The Fed's UST-POMO Pyramid Scheme Exposed
In a brilliant piece of investigative reporting, Chris Martenson (original article here) has uncovered that the Fed, merely a week after issuing $28 billion in 7 year bonds (which Zero Hedge discussed previously) via its puppet, the US Treasury, of which $10 billion ended up being purchased by primary dealers, has turned and bought 47% of the primary allocated bonds in Open Market Purchases. This is undisputed monetization removed simply via one primary dealer and less than 5 days of temporal separation in order to leave no easy trace. As Martenson points out:
"A more honest and open approach would have been for the Fed to simply
buy them outright at the auction but this way, using "primary dealers"
and "POMOs" and all these other extra steps the basic fact that the Fed
is openly monetizing US government debt is effectively hidden from a
not-too-terribly inquisitive US press and public."
The question is did the Fed implicitly tell the primary dealers they are merely holding the treasuries for a flip, and that it would acquire them immediately. Absent this $4.8 billion in effectively monetized bonds, what would the Bid To Cover have been for the primaries? Would this have been the second practically failed auction for USTs after the deplorable 5 year auction results a day prior? One wonders if there would have been 62% indirect interest in these bonds (which the day before had a measly 32.5% indirect bid) if the purchasers were aware of the Fed's immediate prompt monetization of a large part of the directs' balance.
It is truly a sad state of affairs when the Fed has to manipulate public and media perception in this way, and has to cover up for the complete lack of interest in US Treasuries.
Here is the evidence Martenson dug up:
Martenson's conclusion needs no elaboration:
"The speed of the shell game is accelerating.
This immediate repurchase of newly auction bonds by the Fed tells us
that demand for these bonds is not nearly as high as advertised, and
that things are not quite as strong as represented.
And oh, by the way, don't expect any stock market weakness while so
many billions are being shoveled out the Fed and into the pockets of
the primary dealers. They'll have to do something with all that freshly minted cash....."
Zero Hedge salutes CM for this brilliant piece of sleuthing: now if only the MSM would have the guts to demonstrate the pyramid scheme that the US Bond and Equity markets have become.