Long-term rates jumped this week, and the 10-year T-note rose to 3.6 percent from 3.28 percent at last week's low, the principal push delivered by a 500-point surge in the Dow. Mid-summer is the "silly season," when a shortage of serious news elevates "Man Bites Dog" to the front page. This stock rally was short-covering, and bonds are on constant selling edge because of runaway deficits. New data could be read as green-shoot or L-shaped non-recovery, but none were trend-changers. Housing permits and starts rose a bit above forecast, to the high-500,000 annual range from high-400,000 in last winter's pit, but housing is going nowhere, loan applications flat. Total retail sales improved in June only because gasoline cost more. Some silly-season items this year...
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