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by CareyBot

Most of a bond-market fright has passed, and long-term rates are back to the low end of a range that has held since last July: low-fee mortgages are 5.625 percent and the 10-year T-note is 4.13 percent. Long Treasurys had traded 4.22 percent in anticipation of all the things that could go wrong next week. On Wednesday the Fed will hike another quarter-point to 2.5 percent, but hints at its future intentions in the companion statement are the scary part. Next Friday will bring news of January payrolls, each month's single most-powerful bond-market-moving datum, each defying all attempts at forecast. Then there's the Iraq election, the State of the Union and congressional reaction – in sum, enough to make sensible traders get under their desks and stay there. Offsetting all that this ...