Long-term interest rates and commodities are in the natural rebound upward following any straight-line decline. The 10-year T-note is 4.64 percent (from 4.54 percent), taking mortgages a little above 6.25 percent (6.125 percent bottom), gold $605 (from $575), all in step with energy: oil $63 (from $59), and natural gas $5.45 (from $4.75). Only gasoline is still unwinding, and wholesale $1.48 might break two bucks at the pump after Halloween. All of these markets are struggling to identify the slope of economic slowdown. "If" is in the past; the economy is slowing, and the Fed's "moderation" is the most optimistic description in play. (Fed note: from now to the election, the Fed will attempt total invisibility, avoiding the appearance of favoritism with either party.) You know we're in a slowdown when every observer drags out the ol' soft landing and hard landing economic airport, and then drifts to metaphorical sea, hedging his or her forecast with the always-slow-to-turn supertanker....
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