The bond market was in its third week of terminal ennui, traders fidgeting, antsy, without volume, hence also without commissions, and complaining bitterly about the wait for the Fed ("I don't care what they do...just do something...get on with this, already.") Then, yesterday, a surprise: new orders for durable goods tanked 1.6 percent in May despite expectations for a strong rebound from the 2.6 percent dump in April. A one-month decline doesn't mean a thing...two in a row is a reminder that a strong economy is not guaranteed by contract. In another surprise, new claims for unemployment insurance ticked up to the 350,000 range, and long-term claims rose a ton; however, the claims series requires several weeks to confirm a trend. Home sales roared ahead, but some of the May spike may have been caused by buyers' efforts to get in the game ahead of a rapid rate rise. In every rate up-cycle, many economists insist that strong home sales have been caused by the buyers-in-a-hurry pheno...
by Brad Inman | on Mar 21, 2017
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