Displaying items by tag: fed
Investors, be worried about the Fed, and not for the reasons you think. While all the market’s focus has been on how quickly the Fed will raise rates, what could really cause problems is the Fed’s unwinding of its balance sheet. According to the Indian central bank, this unwinding is sucking Dollars out of the system and causing a Dollar liquidity squeeze. According to Urjit Patel, the governor of India’s central bank, this Dollar-squeeze means “a crisis in the rest of the dollar bond markets is inevitable”, with a growing “possibility . . . a ‘sudden stop’ for the global economic recovery”.
FINSUM: It sounds like emerging markets are going to have increasing trouble issuing Dollar bonds, which could definitely throw a wrench into the recovery. Maybe this is how the Fed sparks a global recession and not just an American one.
US Treasuries took a nose dive last week on fears over Italy. They fell from well over 3.1% to well under 2.9% very quickly. However, don’t get used to those levels. The reason why is that the underlying economy is fundamentally solid, with wages and jobs strong, growth solid, and corporate tax cuts likely to give a boost. The Fed also seems likely to continue hiking, even if only slowly.
FINSUM: All these reasons aside, our own view is that yields were on a solidly rising path until the Italy issue. Since we seen that as only a temporary problem (for global markets), we suspect bond investors will regain their views.
Investors who had been betting on emerging markets stocks might want to take notice of what is happening in the Treasuries market. While the explanation is a little technical, hear this: since the US deficit is set to rise rapidly, the US will see a surge in Treasury issuance. That big jump is issuance will suck up investor Dollars, and is likely to greatly wound Dollar-based EM funding. The Fed will also be forced to stop shrinking its balance sheet, which will also exacerbate the situation for EMs.
FINSUM: It sounds like the EM funding market is going to take a hit, which could have major ripple effects throughout the whole asset class.
In what could be could news for those worried about the Fed hiking us into a recession, one of the Fed’s top leaders has just come out with a very dovish tone. St. Louis Fed chief Bullard says the Fed needs to slow its pace of rate hikes to preserve its credibility. “Inflation expectations in the U.S. remain somewhat low, suggesting that further normalization may not be necessary to keep inflation near target”. He suggests that the best policy going forward may be to freeze hikes.
FINSUM: One of the things that has worried us about the Fed is that they seem to be viewing rate hikes as some sort of automatic pre-determined path towards normalization rather than basing it on actual inflation numbers.
Investors beware. US equity prices now seem to be entirely at the mercy of bond yields. Stocks have consistently struggled as yields have moved higher, and today Treasury yields seem to have broken an important threshold. Treasuries traded as high as 3.13% this morning, the highest level in seven years. Stock markets unsurprisingly fell. The markets were initially spooked by a solid US retail sales report that seemed to indicate the Fed might hike more aggressively than expected.
FINSUM: Yields definitely seem to have a strongly upward trend at the moment and have definitively broken out of that 2.9% band they had been locked in for a few weeks. Next stop 3.50%?