Posts Tagged ‘QE3’

Notes From Underground: Will Tomorrow’s Unemployment Provide Certainty?

May 7, 2015

MAYBE. It’s the release of the most important economic data for market watchers, the unemployment report. The JOBS NUMBERS have taken on added importance as the FED has made its data dependent interest rate decision overly reliant on job growth and more importantly, AVERAGE HOURLY EARNINGS. Last month’s nonfarm payrolls were well below expectations and the market reacted in a HOLIDAY-SHORTENED trading session (Good Friday) with a rally in all ends of the interest rate market and the U.S. dollar being sold in response to a FEDERAL RESERVE remaining at the zero interest rate level for longer than previously anticipated.

(more…)

Notes From Underground: The FOMC Is a Meaningless Statement

October 29, 2014

Why do I say this? As expected, the FOMC ended QE3 and left in the forward guidance of “considerable time.” Some analysts believe that the balance of the statement was HAWKISH because the phrase of  “significant underutilization of labor resources” to “underutilization of labor resources is gradually diminishing.” The problem is that Chair Yellen has adopted the Labor Market Conditions Index (LMCI) and its 19 variables so without a press conference or until we read the FOMC minutes we have no basis for the change in “significant underutilization” language. The lack of a press conference left investors dazed and confused because there was no explanation for the Fed’s decision. In September we heard about the headwinds of global slowdowns and a strong dollar, but there is no a word about GLOBAL HEADWINDS in the Fed’s statement.

(more…)

Notes From Underground: The Swedes Plumb the Interest Rate Depths

October 29, 2014

First, I will say it again. QE3 is over and the Fed will maintain its “forward guidance” and be data dependent. The next bout of important data will be the U.S. unemployment release on November 7, which buys the Fed one more month of doing nothing. James Bullard painted the FED into a tight corner when he PANICKED and said the FED may want to refrain from removing QE3 while the SPOOs and other equity markets were at a 10 percent correction low. Bullard revealed that the Fed’s REACTION FUNCTION is the equity markets and of course Chairman Yellen’s concern about the lag in wages. The two key variables for the Fed have both been steady since the last meeting. The spoos are lower by 0.75 percent while the September unemployment report showed wage gains had no increase.

(more…)

Notes From Underground: Good Trading Advances One Funeral At A Time (Thanks, Max Planck)

July 23, 2013

When Max Planck opined that “Science Advances One Funeral At A Time” it is believed that he meant that when proponents of long-held theories die, science is allowed to advance. In terms of trading I have applied this to mean that long-held losing trades have died a death due to lack of liquidity to support a flawed analysis. The BOND MARKET is going to provide the opportunity to put the wit of Planck to work as we try to examine the ways in which the FED will deal with the vast amount of reserves with which it has flooded the financial system. As traders and investors, the FED‘s decisions will impact the entire spectrum of the GLOBAL MACRO WORLD. Therefore, it is time to embark on thinking about ways the FED can remove reserves in the least disruptive and to anticipate what plans the central bank may have.

(more…)

Notes From Underground: Volcker Finds His Voice

June 4, 2013

Ex-FED Chairman Paul Volcker delivered a speech on May 29, which served as a “shofar” blast, warning the FED and its governors to be cautious in possibly undermining the credibility that all central bankers strive to maintain. Mr. Volcker does not doubt the intelligence of Chairman Bernanke  but what he worries about “… is a matter of good judgment, leadership and institutional backbone” (READ THAT AGAIN). “A willingness to act with conviction in the face of predictable political opposition and substantive debate is, as always a requisite part of a central bank’s DNA.” Now, knee-jerk FED supporters (insert name here) will maintain that is what Bernanke did in presenting QE1, QE2 and QE3–but he certainly had the support of a democrat-controlled HOUSE and SENATE in 2010. Also, the White House was a fervent supporter of massive monetary stimulus as he helped keep the economy from sliding into a chaotic state of asset liquidation. The FED may have suffered the barbs of some “tea party” legislators but for the most part the major powers in Washington and Wall Street provided the needed support for the FED.

(more…)

Notes From Underground: Clarifying the IMF

October 15, 2012

It seems that yesterday’s piece on the IMF left more questions than answers. The point of the IMF moving to break the adverse (negative) feedback loop in the economies of Europe and the impact of austerity budgets results in greater deficits as the economy affected experiences negative economic growth rates, which creates greater deficits. As my readers are well aware, budget deficits can increase by slowing growth as well as increased expenditures. The IMF economic models have used a 0.5% impact on proscribed fiscal retrenchment. The IMF has used that 0.5% number for 30 years. As the IMF has studied the European nations and other countries during the recent Great Recession, it seems that the organization’s models are flawed and the impact is far greater, resulting in ever greater deficits amid less economic growth. The IMF believed that for ever 1% drop in government budgets the result would be a drop in GDP of that beloved 0.5%–the multiplier that the models use.

(more…)

Notes From Underground: The Significance of the WSJ OP-ED Piece … “Magnitude of the Mess We’re In”

September 23, 2012

A an op-ed piece in last weeks WSJ created a great deal of buzz in the financial media. Appearing a few days after the aggressive move by the FED, the opinion piece written by five eminent economists–George Schultz, Michael Boskin, John Cogan, Allan Meltzer and John B. Taylor–criticizes the Bernanke Fed’s QE policy from many different aspects. It is not the criticism that is significant but rather the stature of the economists that are calling the question of the FED’s continued one-dimensional response to the tepid growth following the deep recession of 2007-2008. The media would have the public believe that the only economists qualified to theorize on the problems at hand are those chosen by the FED and its research staff. The financial media bowed to the altar of Alan Greenspan– the Maestro, Oracle and whatever else–and thus the cult of personality was thrust upon the markets.

(more…)

Notes From Underground: A Genuine Disgust With the Analysis of the FOMC MINUTES

August 22, 2012

OKAY, so the FOMC minutes were released and all the pundits who never trade were kibbitzing about the THIRD coming of QE. Upon several reviews of the MINUTES, I AM OF A FAR DIFFERENT OPINION. AND, UNLIKE THE PUNDITS OF THE GREAT WASTELAND, MY MONEY TALKS WHILE THEIR BULLSHIT WALKS. Yes, it is indeed frustrating to hear opinions morph into facts. As I reread the FOMC MINUTES I fail to see the certainty of a FED ACTION AT THE NEXT FOMC MEETING AND I OPINE THAT BERNANKE WILL NOT OFFER ANY GREAT INSIGHTS AT THE JACKSON HOLE SYMPOSIUM. AGAIN, ANY FED ACTION WOULD BE A REWARD TO THE CONGRESSIONAL DERELICTS WHO CONTINUALLY FAIL TO DO THEIR DUTY AND CONSTRUCT A RATIONAL FISCAL POLICY.

(more…)

Notes From Underground: All My Words Come Back to Me in Shades of Mediocrity (Homeward Bound)

April 9, 2012

Friday’s weaker than expected JOBS REPORT caused AGITA in the BOND and EQUITY MARKETS. Early in the week, the markets had punished the BONDS and EQUITIES as the FOMC MINUTES caused the purveyors of QE3 as a SURE THING to stop, look and listen. The sounds that they had listened to were from the previous speech by Chairman Bernanke as he voiced his deep concerns about the persistent drag of unemployment on GDP. The rush of FED governors and District presidents to any microphone to undermine the chairman’s views caused the market to pause and reconsider its stance on possible FED normalizing rates quicker than the “extended period” language presumed. Stocks were under pressure and U.S. Treasuries were offered as hints of FED buying grabbed traders attention.

(more…)

Notes From Underground: OPA! Time to Drink Some Ouzo and Reflect on the Greek Situation

February 13, 2012

Europe was/is/will be the catalyst for the markets, from equities and commodities to, of course, currencies. Whether the problems are violent strikes in Athens or insolvent banks in France and Spain, the issues that PLAGUE EUROPE ARE EXISTENTIAL IN NATURE. Can the problems of sovereign default and the deflationary impact rippling from a massive deleveraging be contained by a massive douse of LTRO or QE3 in the U.S.? For now the markets are CONTENT to allow the flood of liquidity be the potion for increased portfolio risk.

(more…)