FOMC outcome

According to the Cleveland Fed, the most likely outcome for the two-day FOMC meeting on Tuesday & Wednesday of this week is a 25 basis point cut resulting in a 2% fed funds rate. The second most likely outcome is no rate cut holding the fed funds rate steady at 2.25%.

April 23rd Closing Bell – What we’re reading…

Ambac Posts Loss on CDO Writedown, New Business Drop Bondholders Lucky to Get 10 Cents in Looming Defaults Nice list of various Web 2.0 websites – 2008 Webware award winners Mac Sales Boost Apple’s Profit A Strong Dollar Policy?

Triple-A Failure

This Sunday’s New York Times magazine will include an excellent article on how the credit ratings agencies went about assigning triple-A ratings to pools of subprime mortgages. In my opinion, it is required reading for all fixed-income investors. Triple-A Failure By ROGER LOWENSTEIN From the investment bank’s point of view, the key to the deal [...]

April 18th – What we’re reading…

50-Week Moving Average of AAII % Bears Hits New Record High Auction rate securities still hurting LIBOR is rising. Is it being manipulated? Unemployment claims rose to 372k last week

April 17th – What we’re reading…

Beige book indicates weakness Beige book report – released April 16th – PDF download Philly Fed index Gas price manipulation probe

April 16th – What we’re reading…

Worldwide PC shipments up 12% Top 10 hedge fund earners in 2007 IBM issues upbeat forecast Tech Firms Cradle Cash

Closing bell reading…

The comeback of private equity Nearing the end of Fed rate cuts The TSLF today received $33 billion in bids on up to $50 billion in lending with a stop-out rate of 0.25. A clear sign liquidity problems are improving.

Kentucky v. Davis update

Bloomberg provides this update on the Kentucky v. Davis Supreme Court decision. It is taking awhile to get a ruling. The court heard arguments Nov. 5 on the special tax breaks that 42 states provide to municipal bonds issued within their borders. At the time, many analysts and lawyers predicted a quick decision that would [...]

April 10th – What we’re reading…

Lehman Brothers bailed out 5 short-term debt funds Senate passes housing aid package 84-12 Volcker Decries Fed Response to ‘Mother of All Crises’ March retail sales flat Countrywide is still offering a 1-year CD with a 4.20% APY. A $10k min purchase is required. We recommend keeping all CD purchases within FDIC insurance limits.

April 7th – What we’re reading…

Press your luck Alan Greenspan responds to his critics Goldman Sachs keeps its leverage Barron’s offers some high-yield ideas

Unemployment & Nonfarm Payroll charts

Below is an updated five year chart of the Unemployment rate:   Below is an updated five year chart of the three month & six month nonfarm payroll averages:

4/4 BLS Employment situation

According to today’s BLS Employment Situation report, the unemployment rate in the U.S. rose from to 5.1% in March, up from 4.8%. The nonfarm payroll jobs count declined by 80,000. Over the past three months, payroll employment has declined by 232,000. Here is an excerpt from the report: THE EMPLOYMENT SITUATION: MARCH 2008 The unemployment [...]

NY Fed’s guide to lending programs

With all the new Fed lending programs now in effect, most created in the past few months, the NY Fed has published this PDF detailing the high-level differences between each of the programs.

Where Are the Customer’s Yachts?

One of the most read stories on Bloomberg today is: Bill Miller Has `Hideous’ Quarter With Old, New Picks . Now, I have nothing against Bill Miller – his impressive long-term track record speaks for itself. However, one does have to wonder if Mr. Miller has any regrets about his decision to purchase his first [...]

Put/Call data thru 4/3/08

Below is a graph of the 10-day (RED) and 60-day (GREEN) put/call data relative to the S&P 500 over the past three years through today’s close on 4/3/08. The 60-day appears to be topping out at an all-time record high level of 1.10. If recent history is any guide, as the 60-day rolls back down, [...]