What to pay attention to in the finance ‘silly season’

Raising the overnight cost of money is fraught with risks, but sooner or later the Fed may have to
  • Stimulus hopes have stock markets everywhere trading happily upward, even though bad news is the source of stimulus.
  • Here in the States, the bond market has just about stopped trading, only minuscule changes day-to-day, and mortgage rates aren't moving, either.
  • Sooner or later one of several pregnant matters overseas will deliver, and the Fed may be forced to raise rates, affecting mortgage rates.

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In the news business, the end of July through August is known as the “silly season.” So slow that page one carries “Man Bites Dog.” So it is in finance, also. My parents and grandparents were political junkies, scattered from Bull Moosers to Dixiecrats. They did manage polite discussion. Constantly. Thus I am a junkie, too, although an anti-partisan (anti any party), and I have memories of every national convention from 1960 forward. Just as unprecedented lunacy in Cleveland began to pierce my armor, my wacky hometown came to the rescue. This week in distractions In Nederland, a village just west of Boulder, on Wednesday a lemur on a leash bit a 2-year-old girl (“nibbled” is more accurate, as no injury). Local gendarmes pursued the owner while using the radio call sign, "Lemur Command." The nibble aside, Lemurgate is a criminal offense -- in Colorado, it is illegal to keep a primate as a pet. Cleveland might have considered a similar ordinance. And Philadel...