And just like they did for her predecessors, the markets hung on every single word.
Except in this case, nobody (and I mean nobody) expected any major fireworks. What they were looking for instead was a confirmation that it would be "business as usual."
To continue reading, please click here...
- FOMC Meeting Today: How the Taper Is Affecting Markets The Federal Reserve went forward with its taper plans yesterday, announcing it would reduce its bond-buying by $10 billion per month. But that is no guarantee the Fed will continue to taper, especially if the economy falters. And now that the Fed has a new chief in Janet Yellen, we could be in for some surprises this year...
What the Fed Taper Means for Markets and Your Money
I didn't think it would happen, but Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke up and did "it" a few minutes ago.
He announced the "Fed taper" - the Fed will cut its bond buying by $10 billion a month (to $75 billion) beginning in January.
I think there are a few points to consider about Bernanke's move. I want talk briefly about those, and then highlight what this news of a Fed taper means for your money.To continue reading, please click here...
Deflation Is Coming (and It's Not What You Think)
Be careful out there.
The stock market rally that started in March 2009... The one that's taken us out of the Great Recession and to new highs... The rally that's driving sentiment indicators of people who benefit from rising financial assets directly, peripherally, or because they hope all boats rise with the market...
The rally has never been loved.
The thing is, equity markets don't need love to go twice as high from here, or three times as high in the next 20 years. If they get what else they need, they'll keep going higher.
We could be on the verge of a generational bull market. That's if deficit-plagued, interconnected global sovereigns deleverage and, at the same time, re-capitalize middle and rising classes by making "recourse-sound" capital available and simultaneously reconstituting entirely the notion of taxation.
Too bad the likelihood of that happening is somewhere between slim and none.
That's one reason why I'm an increasingly reluctant bull.
But there's another reason too.
And it has to do with deflation...
- Keith Fitz-Gerald Nails It on Today's FOMC Meeting Money Morning’s Chief Investment Strategist went on record with his prediction months ago, stating that there’s not a central banker in the world who has the guts to step away from QE. Few – if any – investors agreed. But they didn’t lock in a 100% gain, either… Read more...
- How the Fed QE Taper Will Affect Foreign Markets Hints from the U.S. Federal Reserve this week that the quantitative easing taper is near ruffled feathers on Wall Street last week - but the idea of less Fed stimulus has caused much more turmoil in certain overseas markets. Here are the places getting hit the hardest. Read more... Read More...
What You Need to Know About Silver Prices and the Fed QE Taper
Silver prices have rebounded about 28% since the lows of late June, and are currently trading at around $23 an ounce.
This move was key for silver prices - it means the metal broke out above its 50-day moving average.
Barclays' technical analysts pointed out that last week was silver's best week since 2011, with a gain of 14.3%.To continue reading, please click here...
- Esther George on Why It's Time to Begin Adjusting QE Esther George, Kansas City Fed President, is a hawk among doves. Here’s why she’s concerned about what’s ahead for the economy, thanks to QE. Read more... Read More...
Your Best Strategy for Playing This QE Rally
Even as stocks and bonds continue to digest the concept of rising rates and the end of quantitative easing, there are still some great opportunities to land some big gains before any real trouble hits the markets.
QE may be fading away but that doesn't mean you can't profit... Read More...
Why the U.S. Dollar is Rising – And Why It's Still Doomed
Many have wondered - and rightly so - why the U.S. dollar is rising even though the U.S. Federal Reserve has done just about everything possible to debase the currency over the past five years.
Over the past two years, the U.S. Dollar index, which measures the dollar against a basket of major world currencies, is up by more than 12.6%.
Part of the answer is that most of the world's other central banks have pursued easy money policies similar to the Fed's. In the so-called "currency wars," the U.S. dollar has one major built-in advantage.
"The U.S. has never defaulted," explained Money Morning Chief Investment Strategist Keith Fitz-Gerald. "The world may hate our guts, but when all hell breaks loose, they all love our dollar."
Also helping to explain why the U.S. dollar is rising is that it remains the world's reserve currency - the money a majority of nations use to buy commodities such as oil -- and that the U.S. economy, for all its warts, is in better shape than most of the other developed economies in the world.
"The dollar the best-looking horse in the glue factory," Fitz-Gerald said.
So it wasn't too surprising that when the Fed recently hinted that it might start "tapering" its quantitative easing (bond-buying) policies later this year, the U.S. Dollar index spiked 3.1%.
But Fitz-Gerald said that investors still need to be wary of the stronger U.S. dollar going forward.
This Sept. 2 Event Could Send the U.S. Dollar CrashingRead More...
The Fed Or the Fundamentals? What's Behind Stock Market Moves?
What's driving the stock market - the Fed or company fundamentals?
The answer, of course, depends whom you ask.
Has most or all of the growth in the market over the past few years been due to the Fed's massive QE easy money stimulus?
Or is it fundamentals like earnings per share and the price/earnings ratio?
We asked three experts to weigh in: Money Morning Chief Investment Strategist Keith Fitz-Gerald, Money Morning Capital Wave Strategist Shah Gilani and Brian Wesbury, the chief economist at First Trust Advisors.
Here's their take.Read More...
What to Do Now as the End of QE Nears
If investors needed a reminder that global stock market rallies have been goosed by the Fed's lose monetary measures, they got it.
On Wednesday, U.S. equities went on roller-coaster ride.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average, up 155 points before FOMC Chairman Ben Bernanke said the Fed could soon begin to tap the brakes, ended the day down 80.41, or off by 0.5%,.
The uncertainty of when the Fed would begin to wind down its $85 billion-a-month in asset purchases sent investors to the sidelines in a hurry.
"This is a very sensitive market and particularity sensitive to any notion that tapering will come too soon," Quincy Krosby, market strategist at Prudential Financial in New York told Reuters.
"No one wants to be selling if the data reaches the point when the Fed begins to specifically talk about tapering. The market doesn't wait for the Fed to move. It will move before. That's how it operates," Krosby continued.
Of course, we knew QE couldn't really last forever. So what should investors do?..Read More...
The New Crisis Warning Just Issued to the Federal Reserve
Before the housing market crash, economists warned that record low-interest and mortgage rates were fueling a housing bubble.
Unfortunately, those fears were both overlooked and underestimated.
Now, an advisory council to the U.S. Federal Reserve is warning the Fed that its record $85 billon-a-month stimulus and ultra-low interest rates are fueling new bubbles in student loans and farmland.
"Recent growth in student-loan debt, to nearly $1 trillion, now exceeds credit-card outstandings and has parallels to the housing crisis," according to minutes of the council's Feb. 8 meeting.Read More...
In addition, "agricultural land prices are veering further from what makes sense," the council said. "Members believe the run-up in agriculture land prices is a bubble resulting from persistently low interest rates."
- What You Absolutely Need to Know About Money (Part 6) How did stodgy traditional banking morph into “casino banking” on a global scale? Shah Gilani explains the crooked path to where we are today… Read more... Read More...
There's More Than One Way for the Fed to End QE
The market has been looking ahead to the inevitable end of the U.S. Federal Reserve's quantitative easing (QE) program with considerable apprehension.
Most market observers expect the end of the Fed's QE asset-purchasing program to immediately result in a sharp sell-off in bonds and higher interest rates.
This is expected to hit the mortgage-backed securities (MBS) market, where the Fed has been very active, quite hard.
As part of a policy to communicate more openly with the markets, Chairman Ben Bernanke and the Fed have been regularly launching QE exit strategy trial balloons into the market to see how quickly they get shot down.
The latest exit strategy that has been gaining traction is the idea of "tapering" QE asset purchases so that there isn't a sudden halt to supply of money flowing from the Fed into the Treasury and MBS markets. The markets seem to be pretty sanguine about the tapering idea, although there has been no specific suggestion on timing.
Instead, the markets have been concentrating on how the Fed will get rid of all of the assets it has accumulated on its balance sheet during the QE program.Read More...