The 2012 Financial Olympics.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

As London prepares for the Greatest Show on Earth, Team Macro Man have been giving some thought to their own favourites for the 2012 Financial Olympics.

Sailing - It's going to be tough with so many competitors sailing so close to the wind this year. Barclays opted to do their own rigging, having allegedly refused the advice of their BoE advisors, however the sudden suicides of the team captain and cabin boy have left an opening for Iran's HSBC crew. With more storms forecast this year, we expect many of the field to be capsized. Team US-JPM have already spent billions on repairs having hit a whale.

Weight Lifting - The SNB is expected to challenge China's world record in reserve lifting with its attempt on 400 billion Euros, but such a tiny frame suffers serious risk of prolapse under such immense strain.

Judo - Elliott Associates is tipped to win for its skills in using other people's leverage and a strong understanding of the minutiae of the rules of the sport which has served them well in recent competitions.

100 meters - Facebook reached the 100 yard mark in record time but didn't quite manage the full 100 meters. Having thought they had won, they returned 30 meters back down the track and sat down moaning that the banks had guaranteed their victory.

Water Polo - Throwing a ball to each other in an outwardly civilised manner whilst underwater carrying out all sorts of dirty tricks, gives the world's reserve managers a huge advantage. The field is too evenly matched to call, though Sweden has been drowned before the competition even begins. Switzerland is protesting its innocence.

Synchronized Swimming - Paulson is the hot favourite having admirably demonstrated an unparalleled ability to hold his breath below high water marks over the past few years.

Cycling - Bill Gross's performance in the recycling of short bond calls had him tipped for gold, but having found to be using performance enhancing products when tested for derivatives, his inclusion in the team is debatable

Gymnastics - China have always excelled at this and their program this year looks to be the most creative yet with a completely new set of figures dreamed up especially for the event.

High Jump - Apple. Always beats the bar by a clear margin.

Decathlon - We'll go for Jim Rogers with his well practiced 10 commodity index components, although Jim really doesn't care what discipline he competes in as long as he wins GOLD.

Kayaking - The Greek team have excelled throughout the past 3 years, navigating the most extreme of rapids. Experts are left amazed that they are still afloat at this point in the competition despite their leaky craft, complete lack of leadership and large debts.

Equestrian Dressage - US Congress's ability to bore, parade around all dressed up with an air of over importance whilst not do anything vaguely substantial leaves them unparalled favourites.

Skeet Shooting - Germany's Weidmann is the obvious choice having proved himself to be able to shoot down any idea that is thrown up before it even leaves the ground.

Tennis doubles - FX dealers. Knowing the team orders of the opposition and exactly where they plan to play the ball gives them a clear advantage. Without it they wouldn't make the under 6's playground team.

Wrestling - Often accused of being scripted theatre, we rejoin the final that was never completed at Beijing 2008, China vs US. This tussle is centred upon US accusations of Chinese fixing and punching below the belt.

Fencing - Hugh Hendry. After being disqualified for sledging he has a new manager and has taken up fencing, hiding behind a mask and mindless jabbing away trying to hit anything at all.

Rowing - A sport requiring Herculean strength, endurance, precision, timing and coordination. So Europe to come last then. We tip Finland to win for its ability to look in one direction whilst going as fast as it can in the other.

Beach Volleyball - PIMCO. Who cares about results, it's the image that counts. G4S to come last.

Posted by Polemic at 12:38 PM  


TMM, bloggers being bloggers, can we see you washing your dirty laundry in public and have a post on Hugh Hendry only? What's your contention with him?

Anonymous said...
2:39 PM  

I quite like HH, but one gets the feeling that if he didn't exist, the BBC would have to invent him.

VandalsStoleMyHandle said...
3:30 PM  

HH is quite eloquent in his delivery

hey its a marketing game as well.. I'm pretty sure he's had inflows recently as the website say 900M AUM

abee crombie said...
4:58 PM  

TMM are not "of one mind" on Hendry. I guess its best to leave it at that.

Nemo Incognito said...
5:15 PM  

Abee, his recent comments tend to point that this is all for the gallery. He is a much more subdued person when meeting his investors.

Come on, TMM. The cat's out of the bag, open the curtains on the internal debate you have about HH.

Anonymous said...
5:23 PM  

HH is quite a character, clearly the sort who tends to polarize his audience, and he is exceedingly bright. LB has quite definitely enjoyed some of HH's stuff over the years ("I suggest you panic" was a good one, as was his excoriation of the cuddly Joe Stiglitz on the Beeb over Greece).

But there have been times when HH has been somewhat overcome with delusions of grandeur unbefitting a man who at one time was clearly managing a relatively modest asset base, and still has a penchant for occasionally talking complete and utter bollocks regarding the inevitability of deflationary collapse.

Sometimes he is just a daft sweaty*....

* Individual of Scots origin.

Leftback said...
5:57 PM  

Btw, LB feels compelled to point out that even though he is currently out of town in New England, he fancies that he can still detect a whiff of the aroma of singed bear fur on the breeze blowing from the South West, almost as though bears were being grilled or perhaps slowly roasted on the spit back in the sizzling City.

Leftback said...
6:01 PM  

> TMM are not "of one mind" on Hendry.

You know, when I read that TMM is going on holiday and we hear of one single holiday spot at least I am getting the impression that TMM is at the very least joined at the hip if not indeed of one mind. Particularly the grammatical gem "TMM are..." lends a borguesque quality to the whole thing.

> I guess its best to leave it at that.

Umm, would that be I or we? 8-)

Anonymous said...
10:03 PM  

Well, when we ( or TMM singular) penned this we didn t really think that it would lead to a dissection of the conjoined nature of our TMMness through grammatical error analysis and psychometric testing involving our schizophrenic tendencies towards one fund manager. But as we are here.. the above reference to hipjoining but not always single mindedness is fair. Though we would suggest a little more commonality by asking you to envisage Zaphod Beeblebrox, only with an extra head.

As for borguesque.. you have me/us, well this head at least, stumped on that ref.. i ll have to google it in a min.

As for HH.. LB best represented our overall 3 headed opinion.I now remember that the last post we did reffing him garnered similar comments. We promise from now on not to mention gold, euro break up, Apple products, HH or religion as they are all errrr.. religions. Can we still snipe Hero Zedge tho?

Can we change the subject back now and think up witty olympic sports to entrants matches before TMM is/are rent assunder by some HH logic feedback loop?

Yours a fast becoming more confused

Polemic said...
10:32 PM  

The Borg, Mr. P, is the reference, me thinks.
Not Bjorn, Star Trek.

Leftback said...
10:49 PM  

Ah thanks... was looking up italian renaissance papal families...

Polemic said...
10:55 PM  

Equestrian Dressage: surely the Eurogroup is the established world leader and clear favourite? It's been dressing up and parading around while achieving nothing substantial ever since the last Olympics.

Frances Coppola said...
8:50 AM  

Frances. Very valid point but we had to share the love of. the medals or the EU would be cleaning up. They kept appearing as top contenders in most classes.


Polemic said...
8:54 AM  

Surely someone can write something witty about ping-pong/the Risk On Risk Off trade?

Anonymous said...
10:28 AM  

Bravo Anon,

Algo traders to take gold in that one then!


CV said...
10:47 AM  

Might I suggest Mervyn King for the hammer throw, as he is really quite a spectacular tosser.

The Original said...
12:31 PM  

Global yields the clear favorite in the 10m platform dive, as they have descended gracefully without making any splash whatsoever.

The Fed will surely win the marathon, given that they anticipate being able to run at the same pace for the next 2-3 years.

Spain is likely to win in basketball, as the Bono market has shown a remarkable ability to thwart the best efforts of the European Dream Team.

the Original said...
1:13 PM  

say what you will about HH, if he really put a decent amount of his AUM into Japanese industrial CDSs sometime in '10 as he claims he did his AUM should be quite a bit higher than the reported number...

Anonymous said...
1:27 PM  

MERVE! thankyou for that well observed suggestion. TMM are putting it through their models to scan it for logic errors..... Nope,looks fine...

As for Spain. And can add their yields look like basketball score lines

Polemic said...
1:41 PM  

The market has got away from me..big style!.....if\when statements flying around thick and fast within the macro synapses...

Pavlovs team have decided not to wait for any no-mansland range to be created before lift've got to be kidding!

Nah...I've missed the run-up and, decided not to chase.

Therefore it's back to the gym, sorry the races!

ps.....Ahh,how wonderful they are to give me that's good.

amplitudeinthehouse said...
4:25 PM  

This is one of your all-time best posts.

Anonymous said...
7:03 PM  

Anon.. thank you!

Polemic said...
7:37 PM  


LB missed most of the New Year rally, wasn't focused, didn't chase, but was luckier this time around. Catching turns is a synthesis of one's state of mind and one's current macro/FX models, I think. Sometimes your model has you doing one thing when your gut tells you something else. When that happens I usually do nothing.

Right now my model and a lot of charts are saying stay long or take some off, but don't short. My gut feeling says we should do nothing at all in a quiet market, stay long and wait for big moves to fade. Obviously my instinct here is to expect upside moves on upside surprises. For example, expectations for US GDP tomorrow are quite dismal, but energy stocks and crude haven't been acting that way this week, which makes me go hmm...

Leftback said...
8:10 PM  

Apologies, we meant next week, not tomorrow..... we blame the humidity, affecting neural circuits....

Leftback said...
8:44 PM  

SEPM, aka anonymous of 10:03 PM is back here...

> Though we would suggest a little more commonality by asking you to envisage Zaphod Beeblebrox, only with an extra head.

Aha, that makes sense, but only thanks to actually having spent quite a few years in the UK.

While I have followed your reporting from the actual trenches for years it has only been passively through a RSS feed so not all details were immediately apparent.

May one inquire as to the wellbeing of the original MM? I miss the poetry and the Sherlock Holmse-ian adventures. Looking through blog I see the last farewell was in May 2010, how time flies. His new blog, "Diary of an Impatriate" has been quiet for 2 years now.

Anonymous said...
9:40 PM  

The original MM is never far away and is in fine fettle and no doubt will even be reading this and acknowledging, with wistful smile, your lament over the passing of his Sherlock and the Poetry. We have a crack at poems now and again, as you may have seen if you have started leafing through the archive, but they will never be up to the masters standard. Sorry.

Polemic said...
9:50 PM  

10m synchronised diving. Paulson funds and reputation.

Anonymous said...
2:13 AM  

Michael Johnson in the pundit's seat, providing a reality check for everyone.

Read Ray Dalio always managing to get it right.

Anonymous said...
2:20 AM  

Cycling team sprint. Every rider and bike one after the other, slick, streamlined, looks incredible, round and round with no brakes.


Anonymous said...
2:27 AM  

Heavyweight Boxing. Banks vs Regulators

Anonymous said...
2:29 AM  

Cliff Diving.

My portfolio, this morning...

Leftback said...
2:58 PM  


> The original MM is never far away and is in fine fettle

Good to hear. I never really expected him to keep this quiet, he seemed like someone with much to tell. Also, from my own experiences, once you return home after many years abroad your own country seems a little odd.

> We have a crack at poems now and again, as you may have seen if you have started leafing through the archive, but they will never be up to the masters standard. Sorry.

Oh, but I do appreciate your efforts, and the whimsical qualities of life in general. I do miss Sherlock though. Or perhaps "Dempsey and Makepeace" is more appropriate with the US-UK link and lots and lots of collateral damages. I can see Merkel starring here...

Anonymous said...
8:03 PM  

C says'
In the 100 million tax evasion race I have the Italians down has hot favourites which is not an indirect reference to the 40 deg temp in Florence last week.

In the corporation tax relay it looks like a deadheat between France and Spain with the "dead" definitely being a reference to corporate futures in those countries.

Anonymous said...
10:49 AM  

Sentiment very bearish again. Renewed Eurpocalypse calls. Shorting bans.

Time for Mangler to get her finger out and call the printers, or there will be nothing much left standing in Southern Europe for the Germans to buy with their neue DM.

Schnell, Angela, Schnell ! Man muß manchmal etwas schwierig tun....

Bears Are Back in Town

Leftback said...
3:12 PM  

LB - how many more false starts to the 'Europe is cheap' marathon til the Kevlar team has to take its ball and go home in Linford Christie fashion?

It is truly brutal out there.

Dee Dee Humberside said...
4:25 PM  

Good one, DD, had forgotten that moment of British sporting bathos. Up there with the Beckham petulant kick and sending off. We won't discuss all the penalties...

Look, DD, fair enough - that is all very reasonable criticism, in your comment today. LB's FX-based model cracked this week as we didn't see the Rationality v Idiocy Index (EUR/JPY) descending below 95, and we awoke to the uniquely unpleasant and acrid aroma of slowly burning portfolio (smells like burning tires).

The thing is, with all the ZIRPs and NIRPs floating around out there, and all these 6 sigma days of late, we can only continue to cling to the principle of mean reversion and find businesses across Europe that generate cash flow under the assumption that they might still be there next year, doing business in Europe. After The Big Print.

No axe to grind here, British living in the US, but just trying to see things as they are, or more accurately as they will be, without all the emotion, politics and prejudice against all things "socialist" and EU that often clouds the view of many investors, especially here in NY.

Leftback said...
5:15 PM  

C says'
Re looking in Europe I'd prefer to look where currency adjustment and competitive strength go together as opposed to companies in countries where outperformance is only going to reward the state tax system first and shareholders a distant second.iconfro 584

Anonymous said...
5:25 PM  

LB. Lest I am misunderstood, I wasnt poking fun or anything. I am going through the same sould searching exercise at the moment (albeit less painful than the IBEX type plays given the heavy credit focus ... still ain't pretty).

Hopefully there is a Stuart Pearce '96 moment waiting for us all TWINE people at the end of the tunnel.

Dee Dee Humberside said...
6:11 PM  

No offence taken at all. We're all grinding through this thing in our own way.

Just watched that penalty video again, he was called "Psycho" for a reason ... oh yeah, the relief of tension often sparks far more visceral celebrations than the pure joy of victory.

Leftback said...
6:27 PM  

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