Posts by The Trend Letter


At least 30 involved in VW diesel cheat

According to  German news service Seigel, at least 30 managers were involved in Volkswagen’s  emissions test cheating, German magazine Spiegel reported on Wednesday, citing internal and external investigations.

VW’s U.S. Chief Executive Michael Horn last week blamed “a couple of software engineers” for installing the software that defeated emissions tests and said it was not a corporate decision.

Volkswagen declined to comment on the Spiegel report.

Spiegel, citing preliminary results of probes by law firm Jones Day and Volkswagen itself, said the dozens of managers would be suspended.

It cited a person familiar with the matter as saying the circle of those found to have been involved and who knew about the cheating could widen further.

New VW CEO Matthias Mueller is expected to speak to top management on Thursday about the current state of the investigations and the strategic way forward.




Putin says US & Allies have “oatmeal in their heads”

Some of Russia’s international partners have “oatmeal in their heads” because they don’t understand clearly that its military campaign in Syria seeks to help the fight against terrorism, President Vladimir Putin said.

Russia notified the U.S. and the European Union in advance “out of respect” that it intended to begin airstrikes against Islamic State and other militants in Syria, Putin said at an annual conference organized by VTB Capital in Moscow on Tuesday. This showed Russia’s ready to cooperate on Syria, while nobody ever warned the authorities in Moscow about their operations, he said.

Russia’s military intervention “has changed the whole dynamic of the situation,” though it must not distract from efforts to find a political solution to the Syrian crisis, Staffan de Mistura, the United Nations envoy on Syria, said at talks with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in Moscow.

Putin’s colorful phrase, normally used to describe someone as confused, to characterize relations with the U.S. and its allies on Syria comes amid deep tensions over the Russian bombing campaign and cruise-missile strikes that began Sept. 30. The EU demanded on Monday that Russia stop targeting moderate groups opposed to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. U.S. Defense Secretary Ashton Carter warned that Russia’s actions “will have consequences” and the bombing “will only inflame” Syria’s four-year civil war.

Putin said Russia’s military and the U.S.-led coalition that’s also conducting missions over Syria are cooperating on air force communications and using friend-or-foe systems to avoid incidents. Russia proposed high-level talks in Moscow and is ready to send a large delegation to Washington to discuss a resolution of the Syrian crisis, he said.

‘No Answer’

Russia “received no answer” when it asked its international partners to provide information on terrorist targets in Syria, or to say at least where its planes shouldn’t bomb, Putin said. “It’s not a joke, I’m not making any of this up,” he said.

U.S. air drops of weapons and ammunition intended for the Syrian Free Army, which is fighting Assad’s regime, could end up in the hands of Islamic State instead, Putin said.
Russia’s very concerned at efforts by some states to delay the formation of a wider coalition against terrorists in Syria, Lavrov said. “We’re at a critical phase,” for a political resolution of the crisis, though more and more preconditions are being placed in the way, he said.

“While there is an acceleration of military activity, there should also be an acceleration on the political side,” and Russia should use its influence on the ground to promote a settlement, de Mistura said.

“I fully agree with you that there is no military solution to the conflict,” Lavrov said. “But fighting terrorists is something else and this doesn’t have any national boundaries.”
Russian planes flew 88 sorties, hitting 86 Islamic State targets, in the past 24 hours in Raqqa, Hama, Idlib, Latakia and Aleppo provinces in Syria, the Defense Ministry in Moscow said on Twitter.


Goldman Sachs calls for Oil capitulation

Goldman analyst Currie (see video link below), says that in the aftermath of over-production booms where easy credit has spurred wild-eyed speculation, durable price bottoms are not reached until ‘believers’ capitulate, throw in the towel on rebound bets, and finally move whatever capital they have left to the sidelines or other sectors. So far we have not seen this yet in the energy secotr, as every rally to date has brought another burst of hope–and production.

“The risk of $20 is driven by what we call a breach in storage capacity, meaning that you have supply above demand, you fill every storage tank on planet earth and then you have nowhere to put it,” Jeff Currie, head of commodity research at Goldman told CNBC from the annual Oil & Money conference in London.”(Then) supply has to come down in line with demand. The only way you get that correction is prices crash down to cash costs, which for a U.S. producer, is somewhere around $20 a barrel.” Jeff Currie, global head of commodities research at Goldman Sachs, says the risk of crude oil reaching $20 a barrel is driven by “breaching storage capacity.”
Click Here to see interview

Headlines – Oct 12/15

  • Wall St flat as investors wait for bank earnings. Read story
  • US dollar falls to three week low on rate-hike doubts. Read story
  • China stocks, Yuan jump in heavy trade on stimulus hope. Read story
  • Emerging markets urge Fed to raise rates & end uncertainty.  Read story
  • Bond market casualties leading biggest S&P revival since ’11. Read story
  • Oil slips from month highs as glut weighs. Read story
  • AB InBev raises SABMiller takeover bid to $103.6 billion. Read story
  • Dell to buy EMC for $67 billion. Read story
  • US pays three times more for drugs than UK.. Read story
  • Former China energy chief jailed 16 years for corruption. Read story
  • Turkish PM blames Ankara bombing on Islamic State. Read story
  • Hedge funds playing ‘Dangerous Game’ with Copper. Read story
  • Iran successfully launches long-range missile. Read story
  • On the lighter side. Check it out