Morning Report: JP Morgan kicks off earnings season 10/12/17

Vital Statistics:

Last Change
S&P Futures 2549.3 -3.8
Eurostoxx Index 389.9 -0.3
Oil (WTI) 50.6 -0.7
US dollar index 86.5 0.1
10 Year Govt Bond Yield 2.35%
Current Coupon Fannie Mae TBA 102.875
Current Coupon Ginnie Mae TBA 103.938
30 Year Fixed Rate Mortgage 3.9

Stocks are lower as third quarter earnings season begins with results from the banks. Bonds and MBS are flat.

JP Morgan reported better than expected earnings this morning, posting a 7% increase in net income. Higher lending revenues offset lower trading revenues. Mortgage origination was flat YOY, but revenue dropped 17%, which means margins are falling. The stock is flat pre-open.

Initial Jobless Claims came in at 243k last week, historically a very low number. For those wondering about places like Puerto Rico, their number is estimated.

Wholesale inflation remains close to the Fed’s target rate of 2%, according to the Producer Price Index. The PPI rose 0.4% MOM and 2.6% YOY, however if you strip out food, energy, and trade services, it rose 0.2% MOM and 2.1% YOY.

The FOMC minutes really didn’t provide much in the way of additional information. There was some discussion that low inflation might not just be a temporary phenomenon, which was interpreted as dovish by some observers. The 10 year didn’t react to the minutes, but the dollar sold off a tad. The December Fed Funds futures decreased the implied probability of a rate hike by a couple points.

Kevin Warsh is now the favorite of economists to run the Fed after Janet Yellen’s term. He is a Wall Street type who worked for Morgan Stanley during the crisis and has been critical of monetary policy since then. He is generally regarded as more hawkish than Yellen, and will definitely be less of a regulatory hawk than she is. Paul Krugman (Dr. Cowbell) threw a little shade Warsh’s way.

Donald Trump is re-thinking the state and local tax deduction after it turns out that about 30% of people making between 50k and 150k a year could be hit with a tax increase under the new plan. The state and local tax deduction (along with the mortgage interest deduction) are two immensely popular deductions which have managed to survive numerous assaults over the years. House Republicans in blue states, like Peter King of NY, will not support tax reform if it means giving many of their constituents a tax hike. If the state and local tax deduction remains, something else has to give, which will probably mean the estate tax (something loathed by the right) remains.

Congress is preparing legislation to subject the credit bureaus to Federal cybersecurity inspections, and to end the use of social security numbers in credit reporting by 2020. The bill will also require the credit agencies to provide free credit freezes.

How tight is the housing market? So tight that people will put up with living in haunted houses.

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