201712.18
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Chinese Really Are Not Tightening, Though They Would Be Thrilled If You Thought That

Why would any central bank try to disguise the fact that it is being highly accommodative in its own money markets? That would be a strange place to start, made all the more so by the further observation the same central bank is perfectly happy if you thought it was doing the opposite. Cryptic introduction…

201708.17
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The Fed Tries To Tighten By Rates, But The System Instead Tightens By Repo

The Fed voted for the first federal funds increase in almost a decade on December 15, 2015. It was the official end of ZIRP, and though taking so many additional years to happen, to many it marked the start of recovery. The yield on the 2-year Treasury Note was 98 bps that day. A lot…

201707.25
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China’s Banks Deliver RMB In June

Updated statistics from the People’s Bank of China shed some light on changing money conditions in RMB. The Big 4 State-owned banks have been the primary liquidity conduit for all policies and activities going back to 2014. These institutions had been since the middle of 2016 increasingly squeezed as to excess funding available to be…

201706.26
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Follow-Up on Bills; Supply Side

Returning to the theme of the parallel evolutionary developments in the early 20th century as compared to the last decades of it, in 1908 famed Gilded Age industrialist Andrew Carnegie wrote what seems today a misplaced article for New York Outlook magazine. The steel magnate lamented the state of American banking, which he called within…

201706.26
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Chart of Last Week: In Need of Official Address

According to the US Treasury, the calculated equivalent treasury bill yield for the 4-week maturity was 76 bps at Friday’s close. At such a short time frame there isn’t actually a single instrument that creates the rate, more of an amalgamation (spline) of various 4-week securities staggered on their own. The bill maturing this week,…

201701.20
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Memories of 2a7 Fade, But Commercial Paper Remains Relevant Anyway

If you are an enterprising financial firm with spare cash toward the end of the business day, you have several options for it. Primary among them is the Fed’s Reverse Repo (RRP) desk which will pay you 50 bps interest with your cash secured by both the reputation of the Federal Reserve as well as…

201612.29
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RHINO

This is a repost; originally published Dec. 22, 2016. The federal funds rate target is essentially nothing more than a communication tool. You don’t have to take my word for it, the same conclusion has been reached at the level of the FOMC itself. There was, in fact, some debate, though limited in scope, in…

201611.22
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Repo On The African Plain

That the repo market, as noted yesterday, has been beset by a persistent collateral shortage is relatively uncontroversial. Where once large blocks of MBS tranches were central to interbank flow and funding, their absence is still a fact of operation though that repudiation was a very long time ago. Even with that backdrop, however, it…

201605.03
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Benign Foreign Dollar Buffer or Systemic Collateral Issues, Continued Illiquidity and ‘Dollar Strain’?

There isn’t a whole lot known about the Federal Reserve’s Foreign Reverse Repo accommodation, and I believe that is intentional. The rate which the Fed pays to “borrow cash” from foreign central banks and governments is unknown. What is known is just how much in total the Fed is “accommodating” foreign dollar business. This RRP,…

201602.22
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Way Beyond Reasonable Belief

It has become cliché that commentary continues toward the increasingly absurd at the expense of the obvious and all because Janet Yellen says there can’t possibly be anything wrong. The degree to which the broader markets agree in that sense has certainly lessened of late, but that only suggests the increasingly bizarre platitudes offered to…