Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Wednesday: Fed Day!

by Bill McBride on 3/17/2015 08:57:00 PM

From Jon Hilsenrath at the WSJ: Fed to Markets: No More Promises

Ahead of their policy meeting that ends Wednesday, Fed officials have signaled they want to drop the latest iteration in a succession of low-rate promises—a line in their policy statement pledging to be “patient” before deciding to raise rates.

The move could be a test for investors. In theory, less-clear-cut interest-rate guidance from the Fed should lead to more volatility in financial markets. That’s because investors will be left less certain about a key variable in every asset-valuation model: the cost of funds.
• 7:00 AM ET, the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) will release the results for the mortgage purchase applications index.

• During the day: the AIA's Architecture Billings Index for February (a leading indicator for commercial real estate).

• At 2:00 PM, the FOMC Meeting Announcement. The FOMC is expected to make no change to policy, however the word "patient" will probably be removed from the statement opening the possibility of a rate hike as early as June.

• At 2:00 PM, the FOMC Forecasts. This will include the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) participants' projections of the appropriate target federal funds rate along with the quarterly economic projections.

• At 2:30 PM, Fed Chair Janet Yellen holds a press briefing following the FOMC announcement.