Thursday, August 30, 2012

Markets waiting for Bernanke's words?

Markets have been quiet lately. It is summer. But the talking heads keep saying that the markets are quiet also because they (the markets) are waiting for the Federal Reserve chairman's pronouncements at the Jackson Hole conference. The Bernank is going to talk tomorrow.

So where are we, sentiment wise, in the stock and bond markets. Since the great crash of '08 the markets have looked to the Fed for reasons to rally. Usually on the prospect of cheaper money/easing of interest rates/ or more "Quantitative Easing". Of course it has been some time since interest rates were lowered because they really can't go any lower. And the economy of the U.S. seems to be picking up. The latest reports from the retailers were nearly all above expectations and show strong gains year over year.(pricing power?)
Oil is holding up/ gasoline is up. (energy inflation) Corn and soybeans and the grains in general sky high due to the drought. (Food inflation) The Euro is showing signs of a bottom. At least for the time being. (USD weakness)
Lots of inflationary forces at work. Gold strong over the last couple weeks. Ditto for Silver.
And the talking heads are telling us that if Bernanke doesn't give up more cheap money the stock market will decline.
The Fed has stuck to their line about "doing everything neccessary to prevent deflation" or something to that effect for years now. But if there are inflationary forces starting to work, is it really reasonable for the markets to expect more easing/cheap money?

I don't think so. I think the Fed/Bernanke will say the same things they have been saying. With the intent to get inflation well under way before they take the chance of a hawkish bent. This means they will let inflation go for awhile. It won't take further easing to get things going. All they have to do is stand pat.

And if the markets were worried they wouldn't be sitting near all time highs.

Waiting. gh

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All comments are appreciated as it will give me a chance to adjust my content to any real people who may be out there. Thank you. gh