AgentIndustry News

Rate-rise threatens economic relapse

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The economic optimists are still in charge of markets, rates and stocks still rising. However, the divergence is widening between them and those worried about credit and latent weakness. It may take a month or two to figure whose stubbornness has merit. Markets first, then new economic data. The 10-year T-note has jumped to 3.85 percent this morning, the highest since last fall, and even two-year Treasurys rose in yield today in belief that a Fed rate-hike has come closer. Mortgages have gone right along to 5.625 percent with lowest fees -- the highest since the Fed announced its intentions to buy at Thanksgiving. A 1 percent rate-rise in two weeks has stopped refinance activity altogether, and purchase markets also suffer. Stocks have now recovered all 2009 losses, and the Dow's press up on 9,000 has retraced one-third of its overall collapse. A mechanical pattern typical of all major moves either up or down, these retracements also typically have little predictive value. W...