Leo Haviland provides clients with original, provocative, cutting-edge fundamental supply/demand and technical research on major financial marketplaces and trends. He also offers independent consulting and risk management advice.

Haviland’s expertise is macro. He focuses on the intertwining of equity, debt, currency, and commodity arenas, including the political players, regulatory approaches, social factors, and rhetoric that affect them. In a changing and dynamic global economy, Haviland’s mission remains constant – to give timely, value-added marketplace insights and foresights.

Leo Haviland has three decades of experience in the Wall Street trading environment. He has worked for Goldman Sachs, Sempra Energy Trading, and other institutions. In his research and sales career in stock, interest rate, foreign exchange, and commodity battlefields, he has dealt with numerous and diverse financial institutions and individuals. Haviland is a graduate of the University of Chicago (Phi Beta Kappa) and the Cornell Law School.


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In recent years, there’s been a close linkage between trends in the S+P 500, commodities “in general”, and the United States dollar. Recent weakness in commodity currencies versus the US dollar coincides with and thus warns of continued declines in commodity benchmarks such as the broad Goldman Sachs Commodity Index and key stock indices such as the S+P 500. The worldwide economic crisis that erupted in 2007 has not been substantially solved.

The price and time trends of the commodity currencies from the US dollar cross rate perspective intertwine closely with key moves in stock and commodity benchmarks. Viewing them as a group, the five currencies soared higher against the US dollar from late 2008/early 2009 for over two years, until spring 2011/July 2011. Commodities in general and the S+P 500 made key bottoms in winter 2009 around the time of those in commodity currencies. The S+P 500 and the broad S+P Goldman Sachs Commodity Index (GSCI) then advanced dramatically for over two years.

In 2011, double tops in the commodity currencies (late April/early May; late July) link closely with the equity and commodity summits. The drops from late July 2011 are noteworthy because the S+P 500 subsequently fell decisively under the summer 2008 1265/1313 range (the financial crisis accelerated from around that 2008 time) and beneath the 4/26/10 top at 1220.

Many observers have faith that a substantial QE3 action will rally the S+P 500 (and commodities). Won’t history repeat itself? However, maybe history will refuse to do so, and stocks will climb very little before resuming their decline. Money printing is not a genuine repair policy for real economic problems. Despite the fearful Fed’s determination to maintain an extremely low Federal Funds rate, a renewed money printing enterprise also eventually may inspire interest rate jumps in US debt playgrounds.

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Commodity Currencies and Economic Cracks (9-12-11)