A question I’ve received frequently the last couple months from many different people is about the potential for inflation given the unprecedented response to the Novel Coronavirus Pandemic. It is an important question because it impacts the best investment approach going forward as well as other personal finance decisions.
I understand the rationale behind the question. After all, trillions of dollars have been pledged between the Federal Reserve and the U.S. Treasury in the last few months in what essentially amounts to a “helicopter drop” of money on the economy. So, it is understandable that people are beginning to have concerns about the potential for inflation.
Ultimately, I believe we will get inflation mainly because the Federal Reserve will stop at almost nothing to make it happen, HOWEVER, we must allow for the possibility of getting deflation first. Continue reading “Deflation or Inflation?”
This morning at about 9 AM central, in response to the Coronavirus, the Federal Reserve announced an emergency 0.50% rate cut.
The initial response by the market was to send stocks and gold soaring. As the day wore on U.S. stocks crumbled losing about 3.5% at one point and ending the day down 2.8% while gold hung on for a 3%+ gain.
The 10-year Treasury yield continued to slide throughout the day (sending bond prices up) and even got below 1% for the first time ever! Think about that…in the almost-250 years of this great Republic we’ve just set a record low on bond yields. Continue reading “Fed Enacts Emergency Rate Cut. New Record Lows on Treasuries”
Yesterday, the Federal Reserve confirmed the market’s expectations and announced they would be cutting rates for a third time this year. The rate cut is an addition to the recently-announced program of supplying $120 BILLION in liquidity each night AND announcing the resumption of QE whereby they’ll be buying $60 BILLION of short-term Treasurys each month.
In other words, the Fed is pursuing policy that, until the recent Great Financial Crisis, was unprecedented. Why? Why are they pursuing emergency policy actions when the economy is supposedly strong, stock market is near all-time highs, unemployment near all-time lows and inflation supposedly around 2%? Continue reading “The Fed Cuts Rates for a Third Time…And Zombies”
Last week the Federal Reserve announced it would cut interest rates by 0.25%. This is major news because it signals the end of the “tightening” cycle and is the first rate cut since the Great Recession fallout. I wrote about the stock market’s action during rate cutting cycles a few weeks back here.
Here’s another great chart showing market performance during the last two rate cutting cycles.
Continue reading “Painkillers Are Not Cures”
I was asked a great question by a client this morning. “With all this news of rate cuts from the Fed, how does this impact my portfolio?”
The market has broadly rallied on expectations that the Federal Reserve would begin lowering interest rates again…likely even at its next meeting (July 30-31). This is an action the Fed hasn’t taken since the Great Financial Crisis of 2007 – 2009.
But how has the market actually performed, historically, once the Fed has begun easing after a period of tightening? It’s not necessarily bullish at all: Continue reading “Fed Rate Cuts and the Market’s Response. A Historical Perspective…”