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Bob Carey
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  US Economy and Credit Markets Ended March 15, 2019
Posted Under: Weekly Market Commentary

U.S. government bond prices were up slightly last week, and the 10-year Treasury yield moved below 2.60% from nearly 3.25% in November 2018 as weaker-than-expected economic and inflation data increased expectations that the Fed will forgo raising rates this year. The Consumer Price Index, excluding food and energy, increased 0.1% in February and 2.1% over the last 12 months. The increase in February came in below expectations, which gave the appearance of cooling inflation and helped push U.S. government bond prices higher. New-home sales fell 6.9% in January over the prior month, which was below expectations, while new-home sales in December were revised up from 621,00 annually to 652,000. Soft manufacturing data released on Friday also helped push bond prices higher. According to the Fed, manufacturing fell 0.4% in February after falling 0.5% in January. This week, the Federal Open Market Committee meets on Tuesday and Wednesday and is widely expected to hold interest rates steady. Major economic reports (related consensus forecasts, prior data) for the upcoming week include: Tuesday: January Final Durable Goods Orders (0.4%, 0.4%), January Factory Orders (0.2%, 0.1%); Wednesday: March 20 FOMC Rate Decision – Upper Bound (2.50%, 2.50%), March 15 MBA Mortgage Applications (N/A, 2.3%); Thursday: March 16 Initial Jobless Claims (225k, 229k), February Leading Index (0.1%, -0.1%); Friday: March Preliminary Markit US Manufacturing PMI (53.6, 53.0), February Existing Home Sales (5.10m, 4.94m), January Wholesale Inventories MoM (0.0%, 1.1%).
Posted on Monday, March 18, 2019 @ 8:04 AM • Post Link Share: 
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These posts were prepared by First Trust Advisors L.P., and reflect the current opinion of the authors. They are based upon sources and data believed to be accurate and reliable. Opinions and forward looking statements expressed are subject to change without notice. This information does not constitute a solicitation or an offer to buy or sell any security.
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