Industry NewsMarkets & Economy

Economic genie is out of wishes

Commentary: Welcome to the political fun house
Published on Sep 3, 2010

One of these monthly payroll reports will signal a turn in the economy to self-sustaining growth, and splatter the bond and mortgage markets all over the windshield. Not today. The payroll positive in August: Non-government jobs rose by 67,000 (half of those in unaffordable health care, the only sector to gain jobs every month of the recession). Details were thin cheer: Overall employment fell 54,000 in August, as cuts in one-time Census workers and other government jobs overwhelmed the private gain; and a June-July revision found that we did not lose 352,000 jobs, only 229,000. Flat, going nowhere ... but not a double-dip. Therefore, sell safety-bonds: 10-year T-notes jumped to 2.75 percent from 2.47 percent on Wednesday, but mortgages have held at 4.5 percent. In the absence of double-dip or recovery, the policy vacuum hardened. The doves at the Fed need ugly data to push the hawks aside, and allow hatching of more quantitative easing (call it QE2?), the direct purchas...

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