Global stocks hit 5-1/2 year lows

HONG KONG (Reuters) - A rout in Asia pushed world stocks to their lowest in 5- years on Thursday, while oil fell to below $53 a barrel and safe havens such as the yen gained as economic data indicated a global recession could get even uglier.

Central banks may respond with another wave of rate cuts. The U.S. Treasury two-year yield hit a record low at one point, while other regional bonds such as in Japan surged amid the turbulence.

Investors are bracing for tough conditions ahead after the latest bearish signals for the global economy: The Federal Reserve slashed its U.S. growth forecasts, U.S. consumer prices fell at a record pace last month, and Japan's October exports fell by the most in seven years.

The bleak outlook, which is hitting sectors from South Korean chip makers to U.S. auto makers, comes amid renewed worries about the financial system. Citigroup shares tumbled to a 13-year low on Wednesday as investors questioned its survival prospects on concerns about mounting losses from credit cards, mortgages and toxic debt.

"Everybody is accepting the fact that we are in for a prolonged global recession and we are seeing a lot of pullbacks," said Lucinda Chan, a division director with Macquarie Equities in Australia.

Like dominoes, Asian markets fell a day after U.S. stocks hit their lowest in more than five years. The MSCI All-Country World Index fell 1.2 percent as of 0330 GMT (10:30 p.m. EST on Wednesday), having hit its lowest level since May 2003.

Japan's Nikkei average dropped 5 percent, below the key technical level of 8,000 points for the first time in three weeks.

South Korean and Hong Kong shares tumbled more than 5 percent, while markets in Sydney, Singapore and Taiwan fell more than 3 percent each.

More broadly, the Asia-Pacific ex-Japan MSCI index was down nearly 5 percent.

Expectations for a sharp slowdown sent oil prices down for a fifth consecutive session, and down 83 cents to $52.79.

"The lack of any positive news on the demand front as well as continued global economic turmoil continue to result in a dearth of bullish news," said Jonathan Kornafel, Asia director of Hudson Capital Energy.

Oil on Wednesday fell to its lowest settlement since late January 2007 for a commodity that just in July hit a record high at about $147 a barrel.

STAYING SAFE

Investors are finding plenty to worry about. Federal Reserve officials on Wednesday pared their outlook for growth in the world's biggest economy to minimal levels and appear poised to cut interest rates further.

The weaker forecast came on a day in which data showed U.S. consumer prices in October posted their biggest drop since monthly records began in 1947, sparking concerns about a deflationary spiral.

The sharply weaker global growth bodes ill for Asian economies that need healthy overseas demand for their products. Japan on Thursday said exports logged their biggest annual decline in seven years in October.

Regional bonds were highly sought as investors looked for relative safety. The 10-year Japanese government bond yield fell 2 basis points to 1.445 percent after dropping earlier to 1.430 percent, the lowest since early October.

Expectations that the Fed could cut rates next month sent the two-year Treasury yield to a record low of 1.0685 percent in early Asian trade, according to Reuters data. By midday in Tokyo it was at 1.093 percent, up 2 basis points from late U.S. trading on Wednesday.

Risk aversion also kept the yen and the dollar firm on Thursday. Safe-haven capital flows have benefited the Japanese currency as investors, in times of stress, tend to sell assets financed with the cheaply-borrowed yen.

The dollar was up 0.1 percent at 95.83 yen, slightly above a one-week low of 95.66 yen hit on Wednesday. The euro inched up 0.2 percent against the yen to 119.80 yen, also a tad above a one-week low.

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Former President Barack Obama sat down with CNN's Anderson Cooper recently for an interview scheduled to air in full on Friday. During the interview, Obama scoffed at the idea that critical race theory could be a "threat to our Republic," while claiming that "right-wing media venues" are "stoking the fear and resentment of a white population."

On the radio program Wednesday, Glenn Beck set the record straight: the right-wing media's efforts to call out the far-left have nothing to do with race in America, but rather everything to do with protecting our way of life that is being threatened more and more each day by the radical, Marxist ideology seeping into government.

"Mr. Obama, you lied," Glenn asserted. "You used the IRS to hunt down your enemy. You spied on the media. And your health care package, which was supposed to save every American $3,000 per year, has helped some, perhaps, while raising the cost of everyone's health care in double and triple percentages. But the worst thing that you did, is you planted, you watered, and you protected the Marxist seeds, by crying race."

Watch the video clip below to hear more from Glenn:

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Our sacred republic has never been in more danger than it is today. Little by little, industry by industry, the far Left is fundamentally transforming the country we love. And it's an aggressive, hostile kind of takeover we've only seen in some of the world's darkest societies.

On Glenn TV this week, Glenn Beck exposes how the Biden administration and Democrats are aggressively scrambling to reset everything: our free and fair voting system, our kids' education, our policing, immigration and border security, our economy, our military, and our energy supply.

Finally, Congressman Dan Crenshaw (R-Texas) joins to discuss how Biden's "woke" policies are threatening America's national security and our way of life.

Watch the full episode below:

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Apparel company The North Face recently stated that it would no longer make jackets for oil and gas companies because it doesn't want to be associated with the fossil fuel industry. In response, Colorado-based oil and gas company Liberty Oilfield Services rented full billboard ads to remind The North Face of the truth: "Globally, 60% of all clothing fibers are made out of oil and gas. For North Face, it is likely 90% or more."

Liberty CEO Chris Wright joined Glenn Beck on the radio program Tuesday to discuss just how much of our economy — beyond outdoor apparel and energy — wouldn't exist in a world without fossil fuels. And he warns that many companies are now deeming this truth to be "controversial."

"I have been for years, trying to get a real, honest dialogue about energy going," Chris told Glenn. "So we took this opportunity to point out that North Face jackets are ... almost completely made out of oil and gas. How can you choose not to associate with the essential material your equipment [is] made out of? So we put a billboard up ... the billboard says, 'That North Face puffer looks good on you. And it was made from fossil fuels.'"

"Most billboard companies did not want to run that billboard. They thought it was controversial," he added. "And Facebook put a hold on our brief video just saying the jacket looks good, this is what it's made out of. In today's world, that is controversial."

Watch the video below to catch more of the conversation:

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During a lecture at the Yale School of Medicine's Child Study Center, a New York City-based psychiatrist told students and faculty that she fantasizes about "unloading a revolver into the head of any white person that got in my way," among several other shockingly race-hating statements.

In April, Dr. Aruna Khilanani — a New York-based forensic psychiatrist and psychoanalyst — delivered the talk called "The Psychopathic Problem of the White Mind" virtually as part of the Yale School of Medicine's "Child Study Center Grand Rounds," a lecture program for "trainees in child psychiatry, psychology, and social work, faculty, clinicians, and scientists."

On the radio program Monday, Glenn Beck shared several quotes from an audio recording of the lecture provided by Bari Weiss, a former opinion writer and editor for the New York Times.

Here are a few of Khilanani's statements from the audio:

  • "This is the cost of talking to white people at all. The cost of your own life, as they suck you dry. There are no good apples out there. White people make my blood boil."
  • "I had fantasies of unloading a revolver into the head of any white person that got in my way, burying their body, and wiping my bloody hands as I walked away relatively guiltless with a bounce in my step. Like I did the world a f***ing favor."
  • "White people are out of their minds. And they have been for a long time."
  • "White people feel that we are bullying them when we bring up race. They feel that we should be thanking them for all that they have done for us. They are confused, and so are we. We keep forgetting that directly talking about race is a waste of our breath."
  • "We are asking a demented, violent predator who thinks that they are a saint or a superhero, to accept responsibility. It ain't gonna happen. They have five holes in their brain. It's like banging your head against a brick wall. It's just like sort of not a good idea."

"We must take a stand. We must speak out, because this is evil," Glenn said in response to Khilanani's shocking lecture. "I don't care who you voted for, you know this is evil."

Watch the video below for more details:

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