors in European sovereign debt AND the debt of financial institutions. But hey, weren't the European financial institutions getting killed by choking on Sovereign debt (reference Dead Bank Deja Vu? How The Sovereigns Killed Their Banks & Why Nobody Realizes They're Dead)? So, you know what's up next right?

European Bank Run Watch: Spaniard Edition

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You know, I don't even bother to go over banking statements anymore. They are so steeped in bullshit, quasi-fraudulent fallacy and muppetology, that I'm simply waiting for Bernanke to slip up and true market pricing to come to the fore before I jump back into the game. ZeroHedge comments on JPM's earnings as follows JPM Beats On Loan Loss Reserve Release Despite Drop In Trading Revenues And NIM, Surge In Non-Performing Loans:

There is a lot of verbiage in the official JPM Q3 Earnings press release which directs to a bottom line number of $1.40, or $5.7 billion on expectations of $1.24, with revenue of $25.9 billion on expectations of $24.53 billion. The primary reason for the lack of disappointment: no major losses in Corporate from CIO, with corporate generating $221 million in Q3, up from a loss of $(1.777) billion in Q2. And then come the adjustments:  $900 million pretax benefit ($0.14 per share after-tax increase in earnings) from reduced mortgage loan loss reserves in Real Estate Portfolios; $825 million pretax incremental charge-offs ($0.13 per share after-tax decrease in earnings) due to regulatory guidance on certain residential loans in Real Estate Portfolios; $888 million pretax benefit ($0.14 per share after-tax increase in earnings) due to extinguishment gains on redeemed trust preferred capital debt securities in Corporate; $684 million pretax expense ($0.11 per share after-tax decrease in earnings) for additional litigation reserves in Corporate; Then there is a DVA loss of $211 MM in banking. Net-net, after taking into account all one-off adjustments, the Q3EPS was really $1.26. But for all the data fudging, and attempts to make the reported EPS non-comparable to the expected one, following an avalanche of one-time adjustments, the bottom line is this: revenues from trading dropped both sequentially and Q/Q while banking expenses rose, Net Interest Margin dropped to a new record low, even as the firm too a major $967 million loan loss reserve release on its loans to $22.8 billion, even as its total Non-Performing Loans rose by a whopping $1.3 billion to $11.370 billion, the largest quarterly jump in years! Just how JPM can justify such a major contribution to earnings coming from loan losses when NPLs have soared is unclear to anyone with a frontal lobe.

On that note, let's reminisce to the days of Q2 2011, where I penned There's Something Fishy at the House of Morgan. Let me know if you've seen this story before. It's amazing that banks can dance this dance, over and over again and STILL not get called on it:

I invite all to peruse the mainstream financial media and sell side Wall Street's take on JP Morgan's Q1 earnings before reading through my take. Pray thee tell me, why is there such a distinct difference? Below are excerpts from the our review of JP Morgan's Q1 results, available to paying subscribers (including valuation and scenario analysis): JPM Q1 2011 Review & Analysis.

JPMorgan’s Q1 net revenue declined 9% y-o-y ad 3% q-o-q to $25.2bn as non-interest revenues declined 5% y-o-y (down 5% q-o-q) to $13.3bn while net interest income declined 13% y-o-y and (-2% q-o-q) to $12.5bn. However, despite decline in net revenues, noninterest expenses were flat at $16bn. Non-interest expenses as proportion of revenues was 63% in Q1 2011 compared with 58% a year ago and 61% in Q4 2010. However, due to substantial decline in provision for credit losses which were slashed 83% y-o-y (63% q-o-q) to $1.2bn from $7.0bn, PBT was up 78% y-o-y (15% q-o-q).

Lower reserve for loan losses and consequent decline in Eyles test (an efficacy of ability to absorb credit losses) coupled with higher expected wave of foreclosures which is masked by lengthening foreclosure period and overhang of shadow inventory, advocate a cautionary outlook for banking and financial institutions. As a result of consecutive under-provisioning since the start of 2010, JP Morgan’s Eyles test have turned negative and is the worst since at least the last 17 quarters. The estimated loan losses after exhausting entire loan loss reserves could still eat upto 8% of tangible equity.

Non-interest revenues

Non-interest revenue declined 5% y-o-y (down 5% q-o-q) to $13.3bn from $14.0bn in the previous year. Investment banking fees were up 23% y-o-y as debt underwriting fees and advisory fees were up 29% y-o-y and 44% y-o-y, respectively partially offset by 8% decline in equity underwriting fees. Principal transactions revenues were up 4% y-o-y to $4.8bn, the highest at least since last 17 quarters. Asset management revenues were up 10% y-o-y $3.6bn. The bank reported a loss of $0.5bn on mortgage fees and related income compared with gain of 0.7bn in the corresponding quarter last year while securities gains for Q1 2011 declined to $102m from $610m in Q1 2010. Credit card income was up 6% y-o-y to $1.4bm while other income increased 40% y-o-y to $574m.

I have warned of this event. JP Morgan (as well as Bank of America) is literally a litigation sinkhole. See JP Morgan Purposely Downplayed Litigation Risk That Spiked 5,000% Last Year & Is Still Severely Under Reserved By Over $4 Billion!!! Shareholder Lawyers Should Be Scrambling Now Wednesday, March 2nd, 2011.

Traditional banking revenues: manifest destiny as forwarned - Weakening Revenue Streams in US Banks Will Make Them More Susceptible To Contingent Risks

Net interest income declined 13% y-o-y (-2% q-o-q) to $11.9bn versus $13.7bn in the previous year as interest income fell 7% to $15.6bn while at the same time interest expenses increased 19%. Interest income declined as a result of steep decline in yield on interest bearing assets despite a 2% y-o-y and 4% sequentially increase in interest bearing assets. Low interest rates and lower proportion of high yield assets have caused a strain on yield on interest bearing assets. The proportion of loans to interest bearing assets (high yield assets) have declined to 34% in Q1 2011 from 36% in Q1 2O10 and 39% in Q1 2O09 while at the same time proportion of Feb Funds rate (low yield assets) to interest bearing assets have increased.  Yield on interest bearing assets which is in a downward trajectory declined to 3.06% in Q1 2011 versus 3.35% in Q1 2010.

Interest expense increased to 19% as interest bearing liabilities increased 2% y-o-y while at the same time yield on interest bearing liabilities increased to 0.81% from 0.69%. Overall, the bank’s net interest margin declined to 3.1% in Q1 2011, the lowest since 2007 as low interest rate environment coupled with low risk appetite have taken a toll on banks net interest margin.

Again, I have warned of this occurrence as well. See my interview with Max Keiser where I explained how the Fed's ZIRP policy is literally starving the banks it was designed to save. Go to 12:18 in the video and listen to what was a highly contrarian perspective last year, but proven fact this year!

Provisions and charge-offs: I have been warning about the over-exuberant release of provisions to pad accounting earnings since late 2009!

Declines in provision was one of the major contributors to bottom line. JPMorgan reduced its provision for loan losses to $1.2bn (0.7% of loans) in Q1 2011 from $7.0bn (4.2% of loans) in Q1 2010 and from $3.0bn (1.8% of loans) in Q4 2010 while charge-offs declined to $3.7bn (2.2% of loans) in Q1 2011 from $7.9bn (4.4% of loans) in Q1 2010 and from $5.1bn (2.9% of loans) in Q4 2010. Although banks delinquency and charge-off rate has declined, the extent of decline in provisions is unwarranted compared to decline in charge-off rates. As a result of higher decline in provisions compared to charge-offs, total reserve for loan losses have decreased to 4.3% in Q1 from 5.3% in Q1 2010 and 4.7% in Q4 2010. At the end of Q1 the banks allowances to loan losses is lowest since 2009.

Although the reduction in provisions has helped the banks to improve its profitability it has seriously undermined the banks’ ability to absorb losses, if economic conditions worsen. As a result of under provisioning for the past five quarters, the banks Eyles test, a measure of banks’ ability to absorb losses, has turned to a negative 7.7% in Q1 2011 compared with +6.4% in Q1 2010. A negative Eyles test has serious implications to shareholders – the losses from banks could not only drain entire allowances for loan losses which are inadequate but can also wipe off c7.7% of shareholder’s equity capital. The negative value of 7.7% for JPM’s Eyles is the lowest in this downturn.

 

For those of you who believe the housing market has put in a bottom, JPM may be the company to believe in. For those a bit more grounded in reality, realize...

For those who still do not believe that the Fed's ZIRP is starving the banks, I strongly suggest reading Did Bernanke Permanently Cripple the Butterfly That Is US Housing? The Answer Is More Obvious Than Many Want To Believe Monday, March 28th, 2011, as excerpted:

Do Black Swans Really Matter? Not As Much as the Circle of Life, The Circle Purposely Disrupted By Multiple Central Banks Worldwide!!!, Bernanke et. al. have snipped the chrysalis of the US markets and economy one too many times. He has interrupted the circle of life...

I have always been of the contention that the 2008 market crash was cut short by the global machinations of a cadre of central bankers intent on somehow rewriting the rules of economics, investment physics and global finance. They became the buyers of last resort, then consequently the buyers of only resort while at the same time flooding the world with liquidity and guarantees. These central bankers and the countries they allegedly strive to serve took on the debt and nigh worthless assets of the private sector who threw prudence through the window during the “Peak” phase of the circle of economic life, and engaged in rampant speculation. Click to enlarge to print quality…

The result of this “Great Global Macro Experiment” is a market crash that never completed. BoomBustBlog subscribers should reference File Icon The Inevitability of Another Bank Crisis while non-subscribers should see Is Another Banking Crisis Inevitable?as well as The True Cause Of The 2008 Market Crash Looks Like Its About To Rear Its Ugly Head Again, With A Vengeance. All four corners of the globe are currently “hobbling along on one leg”, under the pretense of a “global recovery”.

Reminisce while traipsing through our real estate analysis and research:

  1. On Employment and Real Estate Recovery Monday, April 25th, 2011
  2. A First In The History Of Mainstream Media? NAR Is Identified As A Joke! Tuesday, March 29th, 2011
  3. The True Cause Of The 2008 Market Crash Looks Like Its About To Rear Its Ugly Head Again, With A Vengeance Friday, March 11th, 2011
  4. Reggie Middleton ON CNBC’s Fast Money Discussing Hopium in Real Estate Friday, February 25th, 2011
  5. Further Proof Of The Worsening Of The Real Estate Depression Thursday, February 24th, 2011
  6. In Case You Didn’t Get The Memo, The US Is In a Real Estate Depression That Is About To Get Much Worse Wednesday, February 23rd, 2011
  7. When Will the Mainstream Media Be Ready To Call The NAR The Sham That It Really Is? Tuesday, February 22nd, 2011
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Bloomberg reports S&P Downgrades Spain, Citing Region Backtracking on Bank:

Spain’s debt rating was cut to one level above junk by Standard & Poor’s, which cited euro-region peers’ backtracking on a pledge to severe the link between the sovereign and its banks as it considers a second bailout. The country was lowered two levels to BBB- from BBB+, New York-based S&P said in a statement yesterday. S&P assigned a negative outlook to the nation’s long-term rating and lowered the short-term sovereign level to A-3 from A-2.

The downgrade comes after Spain announced a fifth austerity package in less than a year and published details about stress tests of its banks. Creditworthiness concerns have grown since the government requested as much as 100 billion euros ($129 billion) in European Union aid in June to shore up its lenders and amid signals that the deficit target is in jeopardy.

CNBC adds:

Spain’s credit rating downgrade was necessary because of a deepening recession and the uphill battle the country faces in pushing through an unpopular reform program, Moritz Kraemar, managing director for European Sovereign Ratings at Standard & Poor’s told CNBC Thursday. S&P cut Spain’s credit rating to just one notch above junk late or BBB-minus on Wednesday with a negative outlook — the third cut this year — as the embattled country tries to fight off growing calls for a bailout. Spain expressed surprise at the downgrade claiming it was “unhelpful.”“Politically and socially the reform agenda is very difficult. This recession could keepunemployment up and intensify the social discontent and friction between Madrid and the regional governments,” he said.

Query: Why has this taken so long? Let's do this by the numbers...

Monday, 08 February 2010: I warned of the undeniable storm that was the Pan-European Sovereign Debt Crisis, with a specific note on Spain simply being a bigger Greece!!! This was TWO AND A HALF YEARS AGO!

 spain_vs_greece.png

March 30th, 2010: I forensically explained that Spain was essentially a default waiting to happen, in explicit detail via a report for paying subscribers - File Icon Spain public finances projections_033010

April 27th, 2010: I explicitly warned on Spanish bank sovereign exposure for paying subscribers: File Icon A Review of the Spanish Banks from a Sovereign Risk Perspective – retail.pdf and File Icon A Review of the Spanish Banks from a Sovereign Risk Perspective – professional

Fast forward roughly TWO YEARS and the rating agencies jump into the mix - yes, all after the fact... I penned S&P Downgrades Spain (After I Did) Two Notches ... as a response:

Of course, we all know how reliable and timely the rating agencies are, right? See Rating Agencies vs Reggie Middleton, Part 3 and the Interesting Documentary on the Power of Rating Agencies, with Reggie Middleton Excerpts. You can see the full video here, but only about half of it is in English. I appear in the following spots: 22:30 and 40:00... You really need to see this video if you haven't for nothing like this will ever get aired in the states, particularly right before presidential elections!!!

spain vs greece

Spain public finances projections 033010 Page 01Spain public finances projections 033010 Page 02Spain public finances projections 033010 Page 03Spain public finances projections 033010 Page 04Spain public finances projections 033010 Page 05Spain public finances projections 033010 Page 06Spain public finances projections 033010 Page 07Spain public finances projections 033010 Page 08spain vs greeceI

then

made clear that You Have Not Known Pain Until You've Seen The True Borrowing Costs Of Spain... -

Yes, I got carried away with this one... The Economic Bloodstain From Spain's Pain Will Cause European Tears To Rain... 

Let's peruse the first four pages of the report from issued to BoomBustBlog subscribers two years ago to see if this last minute downgrade to effectively junk could have been expedited or foreseen...

 

To prevent this post from getting too long, I will post the rest of this nearly three year report in my next rant on this topic. Note how this aged document has been more accurate than the rating agencies reports of today... Hmmm!!!!!

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When is the banking system going reboot? Start listening below at 10:40 to about 12:45 (or the whole thing if you want to hear how the Justice Department should take the bad banks down), then read on...

From American Banker:

'Yet Another Bank': One week after New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman filed a civil case against JPMorgan Chase alleging fraud in how Bear Stearns packaged and sold mortgage-backed securities, Wells Fargo finds itself being sued by the government for nearly a decade's worth of "reckless" mortgage lending. U.S. prosecutors (not affiliated with Schneiderman's mortgage task force, though he has promised more suits are on the way) are seeking "hundreds of millions of dollars" in civil damages from the bank on behalf of the Federal Housing Administration, alleging Wells "made false certifications" about the condition of their mortgage loans so that the government agency would insure them. FHA then had to foot the bill when the bank's alleged "mortgage factory" — Dealbook's interpretation of the complaint — output went belly up. "Yet another major bank has engaged in a longstanding and reckless trifecta of deficient training, deficient underwriting and deficient disclosure, all while relying on the convenient backstop of government insurance," United States attorney in Manhattan Preet Bharara said in a (perhaps obvious) statement.

The Times notes the lawsuits are being filed amidst public criticism of the Justice Department's lack of actual criminal action against banks and their executives regarding the housing boom.

Get the f2*k out of here! Really!!!???

Meanwhile, the Post notes the case is particularly problematic for Wells, which "has been hit with a series of civil actions" related to its mortgage business in recent years (and we would add, unlike JPMorgan, can't blame Bear Stearns for its latest problem). The bank is denying the most recent allegations, saying it acted in "good faith and in compliance" with federal rules.

This is what we saw in WFC 5 years ago, before most bothered to take noticw (rerference Doo-Doo bank drill down, part 1 - Wells Fargo - BoomBustBlog):

image040.pngimage040.png

This stress is real, and is already causing losses in the condo construction and sales markets, retail malls and now office buildings. Please see my primer and series on the Commercial Real Estate Crash and ongoing series of financial shenanigans and excessive debt issues of General Growth Properties for additional information.

image006.pngimage006.png

Sizeable Real Estate loans exposure in troubled markets:  Wells Fargo had $148 bn loan in 1-4 Family Mortgages (WFC has a high correlation to industry-wide losses) which represented nearly 38% of the banks’ total loan. Out of these loans nearly 51% comprised junior lien mortgage loans (much higher probability of total loss and no recovery)After C&D loans, real estate loans have highest NPAs as proportion of total loans.  In 4Q2007, real estate 1-4 family first mortgage NPAs to total loans stood at nearly 1.91% of total loans with total NPAs of $1.4 bn. In terms of geographic exposure, real estate loans from California and Florida comprised 33% and 4% of total real estate loans (i.e 13% and 2% of WFC’s total loan portfolio).

image003.png

This research and more  is available to all paying subscribers here, with a full set of charts, tables and graphics: File Icon WFC 1Q10_Review. Pro subscribers can also reference the full forensic report here: WFC Investment Note 22 May 09 - Pro. Retail subscribers should access it through the subscription content link in the main menu, under commercial and investment banks.

As for Jamie's house, as posted on Thursday, 21 June 2012 11:06

Does JPM Stand For "Just Pulling More" Wool Over Analyst's Eyes?

The latest Q2 qualitative observations for JPM are now available for all paying subscribers to download: JPM June 20 2012 Observations. This document contains a few interesting tidbits that, of course, you will get from nowhere else. For instance, did you know that the Q1 2012 financial results have many hidden secrets? We have looked at the Bank’s Q1 2012 financial results and have the following observations:

  • The Bank reported Q1 2012 revenues of $26.7 billion , an increase of $1.5 billion , or 6% , from the prior-year quarter. That sounds decent for a big bank in tough recessionary times, eh? However, the increase was primarily driven by a $1.1 billion benefit from the Washington Mutual bankruptcy settlement. Excluding this benefit, the revenues were almost the same as that in Q1 2011. With flat revenues like these, just imagine what could happen to the bottom line when a multi-billion dollar trading loss occurs.
  • The Bank had booked a loss on fair value adjustment of Mortgage Service Rights (MSR) in Q1 2011 of $1.1 billion. Hey, you know they just don't make those ephemeral, totally contrived 2nd order derivative products like they used to, eh?

Excluding the effect of the MSR loss along with the impact of gain from Washington Mutual bankruptcy, the bank’s Q1 2012 revenues actually decreased compared to Q1 2011.

Combine these secrets, derivative trading (oops, I mean hedging) losses and that bland ZIRP sauce that sucks profits in an increasingly expensive compensation landscape and you'll get one hell of a safe return for your 401k, right Mr Bove, et. al.? 

From the 2009 BoomBustBlog "I told you so" archives...

To wit regarding JP Morgan, on September 18th 2009 I penned the only true Independent Look into JP Morgan that I know of. It went a little something like this:

Click graph to enlarge

image001.pngimage001.png

Cute graphic above, eh? There is plenty of this in the public preview. When considering the staggering level of derivatives employed by JPM, it is frightening to even consider the fact that the quality of JPM's derivative exposure is even worse than Bear Stearns and Lehman‘s derivative portfolio just prior to their fall. Total net derivative exposure rated below BBB and below for JP Morgan currently stands at 35.4% while the same stood at 17.0% for Bear Stearns (February 2008) and 9.2% for Lehman (May 2008). We all know what happened to Bear Stearns and Lehman Brothers, don't we??? I warned all about Bear Stearns (Is this the Breaking of the Bear?: On Sunday, 27 January 2008) and Lehman ("Is Lehman really a lemming in disguise?": On February 20th, 2008) months before their collapse by taking a close, unbiased look at their balance sheet. Both of these companies were rated investment grade at the time, just like "you know who". Now, I am not saying JPM is about to collapse, since it is one of the anointed ones chosen by the government and guaranteed not to fail - unlike Bear Stearns and Lehman Brothers, and it is (after all) investment grade rated. Who would you put your faith in, the big ratings agencies or your favorite blogger? Then again, if it acts like a duck, walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, is it a chicken??? I'll leave the rest up for my readers to decide. 

This public preview is the culmination of several investigative posts that I have made that have led me to look more closely into the big money center banks. It all started with a hunch that JPM wasn't marking their WaMu portfolio acquisition accurately to market prices (see Is JP Morgan Taking Realistic Marks on its WaMu Portfolio Purchase? Doubtful! ), which would very well have rendered them insolvent...

... You can download the public preview here. If you find it to be of interest or insightful, feel free to distribute it (intact) as you wish. JPM Public Excerpt of Forensic Analysis Subscription JPM Public Excerpt of Forensic Analysis Subscription 2009-09-18 00:56:22 488.64 Kb

Recent Articles on JPM

Who Will Be The Next JPM? Simply Review The BoomBustBlog Archives For The Answer

Who Caused JP Morgan's Big Derivative Bust? The Shocker - Ben Bernanke!!!

 
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Tuesday, 28 August 2012 10:05

European Bank Run Watch: Spaniard Edition

As part of my ongoing series which I started in January of 2010 - Pan-European sovereign debt crisis, I detailed the rapidly developing financial malaise in Europe, detailing the risk to the larger more respected western European nations as well as their perceived profligate brethren to the south. One name popped up that analysts and media failed to harp on... Spain - at least back then. Now, people are wondering how Spain will handle its new found (at least to non-BoomBustBlog subscribers) funding crisis. To wit, and as excerpted from The Spain Pain Will Not Wane:

Professional subscribers can now actually download the original Spanish Bond Haircut Model that we used to calculate loss scenarios - Spain maturity extension_010610 (The Man's conflicted copy). Despite the fact I was probably the most realistically bearish out of the bunch, things have actually gotten materially worse since this model was constructed two years ago, hence it can use a refresh. Alas, it is still quite useful.

In the general subscriber document Spain public finances projections_033010, the first four (or 12) pages basically outline the gist of the Spanish problem today, to wit:

Spain_public_finances_projections_033010_Page_01Spain_public_finances_projections_033010_Page_01

Spain_public_finances_projections_033010_Page_02Spain_public_finances_projections_033010_Page_02

Spain_public_finances_projections_033010_Page_03Spain_public_finances_projections_033010_Page_03

Spain_public_finances_projections_033010_Page_04Spain_public_finances_projections_033010_Page_04

The stress caused by Spain breaking the central bank will bring to full fruition the theory behind our European Banking and Insurance research from the last few quarters. All would do well to remember (and re-read, if need be),

This research, although over 2 years old, has proved to be quite useful and prophetic, till this very day. Ask the editors at CNBC as they ran this story: Spain Recession Deepens as Austerity Weighs

Spain's economy shrank further in the second quarter of the year and a slump in domestic spending accelerated, signaling a protracted recession as the country presses on with efforts to slash its public deficit.

Spain's economy fell back into recession in the first quarter of the year, when output fell 0.3 percent, and government estimates show GDP will probably fall for this year and next year as it pushes through further measures aimed at slashing a bloated deficit.Gross domestic product fell by 0.4 percent in the second quarter of the year, according to final data that confirmed a preliminary reading. But on an annual basis it dropped by 1.3 percent, worse than initial estimates of 1.0 percent.

The data came a day after Spain said its economy performed less well than expected in both of the last two years.

On Tuesday, the National Statistics Institute, INE, also revised down 2011 fourth quarter GDP to -0.5 percent from -0.3 percent.

Close to record high borrowing costs and an economy showing little sign of picking up any time soon is nudging Spain closer to calling for a European bailout, which analysts say is only a matter of time.

Those that follow me know that I have been warning on Europe and its banking system years before the sell side and mainstream financial media (reference the Pan-European Sovereign Debt Crisis series).

Well, fast forward to today's CNBC headlines and you get: Spaniards Pull More Money Out of Banks in July. What a surprise, eh? As excerpted:

A rush by consumers and firms to pull their money out of Spanish banks intensified in July, with private sector deposits falling almost 5 percent as Spain was sucked into the centre of the euro zone debt crisis. Private-sector deposits at Spanish banks fell to 1.509 trillion euros at end-July from 1.583 trillion in the previous month.

Hmmm!!! How's that bank run thingy work again? Oh yeah, as excerpted from the prophetic piece from July 23, 2011 - The Anatomy Of A European Bank Run: Look At The Banking Situation BEFORE The Run Occurs! which detailed for my readers and subscribers the mechanics of the modern day bank run, particular as I see (saw) it occurring in Europe.

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Tuesday, 28 August 2012 09:48

European Bank Run Watch: Swiss Edition

 On July 23, 2011 I penned The Anatomy Of A European Bank Run: Look At The Banking Situation BEFORE The Run Occurs! which detailed for my readers and subscribers the mechanics of the modern day bank run, particular as I see (saw) it occurring in Europe.

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Those that follow me know that I have been warning on Europe and its banking system years before the sell side and mainstream financial media (reference the Pan-European Sovereign Debt Crisis series).

 A reader has convinced me to consult with him on a specific situation, regarding overseas monies and the (lack of) safety of those funds, which prompted me to dig up the Sovereign Contagion Model that we developed n 2010. In a nutshell, the Swiss banking industry was built upon impenetrable bank privacy for high net worth clients. Once the US decided it needed to boost its tax revenues during hard times, it literally collapse the Swiss hegemony in secret banking and left that banking industry to compete in actual banking versus asset concealment. This left Swiss banks naked, for they don't appear to me to truly be able to compete aggressively and successfully in other areas. 

Add to this mix potential contagion issues for the Swiss banking industry due to the fact that Switzerland has a veritable cornucopia of exposure all over the soon (if not already) serial recession ridden world, and well...

The first chart is raw contagion exposure as a % of GDP. The 2nd chart is the same exposure ran through our “reality” model. Food for thought.

The BoomBustBlog Sovereign Contagion Model

Nearly every MSM analysts roundup attempts to speculate on who may be next in the contagion. We believe we can provide the road map, and to date we have been quite accurate. Most analysis looks at gross claims between countries, which of course can be very illuminating, but also tends to leave out many salient points and important risks/exposures.

Description: foreign claims of PIIGSforeign claims of PIIGSforeign claims of PIIGS

In order to derive more meaningful conclusions about the risk emanating from the cross border exposures, it is essential to closely scrutinize the geographical break down of the total exposure as well as the level of risk surrounding each component. We have therefore developed a Sovereign Contagion model which aims to quantify the amount of risk weighted foreign claims and contingent exposure for major developed countries including major European countries, the US, Japan and Asia major.

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I.          Summary of the methodology

·         We have followed a bottom-up approach wherein we have first identified the countries/regions with high financial risk either owing to rising sovereign risk (ballooning government debt and fiscal deficit) or structural issues including remnants from the asset bubble collapse, declining GDP, rising unemployment, current account deficits, etc. For the purpose of our analysis, we have selected PIIGS, CEE, Middle East (UAE and Kuwait), China and closely related countries (Korea and Malaysia), the US and UK as the trigger points of the financial risk dissemination across the analysed developed countries.

·         In order to quantify the financial risk emanating in the selected regions (trigger points), we looked into the probability of the risk event happening due to three factors - a) government default b) private sector default c) social unrest. The probabilities for each factor were arrived on the basis of a number of variables determining the relative weakness of the country. The aggregate risk event probability for each country (trigger point) is the average of the risk event probability due to the three factors.

·         Foreign claims of the developed countries against the trigger point countries were taken as the relevant exposure. The exposures of each developed country were expressed as % of its respective GDP in order to build a relative scale for inter-country comparison.

·         The risk event probability of the trigger point countries was multiplied by the respective exposure of the developed countries to arrive at the total risk weighted exposure of each developed country.

·         Description: File Icon Sovereign Contagion Model - Retail - contains introduction, methodology summary, and findings

·         Description: File Icon Sovereign Contagion Model - Pro & Institutional - contains all of the above as well as a very detailed methodology map that explains what went into the model across dozens of countries.

The bank run in other European nations:

 

Related Pan-European Sovereign Risk Non-bank Subscription Research Archives

·         Ireland public finances projections_040710

·         Spain public finances projections_033010

·         UK Public Finances March 2010

·         Italy public finances projection

·         Greece Public Finances Projections

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http://usawatchdog.com - The stock market rallied on news the European debt crisis is on its way to being fixed, but is it really? Not a chance, says today's guest. Reggie Middleton of BoomBustblog.com says, "Europe is insolvent," and nothing is fixed. Middleton contends, "Collapse in Europe is absolutely unavoidable. It's a foregone conclusion." Why should you listen to this entrepreneurial investor? He has made many stunning calls. He said Bear Stearns was insolvent when its stock was trading for well over $100 per share. He warned about Lehman Brothers and predicted the financial crisis of 2008 long before they happened. Now, he says, "Europe is coming to the end of the road very soon," and a "system crash is the only way to fix the problem." Greg Hunter of USAWatchdog.com goes "One-on-One" with Reggie Middleton.

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Below is a graphic from 2 weeks ago... 

FB Sep 21 12 18 puts

Here's a snapshot of the situation as of today...

fb sep 12 18 puts

4x to 6x return on your money and all you had to do was follow BoomBustBlog in betting against the sell side salesmen of the Street. Hmmmm.... CNBC runs the following headlines today:

 I made it clear that this sitaution was virtually guaranteed. I felt so strongly about it that I made much of my opinion available for free this time.

 Here's where I broke it down on Capital Account

I also happened to do the same on the Max Kesier show...

I discussed Facebook on the Peter Schiff radio show, the Facebook excerpt is below...

Additional Facebook analysis, valuationa and commentary.

On Max Keiser, go to the 13:55 marker for more on Facebook...

It's not just the Facebook IPO, either. I warned heavily that snake oil salesman were out to get you with the Groupon offering as well, as I posted earlier this week - Muppets Get MASHED Once Again - Groupon …. Here's what the situation looks like graphically as of today...

grpn oct 12 4 puts

Double your money by shorting the Street's advice! Once Again!

Here is a full year of free blog posts and paid research material warning that ANYBODY following the lead of Goldman, Morgan Stanely and JP Morgan on the Facebook offereing would get their Face(book)s RIPPED!!! Could you imagine me on a reality TV show based on this stuff??? Well, it's coming...

  1. Facebook Registers The WHOLE WORLD! Or At Least They Would Have To In Order To Justify Goldman’s Pricing: Here’s What $2 Billion Or So Worth Of Goldman HNW Clients Probably Wish They Read This Time Last Week!
  2. Facebook Becomes One Of The Most Highly Valued Media Companies In The World Thanks To Goldman, & Its Still Private!
  3. Here’s A Look At What The Goldman FaceBook Fund Will Look Like As It Ignores The SEC & Peddles Private Shares To The Public Without Full Disclosure
  4. The Anatomy Of The Record Bonus Pool As The Foregone Conclusion: We Plug The Numbers From Goldman’s Facebook Fund Marketing Brochure Into Our Models
  5. Did Goldman Just Rip Its HNW and Institutional Clients Once Again? Facebook Growth Slows Pre-IPO, Just As We Warned!
  6. The World's First Phenomenally Forensic Facebook Analysis - This Is What You Need Before You Invest, Pt 1
  7. The Final Facebook Forensic IPO Analysis: the Good, the Bad & the Ugly
  8. On Top Of The 2x-10x Return Had Off Of BoomBustBlog Facebook Research, Our Models Show How Much More Is Available...
  9. Is Time For Facebook Investors To Literally Face the Book (Value)?
  10. Facebook Bubble Blowing Justification Exercises Commence Today
  11. Facebook Options Are Now Trading, Or At Least The PUTS Are!
  12. Reggie Middleton breaks down "Muppetology," Face Ripping IPO's, and the Chinese Wall!
  13. Facebooking The Chinese Wall: How A Blog Has Outperformed Wall Street For 5 Yrs
  14. Why Shouldn't Practitioners Of Muppetology Get Swallowed In A Facebook IPO Class Action Suit?
  15. Shorting Federal Facebook Notes Are Not Allowed Today ?
  16. As I Promised Last Year, Facebook Is Being Proven To Be Overhyped and Overpriced!

It would seem that Facebook Finally Faces The Fact Of BoomBustBlog Analsysis. Professional and institutional BoomBustBlog subscribers have access to a simplified unlocked version of the valuation model used for this report, available for immediate download - Facebook Valuation Model 08Feb2012. It is strongly recommended that said subscribers download and input their own assumptions into said model in order for confident preparation before the IPO launch! I just nominally input some very generous numbers and the best case scenario chart (see the chart tab after your own individual inputs) is quite revealing, indeed! The full forensic opinion is available to all subscribers here FaceBook IPO & Valuation Note Update. It is recommended that subscribers (click here to subscribe) also review the original analyses (file iconFB note final 01/11/2011).

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Last weak I posted a mail from a reader's rant on FICO (see Fair  Isaac May Get Treated Unfairly When…), along with our own take on the on the situation (subscribers see FICO Note). Well, said BoomBustBlogger is back with some more "unfair" treatment of Fair Isaac!

Dear Reggie,

Did you know it was Fannie who advised other banks to use FICO (back in 1995 I think)? That did not work too well.

I think that the FICO score is actually hollow somewhat, given that in 2006 the Median FICO score was 723 and deteriorating much since 2000 and not signaling an impeding crisis.

According to a Fitch study, the accuracy of FICO in predicting delinquency has diminished in recent years. In 2001 there was an average 31-point difference in the FICO score between borrowers who had defaulted and those who paid on time. By 2006 the difference was only 10 points. The bigger picture is that a massive collapse of lending can occur while all the lenders have used FICO, so what is the value proposition of using the scoring? I am known to ask annoying stupid question in my firm…

I think that FICO wasted cash on the stock buy back, it borrows at 6.1% and bought the stock at around 6 Free Cash Flow yield. Granted the cost of debt is pre-tax, but the arbitrage is poor, I think clearly it was a pump-so-the-management-can-dump scheme. This is the consumer picture in context, FICO was riding the consumer leverage bubble.

credit bubble 07

This is the revenue picture skewed since 2002 because of housing bubble. You can clearly see the take-off in revenues due to the housing bubble starting in 2002.

revenues pumped by real estate bubble

The recent beat of earnings is due the last calendar quarter of 2011 (when the stock buy-back was announced), 7 million of operating profit were due to slashing R&D, so earnings are up but if you slash R&D how do you grow? That should shield a compression of multiple not an expansion of those. Further the tools is more lumpy and not recurring, while the score business (recurring is flat).

So the latest quarter was actually showing EBIT down slightly in nominal dollars (down adjusted to inflation) YoY and EBIT margin down too YoY for same quarter, so the slashing of R&D did not result in higher margins YoY on the quarter. So you have probably 150 EBIT normalized excluding the one time R&D slashing. But the tools sales will bring volatility on teh downside in the downturn, those have been the reason for growing sales a bit, yet lower earnings, in the downturn those lumpy components should shrink. While the last 30 years was consumer leverage. Unlike 1929 where the leverage was on corporation this levered cycled falls squarely on the consumer and the Gov. The company trades at 13 Times EV/ Normalized EBIT which given the headwinds of necessary deleveraging, you might not want to pay more than 6-7 times, and the insiders know it and have sold into the share buyback giving 0 credibility to this buyback.

Now if you do not listen to the Fed which says that credit card conditions are easing (Fed is full of hot air http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-08-06/fed-says-banks-ease-standards-o...) and check from creditcards.com here is what they have to say. First the rate has been increasing in the last 2 years, so there is no easier credit for consumers. But then credit card companies are retrenching their offers.

If you read creditcards.com August 1st weekly report, here what they say:  (Would you send me your screen on consumer discretionary as a barter of idea?, even the abbreviate version without analysis that would be a fair trade of idea.)

Issuers also cut back on credit card mailings. The lack of movement comes at a time when issuers have also been pulling back on mailing new credit card offers to consumers. Prior to the recession, issuers flooded consumers' mailboxes with card offers and aggressively sought out new customers with a wide variety of credit scores. However, in 2009, issuers slashed the number of card offers they mailed by nearly two-thirds and primarily concentrated the offers they did send on consumers with excellent credit, say industry analysts. Since then, credit card mailings have yet to bounce back to pre-recession levels, according to data from the market research firm Mintel Comperemedia. Issuers did ramp up the number of card offers they sent in 2010 and 2011 and even began to send more offers to consumers with lower credit scores. However, issuers have since cut back significantly, say analysts at the international financial services firm Credit Suisse.
Citing research from Mintel Comperemedia, Credit Suisse analysts say that the number of credit card offers that consumers received in June is down by 43 percent, compared to the same time last year. June also marks the fourth month since January that the number of credit card mailings sent to consumers has declined.
The lower level of credit card mailings in 2012 contrasts significantly with 2011. Then, issuers sought out new customers aggressively, mailing out a total of 4.8 billion credit card offers throughout the year. By contrast, issuers have sent out just 1.5 billion offers in 2012, and analysts at Credit Suisse estimate that the total number of offers sent out by the end of the year will total just 3.5 billion.
If analysts' estimates hold out, then the number of credit card offers mailed in 2012 will be just slightly more than the number of credit card offers that were mailed in 2010. During that time, issuers were still just shaking off the effects of the recession and contending with new financial regulation, including the Credit CARD Act of 2009. Now, issuers are contending with a series of banking scandals, a financial crisis in Europe and a painfully slow U.S. economic recovery.

Sincerely,

Hope to exchange some more interesting ideas,

BoomBustBlogger!


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