Friday, April 9, 2010

US Futures Point Lower

U.S. futures are pointing to a lower open after warnings yesterday, from Ben Bernanke that the economy is “not out of the woods” and Kansas City Fed President Thomas Hoenig about the dangers of low interest rates, spooked investors and spilled over into the morning’s trading. Traders also worried about the health of the Greek economy and its debt problems.

· In the U.S., initial jobless claims came in at 460,000, higher than consensus expectations of 435,000 and up from last week’s upwardly revised 442,000. Continuing claims came in lower than expected with a reading of 4,550K

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Banks- Easy Profits

Today the quest for yield, any kind of "safe" yield, goes on and on. The Fed has taken short rates down to zero. This allows the banks to borrow at extremely low rates and then to buy Treasury bonds at yields near to 4% . This allows the banks to accumulate fat, almost risk free, income. Thus the Fed has taken care of its own. The big banks are flush with cash again. And all the while Americans are gasping for income like fish out of water. Leading bankers are making more money than ever, while the poor slob on the street is lying awake at night wondering how he's going to make the overdue payment on his home. Of course, his home is "underwater," since his home is worth less than his mortgage.

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