Today was "nice" in the highly charged sense of the word where it's meant to convey a certain acceptability and a certain absence of excellence.  Bonds didn't weaken in any disconcerting way.  They even managed to make some gains--both at the open and heading into the last hour of the day--all without any help from the stock market during domestic hours (stocks improved). 

All that stuff is "nice," but what are the counterpoints?  

First off, today's closing levels are only an improvement compared to the worst closing levels in years. 10yr y ields ended up right in line with prevailing "mid 2.8's," which have been intact for 5 straight days.  Additionally, there was no attempt to break below 2.82%--roughly the same floor of resistance that blocked our progress yesterday morning.

As has been the case, we'd really need to see technical floors broken for several consecutive days before considering a shift in the broader uptrend in rates.  What, then, are we to make of the 2 past days of relative resilience?  In short, bonds stand a chance to consolidate at current levels.  That is, they may improve a bit more and generally avoid a massive break above recent highs. 

That pattern could continue for a few days or weeks before the selling resumes and we're off to more new long-term highs.  Of course, there's always some small chance that the pattern could actually reverse and give way to deeper correction in rates, but I personally think we'd need some serious help there (from something like an even bigger correction in stocks.

The final counterpoint is this: nothing about the past 2 days may matter very much after tomorrow morning's Consumer Price Index (CPI) data.  This is the new NFP when it comes to bond market movement potential.  Current forecasts see the year-over-year CORE number falling to 1.7% from 1.8% last month.  If it falls to 1.6% or below, we could see a deeper correction in rates.  But if it holds at 1.8% or better, it could quickly be GAME-ON for the broader trend higher in rate.

MBS Pricing Snapshot
Pricing shown below is delayed, please note the timestamp at the bottom. Real time pricing is available via MBS Live.
FNMA 3.5
99-30 : +0-06
10 YR
2.8367 : -0.0183
Pricing as of 2/13/18 4:28PMEST

Today's Reprice Alerts and Updates
A recap of Alerts and Updates provided to MBS Live subscribers.
10:53AM  :  Holding Ground Fairly Well; Quiet Market Conditions Helping

MBS Live Chat Highlights
A recap of featured comments from the Live Discussion on the MBS Live Dashboard.
Matthew Graham  :  "No Crystal balls. See Weinstein's comment. If 10s go to 3.0%, average rates should be around 4.625-4.75."
Victor Mendoza  :  "i'm asking more as a benchmark and not as a float strategy. If it were to jump 2.85 and steadily rise to 3.0, what would we expect. I have many builder deals and my April and after closings need an re-adjustment with realistic rates. It's a precarious ledge to not scare them off with 5.0's or low 5.0's if we may be 4.5s to 5.0. anyone have a 2-3 month crystal ball with a guarantee."
Ted Rood  :  "Many of those same "experts" said stocks would tank 20%+, or continue soaring, or both."
Matt Hodges  :  "talking heads are just that. they don't have clients who can afford 4.75%, but not 5.25%"
scott weinstein  :  "I don't see how 3.0 0 is max for this year considering where we are now"
Victor Mendoza  :  "Question for the experts. Many talking heads state that they see 3.00 as the max this year for 10 year. Is it possible what this can equate to rates if we reached this ."