So now we know what happens when the Fed actually walks the walk, after talking the talk for the better part of 2016. The broad averages spasmed, initially the ‘wrong’ way; then they plunged, albeit not far enough or for long enough to convince anyone that something had changed. When the trade-desk maniacs come to their senses, which on a good day approximates 20% of the reasoning power of a staple gun, perhaps they’ll figure out that, in fact, nothing has changed. If anything, investor perceptions should be at least somewhat more bullish now, since it could take Yellen & Co. another year before they muster the gumption to do it again. Not that they won’t continue to talk about it between now and Armageddon. But at least we’ll know that they don’t really mean it, and that unless GDP growth doubles in the first year of Trump’s presidency, they will never, ever even begin to contemplate honest-to-goodness tightening.
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