Greece draws up €7.3bn tax hit list aimed at oligarchs and criminals – report

Crackdown on tycoons and the smuggling industry is part of fiscal reforms to be presented to creditors on Monday, German tabloid Bild says

Analysis: why Greece has its work cut out

Greece has drawn up a €7.3bn tax hit list aimed at the country’s oligarchs and lucrative smuggling industry, a German newspaper said, as part of reform proposals due to its creditors.

European finance ministers on Friday gave Athens just over three days to draw up a list acceptable to its international creditors in exchange for a four-month extension of its debt bailout.

Related: Greece scrambles to finalise fiscal reform list

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Alan Greenspan Warns: There Will Be a “Significant Market Event… Something Big Is Going To Happen”

Submited by Mac Slavo via,

With the Federal Reserve printing trillions upon trillions of dollars to keep the economic system afloat, many investors and financial pundits have surmised that the fundamental economic problems facing the United States during the crash of 2008 have been resolved. Stocks are, after all, at historic highs.

But the insiders know different. And if there’s any single person out there who understands U.S. monetary policy and its long-term effects on domestic and global affairs it’s former Federal Reserve chairman Alan Greenspan. As the head of the world’s most powerful central bank for nearly two decades he’s privy to the insider conversations and government machinations that have brought us to where we are today.

Greenspan recently joined veteran resource analyst

Republicans To Investigate NASA Over Climate Data Tampering

With record heat (and drought) in the west and record cold (wet and snow) in the east, the global warming game-playing continues every day but the climate-gate rhetoric has increased vociferously since we first noted three weeks ago, the data that has been so relied upon to 'prove' global warming's trend was in fact manipulated. What The Telegraph called “the most extraordinary scandal of our times” – that of the “seasonally-adjusted” seasonal raw global temperature data – is about to be investigated by Congress. As Daily Caller reports, California Republican Rep. Dana Rohrbacher exclaimed “expect there to be congressional hearings into NASA altering weather station data to falsely indicate warming & sea rise.”

This began, as The Telegraph previously noted, with claims that the underlying data used to justify practically every study p[roving global warming has, in fact, been manipulated…

Although it has been emerging for seven years or more, one of the most extraordinary scandals of our time has never hit the headlines. Yet another little example of it lately caught my eye when, in the wake of those excited claims that 2014 was “the hottest year on record”, I saw the headline on a climate blog: “Massive tampering with temperatures in South America”. The evidence on Notalotofpeopleknowthat, uncovered by Paul Homewood, was indeed striking.

This Won’t End Well

With the S&P 500 now in positive territory for the year and the mainstream media back in normal cheerleading mode, it is worth noting that 1) “Most shorted” stocks have outperformed the broad market this year, 2) the last 3 weeks have seen the biggest short squeeze in almost 4 years, and 3) Hedge funds are now at a record high 57% net long. We suspect, given the looming Humphrey-Hawkins and March FOMC and the short-term 'gap' between the market and fun-durr-mentals, volatility will be on the rise again.

The “Most Shorted” stocks outperformed the broad market in 2015 so far…

Trickle-Down QE

Everyone’s heard of trickle down economics, but how about “trickle down QE”?

The concept is basically the same, you just have to replace the people in the equation with bonds, an abstraction which isn’t difficult for bulge bracket banks to make, as subjugating the human element to dollars and cents has been unspoken corporate policy for decades. Just as tax breaks, etc for businesses and high earners are expected to ultimately benefit middle and low income households in trickle down economics, in trickle down QE, the liquidity injected into the system via central bank purchases of sovereign and IG corporate debt is expected to ultimately benefit high yield spreads.

Of course, this is really just another way of repeating what everyone has been saying for the last half decade: central bank largesse forces investors into risk assets by driving down yields on any asset class that could be even remotely construed as “safe.” Fortunately for those of us who are bored with buying plain vanilla equities and dabbling in HY cash credit to get our yield fix, the unique character and scope of Draghi-style easing presents investors of an adventurous disposition with an opportunity to capitalize on trickle down QE via an exciting foray into synthetic credit.

Without further ado, here’s Citi to explain how a hypothetical credit strategist will visit your fictional office and use the concept of trickle down QE to convince an imaginary you to go long euro HY credit via synthetic exposure to Crossover mezz tranches (you can’t make this stuff up):

The argument which finally convinced us that high yield is an attractive long is the potential of ECB QE to “trickle down” all the way to high yield…