The markets, both stock and bond, were transfixed on the FOMC minutes this week. I know, it really doesn’t sound exciting to me either and I live this stuff. But let’s put in more interesting terms.

It is sort of like if you had a big family gathering (yes, even including weird Uncle Mike) and the entire conversation, on some important topic, was taped and then written into minutes and distributed to the media. Now there are no names mentioned, but we all know who says what (or we think we do) and now, whether we like it or not, the neighbors know just how weird Uncle Mike really is. And, in the end, we all know who makes the final decision on the topic-whoever controls the trust account.

That’s how it works at the Fed. They have a meeting, they take notes and the notes get distributed with no names attached. But the media, after years of this game, pretty much knows who says what and while there may be spirited debate, in the end the decision is really made by the controller of the purse strings-our friend Ben. So while the stock market sank for two days after hearing that, (oh crap!) the Fed members don’t all agree (really?!), and there is fear and loathing of inflation (again) and wide-eyed concern over what the value of this massive portfolio of bonds might look like once rates go up (and they will), in the end, for now, nothing is going to change.

So what does that mean to us after all the drama and diva’s talking? More of the same. Stock market and housing market increases (asset prices up), relatively low interest rates (inflation flat or down). Pretty simple stuff. Now please don’t nod off at your desk though because if Europe has a hiccup (not entirely unlikely, have you seen the latest on French working “conditions”? Hour lunches, hour BREAKS, 3 hours of talking and 3 hours of work each day…not my words, check this out How stupid do you think we are?) or Congress can’t make the decisions it needs to soon (hhmmmnnn) then the entire take on the dinner table conversation will change in a hurry.

So after a bit of back and forth this week we are pretty much where we started-the 10 year is near 2.00 (1.96% at the moment) and mortgage rates, while not as low as we were accustom to, are still allowing the refinance market to keep rolling. So, for now, relax and have a good weekend. Below are a few economic news headlines from the week from the WSJ.

Best to all of you~have a great weekend!

Katie

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