Need to Know: Get your affairs in order because this rare technical signal is flashing red

An earlier version of this column incorrectly reported the death of David Attenborough.

20thCentFox/Courtesy Everett Collection

The global economy is on the ‘Titanic’

The U.S. dollar, which has been under pressure since late last year, is coming off its best week of the 2016. While it wasn’t exactly a huge move, it was enough to delivered a hit to currency traders, who had started the week loaded up on short positions to a degree not seen in almost two years.

In other words, it was finally a great week to be a dollar contrarian.

Marc Chandler of Brown Brothers Harriman says “the key issue facing the foreign exchange market is whether the modicum of strength the U.S. dollar demonstrated last week is the beginning of a sustainable move.” Read his full weekly preview.

The potential impact of the healing greenback on a fragile stock market is something traders will keep their eye on as we exit a mostly downbeat earnings season.

Dollar aside, there’s an ominous technical signal lurking in the shadows, according to the Northman Trader blog, which recently called for the market to break from its range with a big move one way or another. Is now the time?

“Something happened Friday that’s happened only twice in over 20 years on the $SPX: The weekly 100-day moving average has crossed over the weekly 50-day moving average,” the blogger said. “The last two times this happened carnage followed.”

Maybe Albert Edwards is on to something, after all (more on him below).

Key market gauges

Stocks are looking to start the week on positive footing with futures on the Dow YMM6, +0.26%  and the S&P ESM6, +0.27%  nudging higher. Gold GCM6, -1.35%  is also gaining ground. Asia markets ADOW, -0.40%  closed in the green while Europe SXXP, +1.22%  is holding steady in the early part of its session. Crude CLM6, +1.30%  will be eyed closely today after the ousting of longtime Saudi oil minister Ali al-Naimi. Oil futures are up. The dollar DXY, +0.16%  is pushing a lot higher against the yen.

The quote

“There is no value in preparing for the ‘total disaster’ scenario if you live in the developed world. No one wants to poison their own prosperity, and so the rich and powerful hold back from being too rapacious.” — David Merkel, in a timely blog post entitled, “You can get too pessimistic.”

The buzz

Today marks the two-year anniversary of Netflix’s NFLX, +1.64% rate hike for its streaming service. Existing members were given two years to be locked in at the original rate, but that’s expired. What happens next could be critical for Netflix’s business.

The details of some 200,000 offshore accounts are said to be revealed at 11 a.m. Eastern today when the Panama Papers are unleashed in a searchable database.

Looks like Uber and Lyft are bailing out of Austin. The two companies threatened to leave if a vote over ride-sharing rules didn’t deliver the result they wanted. It turns out 56% of voters rejected a rule that would have prevented the city from demanding fingerprint-based background checks. Now Uber and Lyft say they are shutting down their operations today.

The chart

The Visual Capitalist blog crunched some numbers from Haynes and Boone LLP to put together this graphical representation of the carnage in the oil patch. This is what happens when low energy prices slam into overleveraged companies. As you can see, 11 new bankruptcies in April combined for a debt load of almost $15 billion, bringing the total for the year to $17.1 billion. Bankruptcies for all of 2015 had a debt load of $17.2 billion.

The call

In light of recent action, SocGen’s longtime uber bear Albert Edwards has had an unthinkable change of heart. Just kidding. Everything is about to go under, according to his latest weekly update. He said the global economy is the Titanic, and, dollar weakness aside, it’s about to sink below “the icy waves.” He says this whole mess will end as the stock market “spirals into a deep bear market,” as “corporate bond spreads explode” and amid deeply negative interest rates, trade wars, helicopter money,etc. “In a nutshell, it ends badly.” Other than that, everything’s fine.

The economy

The Fed releases its monthly Labor Market Conditions Index at 10 a.m. Eastern, but that’s about it for the day in terms of data. Retail sales on Friday is probably the most notable report in a relatively quiet week on the economic front. Read: Two-faced economy harder to read.

The stat

$38,000 — That’s how much the world’s most expensive one-way ticket costs.

Etihad

Better start saving!

Random reads

The idea of providing a basic income for all is getting “astonishingly strong support.”

Happy birthday David Attenborough.

Girl gets banned from her prom for wearing a tux.

Probably best not to skimp on your Everest guide.

Suicides drop in Russia just as they rise in the United States.

The UAE’s potential approach to making it rain: a mountain, naturally.

And you wouldn’t know it from trolling through the comments section on our site, but here’s an interesting poll on Obama:

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