The last FOMC meeting for 2016 has concluded, and the outcome is a slightly more hawkish tone than investors initially expected. The Fed has hiked the federal fund’s target rate by 25bps to 0.75% for the second time in two years. However, this hike was largely in line with the consensus expectations.
What caught investors by surprise was the revision of the Fed’s projection for rates in 2017. A revision that demonstrates that the median of estimates by the Federal Reserve members point to not two rate hikes, as in the September meeting, but three. Experience suggests that investors should take the Fed’s revision with a pinch of salt. After all, it was only this year that we witnessed the Federal Reserve revise its rate projections down, a move that followed an increase earlier in the year. And yet, judging by the reaction of Treasuries and the dollar, this revision is taken with some gravity. In fact, it paves the way for another dollar higher. The question is why? Continue reading "Fed Paves The Way For Broad Dollar Rally"→
The Japanese Yen is finally ready for another bearish wave, the kind that could drive the Dollar-Yen trade to retest the 2015 highs. At least, that is what the USD/JPY technical analysis suggests. According to the MACD Index, the selling momentum has weakened, and the pair is just resting above the 100 pivot, a key pivot for the pair. But the question is, are fundamentals ripe for another Yen selloff and a USD/JPY rally?
Yen is a Bond Play
As I often reiterate, the Japanese Yen is essentially a bond play. Over the past decade, Japan has been stuck in a long deflationary cycle of falling prices and less than 1% average growth in five years. Moreover, Japanese consumers, as well as Japanese corporations, have had an overwhelming desire to hoard mountains of cash which only exacerbates the stagnation of the Japanese economy. The combination of constant cash hoarding and deflation has created a very robust market for Japanese Government Bonds. The Japanese government has tried to balance the phenomenon by accumulating a jaw-dropping debt of 229% of GDP or roughly $9.5 Trillion, and by trying to spur growth. Instead of balance, however, it has made the Japanese Government Bond market so overwhelmingly large (compared to other sectors), that it essentially dominates the dynamics of the Yen. When demand for Japanese Government Bond rises so does demand for the Yen, and vice versa. Continue reading "Japanese Yen Set for a Winter Sell?"→
The Fed dropped a bomb this past Wednesday when it released the latest FOMC minutes—a rate hike in June is possible. Weak US growth in the first quarter of the year and a slowdown now, coupled with nonfarm growth below 200K jobs might have suggested a more tamed statement. Markets responded to the surprise with a selloff in Treasuries and equities and a surge in the Dollar. And yet, despite the explicit mention of June, a rate hike in September seems more likely.
Just like the December 2015 rate hike, the Fed softens the blow by throwing out the possibility of a rate hike before the conditions are actually ripe for one. By the time the Fed actually lifts rates, the money market and the bond markets have adjusted and the shock is minimal. Continue reading "Impact Of Fed Rate Hike: June vs. September"→
Traders, there are few things I needed to get off my chest about trading, trading analysts, trading marketers, and this industry in general. Once the 10-minute rant is over, I jump into the markets to show you some interesting dynamics that could be indicating a rate hike is coming. I look at the sector analysis, the Yen, NASDAQ, and a few others.
On a recent vacation to the Yucatan, my friend decided to get certified in scuba diving.
I, on the other hand, prefer breathing my air above water! But I did tag along with her to one of the classes, anyway. She learned how to handle and interpret all the various diver gauges: gas pressure, submersive pressure, depth, and on.
The one feature all those indicators had in common was a bold, red line to indicate the level the diver must obey to stay out of danger.
That's when it hit me: Scuba-diving is a lot like financial markets. Investors and traders jump in -- and use an array of safety gauges to keep them on the right side of price action.
Well, at least those investors and traders who use technical market indicators. For them, those bold, red lines indicating the point of danger -- those are equivalent to the most critical component of market analysis: protective stops. The second prices cross this line, it's time to "swim back up to the surface" and safely re-adjust your position.
For any investor/trader, then, the ultimate goal is to clearly identify these life-"lines" ahead of time, before jumping in. That, dear friends, is where our newest, FREE report "How to Set and Manage Stops With the Wave Principle" comes in.