Tag Archive: Federal Reserve/Monetary Policy

Concocting Inventory

The Census Bureau provided some updated inventory estimates about wholesalers, including its annual benchmark revisions. As to the latter, not a whole lot was changed, a small downward revision right around the peak (early 2021) of the supply shock which is consistent with the GDP estimates for when inventory levels were shrinking fast.

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Worry Walls Don’t Explain Repeated Falls

Someone once said that the stock market is always climbing a wall of worry. Maybe that had been true in some long-ago day, but whether or not it might nowadays is beside the point. The nugget of truth which makes the prosaism memorable is the wall rather than the climber. There’s always something going on somewhere to get worked up over.

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Goldilocks And The Three Central Banks

This isn’t going to be like the tale of Goldilocks, at least not how it’s usually told. There are three central banks, sure, call them bears if you wish, each pursuing a different set of fuzzy policies. One is clearly hot, the other quite cold, the final almost certainly won’t be “just right.” Rather, this one in the middle simply finds itself…in the middle of the other two.Running red-hot to the point of near-horror, that’s “our” Federal...

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The Short, Sweet Income Case For Ugly Inversion(s), Too

A nod to just how backward and upside down the world is now. The economic data everyone is made to pay attention to, payrolls, that one is, in my view, irrelevant. As is the consumer price estimates from earlier this week, the PCE Deflator. That’s another one which receives vast amounts of interest even though it is already old news.

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We Can Only Hope For Another (bond) Massacre

To begin with, the economy today is absolutely nothing like it had been almost thirty years ago. That fact in and of itself should end the discussion right here. However, comparisons will be made and it does no harm to review them.I’m talking about 1994, or, more specifically, the eleven months between late February 1994 and early February 1995.

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It Wouldn’t Be TIC Without So Much Other

With the Fed (sadly) taking center stage last week, and market rejections of its rate hikes at the forefront, lost in the drama was January 2022 TIC. Understandable, given all its misunderstood numbers are two months behind at their release. There were some interesting developments regardless, and a couple of longer run parts that deserve some attention.

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Inversion Is The Real March Madness, Just Don’t Take It Literally

With such low levels of self-awareness, it isn’t surprising that the FOMC’s members continue to pour gasoline on the already-blazing curve fire. March Madness is supposed to be on the courts of college basketball, instead it is playing out more vividly across all financial markets.

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The Fed Inadvertently Adds To Our Ironclad Collateral Case Which Does Seem To Have Already Included A ‘Collateral Day’ (or days)

The Federal Reserve didn’t just raise the range for its federal funds target by 25 bps, upper and lower bounds, it also added the same to its twin policy tools which the “central bank” says are crucial to maintaining order in money markets thereby keeping federal funds inside the band where it is supposed to be. The FOMC voted to increase IOER from 15 bps to 40 bps, and the RRP from 5 bps to 30 bps.

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Media Attention All Over FOMC, Market Attention Totally Elsewhere

The Federal Reserve did something today, or actually announced today that it will do something as of tomorrow. And since we’re all conditioned to believe this is the biggest thing ever, I’ll have to add my own $0.02 (in eurodollars, of course, can’t be bank reserves) frustratingly contributing to the very ritual I’m committed to seeing end.We shouldn’t care much about the Fed.

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There Is An Absolutely Solid Collateral Case For What’s Driving Curve Inversion(s) [Part 2]

Securities lending as standard practice is incredibly complicated, and for many the process can be counterintuitive. With numerous different players contributing various pieces across a wide array of financial possibilities, not to mention the whole expanse of global geography, collateral for collateral swaps have gone largely unnoticed by even mainstream Economics and central banking.

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There Is An Absolutely Solid Collateral Case For What’s Driving Curve Inversion(s) [Part 1]

With the 7s10s already inverted, and the 5s today mere bps away, making a macro case for the distortion isn’t too difficult. Despite China’s “upside” economic data today, even the Chinese are talking more about their downside worries (shooting/hoping for “stability”) than strength. In the US or Europe, no matter the CPIs in either place there are cyclical (not just inventory) warning signs all over the place.

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China’s Loan Results Back The PBOC Going The Opposite Way From The Fed

This week will almost certainly end up as a clash of competing interest rate policy views. Everyone knows about the Federal Reserve’s upcoming, the beginning of what is intended to be a determined inflation-fighting campaign for a US economy that American policymakers worry has been overheated.

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Another One Inverts, The Retching Cat Reaches Treasuries

As Alan Greenspan’s rate hikes closed in, longer-term Treasury yields were forced upward as the flattening yield curve left no more room for their blatant defiance. By mid-2005, though, the market wasn’t ready to fully price the downside risks which had already led to that worrisome curve shape (very flat). While all sorts of bad potential could be reasonably surmised, none of it seemed imminent or definite.

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Consumer Prices And The Historical Pain(s)

The 1947-48 experience was truly painful, maybe even terrifying. The US and Europe had just come out of a decade when the worst deflationary consequences were so widespread that the period immediately following quickly erupted into the worst conflagration in human history.

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So Much Fragile *Cannot* Be Random Deflationary Coincidences

At first glance, or first exposure to this, there doesn’t seem to be any reason why all these so many pieces could be related. Outwardly, from the mainstream perspective, anyway, you’d think them random, and even if somehow correlated they’re supposed to be in the opposite way from what’s happened.

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Houston, We Have An Oil (and inventory) Problem

If only, like in the aftermath of the Apollo 13 explosion, we could just radio Houston to get started in figuring out just the way out of our fix. Mission Control would certainly buzz all the right people with the right stuff, summoning the best engineers and scientists from their quiet divans to the frenzied and dangerous work ahead.

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For The Fed, None Of These Details Will Matter

Most people have the impression that these various payroll and employment reports just go into the raw data and count up the number of payrolls and how many Americans are employed. Perhaps the BLS taps the IRS database as fellow feds, or ADP as a private company in the same data business of employment just tallies how many payrolls it processes as the largest provider of back-office labor services.That’s just not how it works, though. In fact,...

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SWIFT Isn’t The ‘Nuclear Option’ For Russia, Because Russia can sell the dollars elsewhere and NOT via Swift

As everyone “knows”, the US dollar is the world’s reserve currency which can only leave the US government in control of it. Participation is both required and at the pleasure of American authorities. If you don’t accept their terms, you risk the death penalty: exile from the privilege of the US dollar’s essential business.From what little most people know about that essential business, it seems like it has something to do with that thing called...

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Briefing Even More Inventory

Retail sales stumbled in December, contributing some to the explosion in inventory across the US supply chain – but not all. Inventories were going to spike even if sales had been better. In fact, retail inventories rose at such a record pace beyond anything seen before, had sales been far improved the monthly increase in inventories still would’ve unlike anything in the data series.

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The Red Warning

Now it’s the Russian’s fault. Belligerence surrounding Donbas and Ukraine, raw materials and energy supplies to Europe threatened by Putin’s coiled bear. Why wouldn’t markets grow worried?There’s always a reason why we shouldn’t take these things seriously, or quickly dismiss them out of hand as the temporary product of whichever political fear-of-the-day.

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