Central Banks

Traveling Circus

After Wednesday’s policy statements by the Fed and Bank of Japan, a harsh light is being shined on the incredible nature of their communications. It would be wise in the current environment to structure investment portfolios with a pro-volatility bias.

Global Central Bank-Driven Stock Rally Fizzles; Crude Rebounds On Saudi Oil Production Cut Report

Until minutes ago, this week's rebound in global equities appeared to be running out of steam as oil retreated from a two-week high and a dollar slide ended.  However, as noted just around 6am, Reuters reported, citing as it usually does various "anonymous sources", that in a radical departure from its long-held policy of not cutting production, Saudi Arabia was prepared to cut production on condition that Iran freezes output, which led to an instant spike in crude.

The Fed's Missed Window & Failed Realizations

Unwittingly, the Fed has now become co-dependent on the markets. If they move to tighten monetary policy, the market sells-off impacting consumer confidence and pushes economic growth rates lower. With economic growth already running below 2%, there is very little leeway for the Fed to make a policy error at this juncture. Therefore, the Fed remains trapped between keeping the financial markets happy and trying to resolve their monetary dilemma. The problem is that eventually something has to give and it will likely not be the outcome the Fed continues to hope for.