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INTEREST & INFLATION PRESSURES

12-17-15  

32

Submitted by Tyler Durden on 12/16/2015 

Fed Reveals Rate Hike "Plumbing" Details: Removes Cap On Reverse Repos, Limits Each Counterparty To $30 Billion

Perhaps even more important than the actual rate hike announcement, the one statement the market was particularly focused on was the Fed's "implementation note", which lays out the Fed's thought process on how it will actually raise rates in order to maintain the Fed Funds in the 0.25%-0.50% range. What it reveals is

  • that in addition to removing the daily limit on aggregate borrowings through its overnight reverse repurchase facility, previously set at $300 billion (recall that according to Citi, the Fed may need to drain up to $1 trillion in excess liquidity to effect the 25 bps hike), it will have a per counterparty limit of $30 billion per day, which may or may not be enough.
  • Separately, the Simon Potter's desk at the NY Fed announced "that the Desk anticipates that around $2 trillion of Treasury securities will be available for ON RRP operations to fulfill the FOMC’s domestic policy directive."

What is missing from the analysis is how the Fed will approach the fact that securities pledged to the Fed remain outside of the traditional repo pathway, and thus the liquidity shortage among the treasury market is likely to continue if not worsen. Most of these are in line with expectations. Now it remains to be seen if these theoretically necessary measures will also be practically sufficient.

The full details from the FED:

Decisions Regarding Monetary Policy Implementation

  • The Federal Reserve has made the following decisions to implement the monetary policy stance announced by the Federal Open Market Committee in its statement on December 16, 2015:
  • The Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System voted unanimously to raise the interest rate paid on required and excess reserve balances to 0.50 percent, effective December 17, 2015

As part of its policy decision, the Federal Open Market Committee voted to authorize and direct the Open Market Desk at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, until instructed otherwise, to execute transactions in the System Open Market Account in accordance with the following domestic policy directive:

"Effective December 17, 2015, the Federal Open Market Committee directs the Desk to undertake open market operations as necessary to maintain the federal funds rate in a target range of 1/4 to 1/2 percent, including: (1) overnight reverse repurchase operations (and reverse repurchase operations with maturities of more than one day when necessary to accommodate weekend, holiday, or similar trading conventions) at an offering rate of 0.25 percent, in amounts limited only by the value of Treasury securities held outright in the System Open Market Account that are available for such operations and by a per-counterparty limit of $30 billion per day; and (2) term reverse repurchase operations to the extent approved in the resolution on term RRP operations approved by the Committee at its March 17-18, 2015, meeting.

The Committee directs the Desk to continue rolling over maturing Treasury securities at auction and to continue reinvesting principal payments on all agency debt and agency mortgage-backed securities in agency mortgage-backed securities. The Committee also directs the Desk to engage in dollar roll and coupon swap transactions as necessary to facilitate settlement of the Federal Reserve's agency mortgage-backed securities transactions."

More information regarding open market operations may be found on the Federal Reserve Bank of New York's website.

In a related action, the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System voted unanimously to approve a 1/4 percentage point increase in the discount rate (the primary credit rate) to 1.00 percent, effective December 17, 2015. In taking this action, the Board approved requests submitted by the Boards of Directors of the Federal Reserve Banks of Boston, Philadelphia, Cleveland, Richmond, Atlanta, Chicago, St. Louis, Kansas City, Dallas, and San Francisco.

This information will be updated as appropriate to reflect decisions of the Federal Open Market Committee or the Board of Governors regarding details of the Federal Reserve's operational tools and approach used to implement monetary policy.

And from the NY Fed:

During its meeting on December 15–16, 2015, the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) directed the Open Market Trading Desk (the Desk) at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York (New York Fed), effective December 17, 2015, to undertake open market operations as necessary to maintain the federal funds rate in a target range of ¼ to ½ percent, including overnight reverse repurchase operations (ON RRPs) at an offering rate of 0.25 percent, in amounts limited only by the value of Treasury securities held outright in the System Open Market Account (SOMA) that are available for such operations and by a per-counterparty limit of $30 billion per day.

To determine the value of Treasury securities available for ON RRP operations, several factors need to be taken into account, as not all Treasury securities held outright in the SOMA will be available for use in such operations. First, some of the Treasury securities held outright in the SOMA are needed to conduct reverse repurchase agreements with foreign official and international accounts. Second, some Treasury securities are needed to support the securities lending operations conducted by the Desk. Additionally, buffers are needed to provide for possible changes in demand for these activities and for possible changes in the market value of the SOMA’s holdings of Treasury securities.

Taking these factors into account, the Desk anticipates that around $2 trillion of Treasury securities will
be available for ON RRP operations to fulfill the FOMC’s domestic
policy directive
. In the highly unlikely event that the value of bids received in an ON RRP operation exceeds the amount of available securities, the Desk will allocate awards using a single-price auction based on the stop-out rate at which the overall size limit is reached, with all bids below this rate awarded in full at the stop-out rate and all bids at this rate awarded on a pro rata basis at the stop-out rate.

These ON RRP operations will be open to all eligible RRP counterparties, will settle same-day, and will have an overnight tenor unless a longer term is warranted to accommodate weekend, holiday, and other similar trading conventions. Each eligible counterparty is permitted to submit one proposition for each ON RRP operation, in a size not to exceed $30 billion and at a rate not to exceed the specified offering rate. The operations will take place from 12:45 p.m. to 1:15 p.m. (Eastern Time). Any changes to these terms will be announced with at least one business day’s prior notice on the New York Fed’s website.

The results of these operations will be posted on the New York Fed’s website. The outstanding amounts of RRPs are reported on the Federal Reserve’s H.4.1 statistical release as a factor absorbing reserves in Table 1 and as a liability item in Tables 5 and 6.

 

MOST CRITICAL TIPPING POINT ARTICLES THIS WEEK -Dec 13th, 2015 - Dec 19th, 2015      
BOND BUBBLE     1
RISK REVERSAL - WOULD BE MARKED BY: Slowing Momentum, Weakening Earnings, Falling Estimates     2
GEO-POLITICAL EVENT     3
CHINA BUBBLE     4
JAPAN - DEBT DEFLATION     5

EU BANKING CRISIS

   

6

INTEREST & INFLATION PRESSURES

12-16-15  

32

Submitted by Tyler Durden on 12/16/2015

Fed May Have To Drain As Much As $1 Trillion In Liquidity To Push Rates 25 bps Higher

It's 2:00:01 pm and the Fed has just announced it will hike rates by 25 bps while using very dovish language to convey that just like "tapering was not tightening" in 2013, so "tightening isn't really tightening", and unleashing a massive buying order.

So far so good. But the real question is what does this mean for post-kneejerk market dynamics, and the one most important variable of all: liquidity.

The all too crucial, and overdue, answer to this question will be delivered when the Fed releases its "implementation note" concurrently with the FOMC statement which should explain all the nuances of just how the Fed will adjust the IOER-Reverse Repo piping that will be crucial to pull of the rate hike in practice, something which has been stumping 

Two weeks ago, we cited repo-market expert E.D. Skyrm who calculated that moving general collateral higher by 25bps would require the Fed draining up to $800 billion in liquidity:

"In 2013 on my website, I calculated that QE2 moved Repo rates, on average, 2.7 basis points for every $100B in QE. So, one very rough estimate moved GC 8 basis points and the other 2.7 basis points per hundred billion. In order to move GC 25 basis points higher, in a very rough estimate, the Fed needs to drain between $310B and $800B in liquidity."

That may be conservative.

According to Citigroup's latest estimate, the liquidity drain could be substantially greater. Here is the take of Jabaz Mathai

There will be a separate document from the NY Fed with details around the operational aspects of the liftoff. Of primary interest will be the size of the overnight reverse repo facility that the Fed will put in place to pull short rates higher. We don’t think it will be unlimited, but a size large enough that will keep short rates from falling below the 25bp floor – and the size could be as high as $1tn.

Putting this liquidity drain in context, the entire QE2 injected "only" $600 billion in liquidity in the span of many months, suggesting that as of tomorrow, the Fed may drain as much as 166% of its entire second quantitative easing operation overnight.

Whether that liquidity is inert and can be easily released by banks, and more importantly, non-banks without resulting in any additional risk tremors is the first $640 billion question that the Fed is facing. The second, third and fourth? Assuming a linear relationship and another 3 rate hikes until the end of 2014, this means that by the time short term rates hit 1%, the Fed may have soaked up as much $4 trillion in liquidity. Here one thing is certain: a $1 trillion drain may not have a material impact when starting from a $2.6 trillion excess reserve base. $4 trillion, however, will leave a mark (the Fed's entire balance sheet is $4.5 trillion) especially once the market starts to discount just how the rate hike plumbing takes place.

 

INTEREST & INFLATION PRESSURES

12-15-15  

32

Submitted by Tyler Durden on 12/14/2015

Will The Fed Hike Rates This Week?

The Only 'Data' That Matters

This is the real "data" that The Fed is "dependent" on...

As Deutsche Bank notes, The Fed is “right” to be raising rates. If they had done it earlier all the problems they now have to face, they wouldn’t have had to. If they do it later, those same problems will be even worse. Of course had they done it earlier there may well have been other problems. Like for example, no growth and a much higher unemployment rate. But that’s all water under the bridge. Fact is this Fed is ready to go. And markets know it!

But, what would it take for the Fed not to hike this coming meeting?

We think SPX through 1860.

Right through the 1900s, the Fed is likely to be complacent that this is normal market volatility.Pre-Prom nerves, if you will. It took the SPX just seven trading days to drop from 2102 to 1867 in August, an average of over 30 points a day. It could do the same but the pace would have to be closer to double. Possible but one wouldn’t make that a central forecast. More likely, the debate will quickly shift to how quickly the Fed stops tightening.

It appears, we have discussed previously,  that the logic of the median dots is to raise rates to dampen a would be credit bubble (and 'disable' the record leverage that low risk premia have allowed). It’s hard to know how far rates have to rise for that outcome but we suspect it's more than one hike and less than what our adjusted Taylor rule model for terminal funds suggests, which is around 2.5 percent. Plus or minus 1 percent therefore seems a reasonable first proxy, which would have the Fed hiking say through to September, 2016.

And then what...

It looks like the market is already pricing in the next inevitable round of QE.

 

Submitted by Martin Armstrong via ArmstrongEconomics.com,

 

IntRate-Manipulate

Those in power never understand markets. They are very myopic in their view of the world. The assumption that lowering interest rates will “stimulate” the economy has NEVER worked, not even once. Nevertheless, they assume they can manipulate society in the Marxist-Keynesian ideal world, but what if they are wrong?

By lowering interest rates, they ASSUME they will encourage people to borrow and thus expand the economy. They fail to comprehend that people will borrow only when they BELIEVE there is an opportunity to make money. Additionally, they told people to save for their retirement. Now they want to punish them for doing so by imposing negative interest rates (tax on money) to savings. They do not understand that lowering interest rates, when there is no confidence in the future anyhow, will not encourage people to start businesses and expand the economy. It wipes out the income of savers and then the only way to make and preserve money becomes ASSET investment, as in the stock market — not creating business startups.

So lowering interest rates is DEFLATIONARY, not inflationary, for it reduces disposable income. This is particularly true for the elderly who are forced back to work to compete for jobs, which increases youth unemployment.

Keynes-5Since the only way to make money has become ASSET INFLATION, they must withdraw money from banks and buy stocks. Now, they are in the hated class of the “rich” who are seen as the 1% because they are making money when the wage earner loses money as taxation rises and the economy declines. As taxes rise, machines are replacing workers and shrinking the job market, which only fuels more deflation. Then you have people like Hillary who say they will DOUBLE the minimum wage, which will cause companies to replace even more jobs with machines.

Democrats, in particular, are really Marxists. They ignore Keynes who also pointed out that lowering taxes would stimulate the economy. Keynes, in all fairness, did not advocate deficit spending year after year nor never paying off the national debt. Keynes wrote regarding taxes:

“Nor should the argument seem strange that taxation may be so high as to defeat its object, and that, given sufficient time to gather the fruits, a reduction of taxation will run a better chance, than an increase, of balancing the budget.”

Keynes obviously wanted to make it clear that the tax policy should be guided to the right level as to not discourage income. Keynes believed that government should strive to maximize income and therefore revenues. Nevertheless, Democrats demonized that as “trickle-down economics.”

Keynes explained further:

“For to take the opposite view today is to resemble a manufacturer who, running at a loss, decides to raise his price, and when his declining sales increase the loss, wrapping himself in the rectitude of plain arithmetic, decides that prudence requires him to raise the price still more–and who, when at last his account is balanced with nought on both sides, is still found righteously declaring that it would have been the act of a gambler to reduce the price when you were already making a loss.

TAX-CYC

This is the logic employed by those in power. They are raising taxes and destroying the economy; when revenues decline, they raise taxes further. The evidence that politicians are incompetent of managing the economy is simply illustrated here. Now, we have Hillary claiming that she will raise taxes on corporations, but that will reduce jobs for she will only attack small businesses and never the big entities and banks who fund her campaign.

Bill Murry on Taxes

So when it comes to sanity on interest rates or taxes, we really need to throw out of office anyone who is a professional career politician before they wipe out everything. The balance sheet is, as Keynes said, “ZERO on both sides.”

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PROF. THOMAS COLEMAN & LARRY SIEGEL: The Hidden Cost of Zero Interest Rate Policies – $1 TRILLION or 5% per Year Taken From US Savers

FRA’s Co-Founder Gordon T. Long interview Thomas Coleman and Larry Siegel on their paper, The Hidden Cost of Zero Real Interest Rates. Thomas Coleman is the executive director of the center of economic policy at the University of Chicago Harris School of Public Policy and has spent most of his career in the financial industry mainly in research, trading and model development for derivatives and trading other fixed income derivatives. Larry Siegel is the research director at the research foundation of the CFA institute and also the senior advisor at Ounavarra Capital. He is also an author and public speaker.

12-04-15-FRA-Coleman-Siegel-00-3

$1 TRILLION or 5% per Year Taken From US Savers

On financial repression Larry describes it as the use of market prices, in particular interest rate to transfer resources from party A to party B in this case from savers to government. According to him the government can then borrow at rates that are extraordinarily low and not a reflection of the true value of the money to the lenders.

On the paper, Thomas explains that there are 3 highlights. The First is detailed from a historical perspective. He says that from looking at history we can see that nominal rates are low by historical standards. According to him what really matters are real interest rates. He mentions that when taking into account nominal interest rate and inflation we currently have real interest rates as minus one percent. This means that the real value of saving in a zero rate deposit would be a loss in value at about one percent a year.

“Financial repression is a disastrous ongoing strategy”.

Thomas mentions that one of the costs of a negative real interest policy is that negative real rates potentially distort decision making. He explains that the real interest rate is the price that determines how much we consume or how much we want to consume, the price of consumption today versus consumption in the future and how such a policy disrupts such decisions. Thomas stresses that it is the real interest rates that matter and that one of the reasons nominal rates has gone down below zero especially in Europe is because inflation has trended lower.

“Businesses decide whether to undertake a project based on whether the return they expect to make on the project is greater than the cost of capital. If you force the apparent cost of capital low enough through a low interest rate policy a lot of projects will look good and profitable that aren’t if you applied a normal cost of capital to that product so this motivates businesses and consumers to do a lot of things they shouldn’t be doing”.  –Larry

On trying to understand the wealth transfer from savers to borrowers, Thomas likens it to an implicit tax. He says that it is more than just a transfer from households to government but also from one set of households to another, from older to younger there by reinforcing the idea that negative real interest rates are potentially a distortion to  the price of consumptions today and consumptions tomorrow and also what we save today versus spend today. The troubling thing with all this according to him is the potential distortions that arise as a result of a negative real interest policy.

Abstract written by Chukwuma Uwaga – chuwaga@gmail.com

PAPER:   The Hidden Cost of Zero Interest Rate Policies

 

 

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