Saved...saved, we were, first thing this morning. Mortgage rates this week began their inevitable rise through 6 percent, pushed by T-bonds 4.43 percent, headed for 4.6 percent-plus...then at 8:30 EDT, flashing on traders' screens worldwide, "NOVEMBER PAYROLLS GAIN 112,000, ONE-HALF FORECAST, OCTOBER REVISED DOWN." Traders holding enormous short bond positions were instantly de-pantsed, and the whole long end of the yield curve came down .2 percent or more as the shorts had to buy to cover their collectively exposed derrieres. Low-fee mortgages are back down to 5.75 percent, which Freddie Mac's survey will not discover until next Thursday. Today's rate improvement feels like a temporary reprieve, not true salvation. For three years running I have been a skeptic on the strength and sustainability of economic expansion, but I think the odds now favor rather more strength and inflation risk, and higher interest rates at all maturities. "Inevitable" is a big word to use, up in that se...
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