Seeking Alpha
  • Thursday, October 30, 2014

  • 10:07 AM
     
    • The average rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage rose to 3.98% from the prior week's average of 3.92%, which had been the lowest reading in more than 16 months, according to Freddie Mac's latest weekly survey.
    • The 15-year fixed-rate mortgage rose to 3.13% on average from 3.08% in the prior week.
    • A year ago, the 30-year fixed rate was at 4.10%, and the 15-year fixed averaged 3.20%.
    | Comment!
  • 9:46 AM
     
    | Comment!
  • 8:33 AM
     
    • GDP Q3: +3.5% vs. +3.0% estimate, 4.6% previous
    | 8 Comments
  • 8:30 AM
     
    • Initial Jobless Claims: +3K to 287K vs. 280K consensus, 284K prior revised. (283K prior).
    • Continuing Claims +29K to 2.38M
    | 9 Comments
  • Wednesday, October 29, 2014

  • 2:30 PM
    • While the statement - an end to QE, retention of the "considerable time" language, chatter about improving employment -wasn't much a surprise, the fact that the dissent came from the dove camp suggests perhaps there was a bit more hawkishness in the conference room than past meetings.
    • In any case, while stocks and longer-dated rates have a relatively subdued reaction, money is moving into the greenback (UUP +0.7%), with the euro (FXE -0.7%), yen (FXY -0.7%), pound (FXB -0.2%), Swiss franc (FXF -0.6%), loonie (FXC -0.4%), and aussie (FXA -0.6%) all considerably lower than they were 30 minutes ago.
    • ETFs: FXE, UUP, FXY, EUO, FXA, YCS, UDN, ERO, JYN, DRR, CROC, FORX, UUPT, UDNT, YCL, EUFX, ULE, USDU, URR, GDAY
    • Previously: QE ends, "considerable time" language stays for now
    | Comment!
  • 2:12 PM
    • The S&P 500 (SPY -0.4%), Nasdaq 100 (QQQ -0.7%), and DJIA (DIA -0.3%) are a tiny bit lower now than they were ahead of the FOMC statement.
    • The 10-year Treasury yield, up three basis points ahead of the statement, is now up five bps to 2.35%. TLT -0.3%.  Gold (GLD -1%) takes the biggest hit, falling about $10 per ounce since the statement, now off 1% on the session at $1,217.
    • Previously: QE ends, "considerable time" language stays for now
    | 8 Comments
  • 2:06 PM
     
    • As expected, the FOMC has tapered the final $15B of monthly asset purchases, but leaves in a statement expecting ZIRP to remain in place for a "considerable time."
    • However, if new inflation and employment data indicates faster-than-expected progress, rate hikes are likely to occur sooner than currently anticipated.
    • There's one dissent, and it comes from the dovish side - Minneapolis' Kocherlakota says the FOMC should commit to keeping the current Fed Funds rate target range in place until at least the one-to-two year inflation outlook has returned to 2%. He also believes QE should remain at the current $15B per month level.
    | 28 Comments
  • 8:52 AM
    • The share of occupied homes in which homeowners live fell nearly a full percentage point over the last year to 64.4%, says the Census Bureau, the smallest ratio since 1994. Alongside that number, naturally, the share of rentals that are vacant fell to its lowest since the mid-90s.
    • The story is a familiar one: Tight lending conditions and an anemic recovery coming alongside rising prices for entry level homes as institutional investors gobble up the available supply.
    • Homebuilder ETFs: ITB, XHB
    | 3 Comments
  • 7:01 AM
     
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  • Tuesday, October 28, 2014

  • 3:49 PM
    • BP (BP +2.1%) pushes steadily higher after reporting better than expected Q3 earnings and raising its dividend despite the challenging operating environment.
    • CFO Brian Gilvary says BP is in "a very good position to certainly withstand a sustained period of low oil prices in the range of $80-$85, [which] offers more opportunities for us than threats... On that basis, we will look at how we deploy the cash we have available to us in terms of investments, in terms of buybacks, in terms of progressive dividends."
    • BP says its organic capex for FY 2014 would finish as much as $2B lower than the previous forecast for $24B-$25B.
    • The comments were similar to those made last week by Occidental Petroleum CEO Steve Chazen, who said he was comfortable with lower prices and that OXY would still make double-digit returns even if prices dipped to $75/bbl.
    | 1 Comment
  • 10:02 AM
     
    | Comment!
  • 10:01 AM
     
    | 6 Comments
  • 10:00 AM
     
    • Oct Richmond Fed Mfg. Survey: +20 vs. +10 forecast, +14 in Sep.
    • Shipments 23 vs. 11
    • Capacity Utilization 13 vs. 13
    • Number of Employees 14 vs. 17
    • Average Workweek 9 vs. 10
    • Wages 11 vs. 9
    | Comment!
  • 9:52 AM
    • "There is a chance of home prices going negative," Robert Shiller tells CNBC after the Case-Shiller 20-city composite index rose just 5.6% Y/Y in August, down from 6.7% in July.
    • On a monthly basis, prices increased 0.2%, well shy of expectations for 0.5%, and 0.6% a month previous. Leading the slowdown is the Sun Belt which reported its worst annual returns since 2012.
    • "In housing, boring is better," says Zillow's Stan Humphries. Cooling price appreciation and more inline inventory will give buyers a hand up after several years of sellers being in the driver's seat.
    • ITB +0.5%, XHB +0.3%
    | 3 Comments
  • 9:01 AM
     
    | Comment!
  • 8:31 AM
     
    • September Durable Goods: -1.3% to 241.6B vs. +0.5% expected, -18.3% (revised from -18.2%) prior.
    • Ex-transport -0.2% vs. +0.5% expected, +0.7% prior.
    | Comment!
  • Monday, October 27, 2014

  • 3:17 PM
    • "We're going to have to weigh how best to avoid further unsettling markets that seem to have unsettled themselves pretty well on their own," says Boston Fed chief Eric Rosengren ahead of the FOMC meeting this week, which should bring with it the end of QE.
    • With asset purchases out of the way after a long period of taper, focus moves to the "considerable time" phrase used to describe how long ZIRP will remain in place. Some at the Fed don't like it because it implies the decision on rate hikes is based on a time frame rather than the economic data. Others, however, are worried a change to that language could rattle markets at a time when global growth concerns are beginning to reemerge.
    • The thinking is the FOMC waits until December to make a wording change as that meeting will be followed by a Janet Yellen press conference.
    • ETFs: SHY, BIL, VGSH, SHV, SCHO, DTUS, SST, DTUL, TUZ
    | 10 Comments
  • 1:09 PM
    • Busy fighting the financial crisis six after it happened, regulators are doing an excellent job laying the groundwork for the next one as evidenced by the panicky action in Treasurys on October 15. It was on that morning when the 10-year Treasury yield in the space of a few minutes tumbled to 1.90% from 2.20%, before ending the session at 2.15% (for those who don't play in fixed-income, U.S. Treasury yields very rarely ever move that much).
    • The panic buying in Treasurys also leaked over into jumpy selling in stock index futures.
    • "It was like turning the clocks back to pre-electronic trading," says Charles Comiskey, head Treasury dealer at Scotiabank. "Once we recognized things started getting out of control, we shut [the electronic trading system] off immediately."
    • Laser-focused on forcing banks to cut back on risk, regulators have forced lenders to vastly scale down their inventory of bonds, and the thinner markets make outsized moves more likely. JPMorgan estimates the amount of Treasurys available to trade at one time without moving prices has plunged 48% to just $150M since April.
    • “There’s a thin line to keeping the customer happy while also giving a level that you can at least get out of without taking a big loss right away,” says Guggenheim's Jason Rogan, whose firm also shut off the machines that morning.
    • ETFs: TBT, TLT, TMV, TBF, EDV, TMF, TTT, ZROZ, SBND, TLH, DLBS, VGLT, UBT, TLO, PLW, GOVT, TENZ, LBND, TYBS, DLBL, TAPR
    | 2 Comments
  • 10:31 AM
     
    | 1 Comment
  • 10:00 AM
     
    | Comment!
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