Sunday, October 11, 2015

Sunday Night Futures

by Bill McBride on 10/11/2015 07:29:00 PM

The Bond Market and Banks will be closed Monday in observance of the Columbus Day Holiday. The stock market will be open.

An excerpt from an article by Tim Duy: Fed Struggles With The High Water Mark

So where does all of this leave Fed policy? Confused, I think, like September when economists saw the outcome of that meeting as a coin toss. Don't expect communications to become much clearer. October is off the table (despite what Lacker might believe). They first need to decide if the last two months of jobs data were aberrations or signals of slowing job growth. They can't do that before October. And I am not confident they can do so by December. If we get two more reports hovering around 200k a month between now and December, matched with generally consistent data across other indicators, then December is on the table. That would indicate the economy is not coming off its high water mark without some help from the Fed. If jobs growth slows to 100k a month, again with a broad swath of generally consistent data, then we are looking at deep into 2016 before any hike. Around 150k is the gray area. They won't know if the economy is poised to head lower on its own, or if that is sufficient to contain inflationary pressures. They don't know if they should be tapping on the breaks or not. Risk management under the assumption of constrained inflation suggests they push off action until January or March. But they would not send such a clear message. Indeed, I suspect that more numbers like the last two will make the December meeting much like September's. That I fear is my current baseline - another close call in which the Fed concludes to take a pass.
Weekend:
Schedule for Week of October 11, 2015

From CNBC: Pre-Market Data and Bloomberg futures: currently S&P futures are flat and DOW futures are down 10 (fair value).

Oil prices were up over the last week with WTI futures at $49.84 per barrel and Brent at $52.65 per barrel.  A year ago, WTI was at $86, and Brent was at $89 - so prices are down more than 40% year-over-year (a year ago that prices were falling).

Here is a graph from Gasbuddy.com for nationwide gasoline prices. Nationally prices are at $2.31 per gallon (down about $0.90 per gallon from a year ago).