Crescenzi: Rates have about topped out

|By:, SA News Editor

"Our conviction is strengthened by an examination of what the markets are priced for ... significant rate hikes (100 basis points in 2015). This is a big shift in sentiment from only a few months ago. In fact, the increases should actually limit a further rise in market rates - because rate hikes are already priced in!"

Further, the rate hikes are expected to begin in Q1 2015 even as the Fed has made clear it won't commence with tightening until headline unemployment drops to 6.5%. For unemployment to drop to 6.5% by year-end 2014 would require "gigantic" monthly payroll gains (about 300K/month) over the next 15 months, says Crescenzi.

Even more, the Fed has said 6.5% isn't a "trigger." It's likely to be patient once unemployment hits its target, meaning rate hikes may not come for another couple of quarters after. Add it up and the first move may not come until 2016.

Left out of Crescenzi's analysis is the possibility of a Larry Summers-led Fed. These highly-dovish promises are ones made by the Bernanke/Yellen leadership. Summers leans more hawkish, and - if the volume of media leaks are of any value - if appears the President is leaning towards Summers as his pick for Fed chief.

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