It was a tale of two headlines today; one of the scheduled; the other, a surprise. The schedule economic data at 10am showed ISM's Non-Manufacturing Index higher than expected at the best levels since 2005. While this is something that would have happened on any moderately-sized improvement, it didn't help bond markets. In addition, Factory Orders data was also stronger than expected. And all of the above followed a moderately weaker overnight session.
But bond markets remain keyed in to stock market movements, both at home and abroad. When the S&P and European markets reversed course just after 10:30am, bonds had their cue to calm down and do the same. During the process, headlines crossed the wires regarding a potential Russian invasion of Ukraine.
For some reason, markets decided this mattered today, but it was little more than speculation from Poland's Foreign Minister Sikorski based on increased troop presence at the Ukrainian border. To be sure, an invasion is and has been an ongoing possibility! But it's hard to see why it is or should be any more of a possibility based on Sikorski's comments.
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