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The Day Ahead: Lowered Expectations for Econ Data and Auctions
Posted to: MBS Commentary
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 7:18 AM

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Two to three years ago, today's lineup of economic data and market events would have been much more meaningful.  International Trade at 8:30am would have stood a good chance to be the most meaningful market mover of the day and even Wholesale Inventories at 10am might have had a detectable impact on bond markets and MBS.  Even as late as mid 2011, Treasury Auctions were--well--Treasury Auctions!  In that bygone era, today's 3yr auction at 1pm would have been worth tuning in for, but in a world where Fed policy explicitly conveys the expectation for 'low rates through at least mid-2015,' and the global economic outlook hearkens stagnant, slow growth, short term Treasury auctions become more a matter of Housekeeping than detecting market preferences.

This has been "the story" of any given day for markets, in varying degrees, since mid 2011.  At times, the traditional market movers have asked for a bit more of the spotlight--especially when they were leaned on as an early indication of QE3 likelihoods--but they've generally ceded that spotlight to "other stuff."  In the current case, said "stuff" is the triumvirate of the European debt crisis, FOMC Policy, and the Fiscal Cliff.  You may have noticed that only 1 out of those 3 operates on any sort of regular schedule. 

Indeed the FOMC Statement on Wednesday looms large as it's expected to contain the announcement that the Fed's Treasury purchases will somehow be extended in 2013.  Emphasis, however, is on the "somehow."  There's no way to be sure exactly what the Fed will announce, and that's likely going a long way toward keeping a lid on volatility and inspired directional movement between now and then.  Mix in the other two ingredients and there's even more reason to play it close to home on Tuesday, barring of course, an unforeseen headline of sufficient important to nudge trading levels to a slightly higher or lower sideways grind.

 

MBS Live Econ Calendar:

Week Of Mon, Dec 10 2012 - Fri, Dec 14 2012

Time

Event

Period

Unit

Forecast

Prior

Mon, Dec 10

10:00

Employment Trends

Nov

--

--

108.2

Tue, Dec 11

08:30

International trade mm $

Oct

bl

-42.9

-41.6

10:00

Wholesale inventories mm

Oct

%

0.4

1.1

13:00

3-Yr Note Auction

--

bl

32.0

--


FOMC Meeting Begins

--

--

--

--

Wed, Dec 12

07:00

Mortgage market index

w/e

--

--

877.0

07:00

Mortgage refinance index

w/e

--

--

4856.7

08:30

Export prices mm

Nov

%

-0.1

0.0

08:30

Import prices mm

Nov

%

-0.5

0.5

11:30

10yr Note Auction

--

bl

21.0

--

12:30

FOMC Announcement

N/A

%

--

0.25

Thu, Dec 13

08:30

Initial Jobless Claims

w/e

k

370

370

08:30

Producer Price Index

Nov

%

-0.5

-0.2

08:30

Retail Sales

Nov

%

+0.5

-0.3

10:00

Business inventories mm

Oct

%

0.3

0.7

13:00

30-Yr Bond Auction

--

bl

13.0

--

Fri, Dec 14

08:30

Consumer Price Index

Nov

%

-0.2

+0.1

08:58

Markit Manufacturing PMI

Dec

%

52.3

52.8

09:15

Industrial Production

Nov

%

+0.3

-0.4

* mm: monthly | yy: annual | qq: quarterly | "w/e" in "period" column indicates a weekly report

* Q1: First Quarter | Adv: Advance Release | Pre: Preliminary Release | Fin: Final Release

* (n)SA: (non) Seasonally Adjusted

* PMI: "Purchasing Managers Index"




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