Morning Report: Markets await the Fed

Vital Statistics:

 LastChange
S&P futures3,77439.25
Oil (WTI)118.21-0.64
10 year government bond yield 3.37%
30 year fixed rate mortgage 6.06%

Stocks are higher this morning as we await the FOMC decision at 2:00 pm. Bonds and MBS are up.

The FOMC decision will be released at 2:00 pm today. The market is predicting a 75 basis point increase in the Fed Funds rate. One week ago, the market was certain that the Fed would hike 50 basis points, so we have had a pretty sizeable jump in expectations in a short period of time. We will also get a fresh set of economic projections as well as a new dot plot.

Volatility in global bond markets has made predicting the reaction to the Fed decision pretty much a fool’s errand. I suspect the dot plot will be the main thing traders focus on, with an eye to predicting whether the Fed moves 50 or 75 in June. Note that European sovereign yields are down hard this morning as the ECB has called an emergency meeting to discuss volatility.

Retail sales fell 0.3% in May, according to the Census Bureau. This was below consensus. April’s numbers were revised downward as well. Ex-vehicles and gas, retail sales rose 0.1%. Motor vehicles were a big drag on the numbers. That said, it looks like consumers are beginning to pull in their horns, which can be a either a blessing or a curse for the Fed. If the drop in spending cools off inflation, then we have a better chance for a soft landing. If not, then we are looking at stagflation all over again.

Mortgage applications rose 6.6% last week as purchases rose 8% and refis rose 4%. This was the first increase in apps in 5 weeks. “Mortgage rates followed Treasury yields up in response to higher-than-expected inflation and anticipation that the Federal Reserve will need to raise rates at a faster pace,” said Joel Kan, MBA Associate Vice President of Economic and Industry Forecasting. “Despite the increase in rates, application activity rebounded following the Memorial Day holiday week but remained 0.29 percent below pre-holiday levels. With mortgage rates well above 5 percent, refinance activity continues to run more than 70 percent lower than last year.”

Separately, Wells Fargo’s CFO said at a conference yesterday that he expected Q2 mortgage banking income to be down about 50% from Q1.

The increase in mortgage rates this year has been the biggest since 1981. Between the increase in home prices and the rise in rates, the typical principal and interest portion of a mortgage is up big as well. This is cooling down the housing market, and Moody’s is predicting that home price appreciation will be flat over the next year, and some markets might see a drop in prices.

38 Responses

  1. Hey Lulu,

    Hoping Walter’s surgery went well and wishing him a speedy recovery!

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    • Agreed.

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    • Agree as well.

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    • Wow, thanks everyone! The goal of surgery was a success. Unfortunately they had to keep him on a catheter for at least two weeks and Nurse Lulu is in charge of flushing the thing out………………YIKES Otherwise, he should start feeling better soon! Kind of tough since the operation was on his parathyroid……….uggghhh 6 hour surgery and he handled it well.

      I checked in to see if anyone watched the hearings today! I still find it very interesting and I still doubt Pelosi manipulated Cheney, or that Cheney allowed her to. The evidence is pretty damning against Trump but in the end it probably won’t matter.

      Have a great weekend Guys…………….It’s Friday Eve after all!

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      • lms:

        I still doubt Pelosi manipulated Cheney, or that Cheney allowed her to.

        I didn’t say Pelosi “manipulated” Cheney. I said she used her to give the “investigation” the patina of non-partisanship. Which, again, seems so obvious that it’s difficult to see why anyone would deny it.

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        • lms:

          BTW, were you aware that someone got arrested last week for attempting to kill Brett Kavanaugh?

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        • Scott, my point remains the same……………..Cheney is not some kind of pawn of Nancy Pelosi’s. And yes, I’m aware of that. Are you attempting to connect that to the hearings? Sounds like the guy was crazy and actually called for help and was arrested. Also it appears that there is now extra security around the justices. Not sure what your point is here?

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        • lms:

          Are you attempting to connect that to the hearings?

          No. I have been asking all of the progressives that I know the same thing, because I think that the corporate media has made a conscious attempt to downplay the attempt/plan to kill him (just as it is trying to hype and promote the Jan 6 show trial) and so I am trying to judge just how effective they have been at keeping the event from the public consciousness.

          Do you remember where you heard about it?

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        • What was Pelosi’s reasons for not allowing McCarthy to appoint whom he wanted to the committee?

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        • Well it wasn’t kept from my consciousness. I read most of my news rather than watch the news. I certainly knew about it, knew about the man’s arrest, his call for help because he claimed to be suicidal, and the bill to extend security to the families of SC justices that passed both the Senate and the House.

          I think if you’re not watching the testimony from the hearings by so many Republicans in Trump’s inner circle, you might be missing out on some news yourself.

          I actually don’t consider myself a progressive though. However, I am liberal especially on some issues, such as health care and gun legislation.

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        • lms:

          Well it wasn’t kept from my consciousness.

          Do you remember where you heard about it?

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      • McWing, Here’s what I understand about Pelosi and McCarthy and the committee.
        Facts First: McCarthy’s claim is misleading. Pelosi did reject two of McCarthy’s five proposed committee members, Reps. Jim Jordan and Jim Banks, on account of concerns about their “statements made and actions taken” — but she accepted the other three McCarthy picks, and she also gave McCarthy a chance to suggest another two members to replace Jordan and Banks. Instead, McCarthy decided to withdraw the three members Pelosi had accepted. Even after he did so, the minority party still had representation on the committee: Reps. Liz Cheney, who had already been selected by Pelosi before McCarthy pulled out his own selections, and Adam Kinzinger, whom Pelosi selected later. Both Cheney and Kinzinger are outspoken Trump critics who have been at odds with many of their GOP colleagues, but they are elected Republicans nonetheless.

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        • So, Republicans we’re not allowed to appoint whom they wanted and as a result pulled all their appointees in protest and Pelosi appointed the two Republicans. If I’m understanding you correctly.

          How does Pelosi’s actions make the committee legitimate in the eyes of the Republican caucus?

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        • McWing I’m sure it doesn’t make the committee legitimate in the eyes of the R caucus. I doubt that is actually the goal of the committee. Considering that 147 Republicans, between the House and Senate, voted against certifying the electoral votes on Jan 6, why should we care about that? I think the committee is presenting evidence, a lot of it from Trump’s inner circle, that Trump and Eastman were complicit in overturning the votes of the American people. Maybe they’re trying to appeal to moderate R’s, who aren’t under the thrall of Trump, or to present some sort of compelling argument that crimes were committed and see what happens. McCarthy would have had 5 R’s on the committee but instead ended up with 2, one of whom is very dynamic IMO!

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        • What Eastman and Trump action(s) we’re illegal? The House has a right to reject state electors and the Executive Branch has a right to lobby the House to do so.

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        • McWing, I don’t think that’s an accurate interpretation of things. Most of the legal scholars I’ve read deny that Pence could have done anything to thwart the will of the people. What the house did may have been legal but all it does is delay the procedure of certification temporarily. Trump, via Eastman’s advice, was advocating for the Pence to essentially declare Trump president by either postponing the proceeding or selecting a fake set of electors. How could one man do that? The constitution is pretty clear on that point I think.

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        • lms:

          The constitution is pretty clear on that point I think.

          Please don’t invoke the Constitution as if you care about what the Constitution actually says and means.

          One word….abortion.

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        • The electoral certification was codified in the Electoral Count act and despite what the J6 committee may allege, the acts of the President of the Senate, the VP, have not been fully, or even partly adjudicated. Pence’s possible actions as laid out by Eastman were in no way illegal and their Constitutionality have not yet been decided. The Congress and Executive Branch have had 150 years to further clarify this and have not done so. You and many Democrats may not have liked the actions Pence may have taken but their illegality has not yet been determined.

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        • Also the Republicans tried to clarify the law in legislation so the rationale being used could never be used again and the Democrats refused. So apparently they like the ambiguity. And are maybe hoping for more of this.

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        • Excellent comment Scott………….nice way to send me packing again!

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        • Well, sorry if you are offended, but I don’t think it makes sense for people to invoke the Constitution when it suits their politics and to ignore it when it doesn’t. If you truly care about the Constitution for itself, then you should defend it even when it produces results that you don’t agree with.

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        • This is why we can’t have nice things!

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        • McWing I’ve read quite a bit about that myself and I’m certainly no expert but the majority of opinions (left and right) I’ve read in the last, almost year and a half, would disagree with you I think. I doubt it’s ever been the intention to give the Vice President the singular power to overturn the will of the voters. Just my opinion on that. It seems clear to me that Trump was trying to force Pence to do something illegal. And when he wouldn’t, he turned the mob on him.

          Scott, it appears that gaslighting is perfectly fine to you when you’re the one doing it. I’m leaving now, but don’t forget you’re quite possibly going to owe me that $50. Not only is Biden still president but it looks like he wants to run again (something I’m hoping against). Donate it to a charity of your choice.

          It must be nice to have no room in your dogma for ambiguity or conflict of opinion. I should envy you that single mindedness but for some reason I just don’t.

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        • So, you agree that Electoral Certification act is unclear on this and ultimately must be clarified either by the courts or Congress vis legislation? Also, Trump lobbying his VP to make a parliamentary procedure isn’t in any way illegal as the result would have been at most, and acknowledged by all, a delay so that individual states could investigate their own elections. Again, please point out what is illegal about Trumps or Eastmans actions.

          As for unleashing the mob, Trump specifically asked his supporters to be peaceful, and came on tv later to reiterate that. The so called mob initiated violence even before Trump finished his speech and the March to the Capitol. At the Capitol there is footage of Capitol police opening doors and letting people in as well as escorting them around the building, so whom did what? And why did Pelosi turned down troops to help with security? Why were the Capital police not fully staffed for that day? How many Feds were planted in the mob and what actions did they take? Why did Ray Epps get a pass when he’s on tape encouraging the mob to enter the Capital as well as illegally being on the Capital grounds?

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        • Trump could have done a better job cooling things down and could have argued that legal challenges he was mounting were the only approach and should be allowed to work or something. Could have done a much better job but if doing a bad job is criminal the lots of presidents should go to jail.

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        • lms:

          Scott, it appears that gaslighting is perfectly fine to you when you’re the one doing it.

          I genuinely have no idea what you could possibly be referring to. What exactly do you think I am gaslighting you about? What do you even understand that term to mean?

          I’m leaving now…

          That’s unfortunate. But please feel free to return when you change your mind again.

          It must be nice to have no room in your dogma for ambiguity or conflict of opinion.

          I don’t know what “dogma” you are referring to, nor do I know what it would even mean to have “no room” for “conflict of opinion” in one’s dogma. Perhaps you could clarify what you are talking about?

          As for ambiguity, I actually find lots of things to be ambiguous. For just one simple example, I think that whether and how the 1st amendment’s free exercise clause should apply to a law that prohibits peyote use even when it is being used as part of a religious ritual is ambiguous. So it is strange that you seem to think I don’t think anything is ambiguous.

          I should envy you that single mindedness but for some reason I just don’t.

          You are not alone, I am sure. A single mindedness about wanting the Constitution to be applied and upheld regardless of political preferences is a virtue that unfortunately few people share. Including, most regrettably of all, even many SCOTUS justices.

          but don’t forget you’re quite possibly going to owe me that $50.

          I know! Do you remember the specific time frame of the bet? I think it was 3 years, but I can’t remember for sure. I’ll go back and look.

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        • lms:

          BTW, the end date for our bet was Election Day 2024, so we still have a lot of time to go. Not even halfway there yet.

          https://all-things-in-moderation.com/2020/11/04/morning-report-no-decision-yet/#comment-201900

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        • Don’t start counting your money yet, lms!

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  2. This will turn out well:

    “Democratic meddling in GOP primaries prompts concern over elevating election deniers

    By Annie Linskey
    Updated June 13, 2022 at 11:23 p.m. EDT|


    All three have something else in common: They’re benefiting, either directly or indirectly, from a cluster of Democratic-associated groups spending millions of dollars in contested Republican primaries this month. In some cases these groups are attacking more mainstream Republicans and in others they are amplifying messages from the election-denying candidates.

    The apparent bet these organizations are placing is that such far-right candidates, who hold polarizing views on various issues, would be easier to defeat in the November midterms when a broader slice of the electorate will be casting ballots.”

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2022/06/13/democrats-interference-primaries/

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  3. Scott

    Please don’t invoke the Constitution as if you care about what the Constitution actually says and means.

    One word….abortion

    The definition of gaslighting in philosophy refers to individuals who cannot accept criticism or do not tolerate dealing with others having opposing views.

    As a result, to avoid being criticized or to avoid having to deal with disagreements, some will gaslight others to effectively alter their world views or change their perception of reality aligning it with their own.

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    • lms:

      The definition of gaslighting in philosophy refers to individuals who cannot accept criticism or do not tolerate dealing with others having opposing views.

      I’m not sure where you got that, but that is not what the term generally refers to. Gaslighting is the practice of trying to get someone to question their own ability to perceive reality. In political discussions it usually refers to the repeated insistence on an obvious and demonstrably false narrative. Basically it is the equivalent of telling someone “Trust me, not your own lying eyes.” A great example would be the 2020 BLM riots, when reporters were literally standing in front of burning buildings proclaiming that a “peaceful protest” was taking place.

      As for the implied accusation against me, I guess you don’t see the irony in accusing someone else of being unable to accept criticisms or opposing views in the same breath that you announce your departure immediately upon being criticised and confronted with an opposing view.

      Like

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