Tag Archives: Federal Reserve

Oct 7, 2020

Assessing Gold’s Ascent

What’s driving demand for gold this year? S&P DJI’s Jim Wiederhold and CME Group’s Blu Putnam explore what’s pushing gold prices up and how investors are putting the precious metal to work in portfolios.

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Jun 19, 2020

Like the Virus, Credit Spreads Could Be at Risk of a Possible Second Wave

Ever since the Fed released its tsunami of credit, credit markets have rallied the most since the depth of the Global Financial Crisis. Continued central bank actions have driven the already existing trend toward demand for higher-yielding assets, helping companies issue debt with fewer lender safeguards and covenants. With the Fed willing to support the…

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Jun 3, 2020

Increased Supply of U.S. Treasuries and Interest Rate Risk

Since March 2020, the federal government has enacted four pieces of legislation to assist businesses and individuals weather the economic downtown triggered by the COVID-19 outbreak. According to the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), these four pandemic-related laws are projected to increase the federal deficit by USD 2.2 trillion in fiscal year 2020 and by USD…

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Mar 23, 2017

Rising Rates Arrive

Which of the figures below belong together?   It’s obvious, even if analogies aren’t your strong suit, that A is like C and B is like D.  A and C are not like B and D. The economic relevance of this simple visual exercise is this: At its March 2017 meeting, the Federal Open Market…

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Aug 1, 2016

Bank Lending: More Demand, Tighter Standards

Three times a year the Federal Reserve surveys bank lending officers about credit standards, loan pricing and the demand for borrowing.  The Survey provides insights into business and consumer borrowing as well as where the economy may be headed.  The results of the July 2016 survey, released today, echo the details in last week’s GDP…

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Dec 15, 2015

Countdown to Tomorrow

Tomorrow the Federal Reserve is expected to raise its benchmark Federal Funds rate by 25 basis points  — the first increase in seven years.   This increase, assuming that it comes, must surely rank among the Fed’s most advertised and anticipated moves ever, and Wall Street trading desks are ramping up in expectation of heightened trading volumes.   We have…

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Jul 15, 2014

Food Price Inflation and El Nino Possibility

Food price inflation is increasing sharply in the US. Only last December 2013, food prices were just 1.05% higher than the previous December. As of May 2014, food price inflation was running at 2.46% (year over year) and possibly heading above 4% by late 2014 or early 2015. Now, the Federal Reserve (Fed) prefers to…

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Apr 21, 2014

Index of Leading Indicators Kicks-Off the Week

The yield on the 10-year Treasury as measured by the S&P/BGCantor Current 10 Year U.S. Treasury Index suddenly moved higher to 2.78% from the previous day’s 2.64%.  Thursday’s upward movement before the Good Friday Holiday was a result of negotiations over the Ukraine crisis possibly resulting in an accord to defuse the conflict. Yields in…

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Feb 18, 2014

Fixed Income Update: Presidents’ Day Week

A short week ahead due to yesterday’s President’s Day Holiday.  Treasuries gained today as the Empire Manufacturing report released today was a 4.48.  The survey of manufacturing executives was bearish when compared to the expected number of 8.5 and its prior number of 12.51.  February’s home builder’s sentiment was also lower as the National Association…

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Oct 31, 2013

No Tricks, Just Treats From The Fed This Halloween

It recently struck me that the announcement day for the Federal Reserve’s policy meeting would coincide with what is known locally as “Mischief Night”. Mischief Night is the night before Halloween when kids play trick on neighbors by hanging toilet paper in the trees or soaping car windows. If anyone was positioned to play a…

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