The roller-coaster ride continues, with equities mostly reversing yesterday’s plunge.
Gold and silver are a bit lower along with Treasuries and the dollar. Oil is bouncing.
On the news front...
Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen and fellow regulators are exploring ways they could extend bank deposit protection to ALL deposits, rather than just the first $250,000. Mid-sized and smaller banks are worried money will keep flowing to the mega-banks since depositors know the government will backstop the Big Boys out of systemic risk fears, but won’t necessarily protect smaller institutions.
Morgan Stanley released a note yesterday saying that the bear market (its words) was nearing its end...but that the last phase will be the most painful. Meanwhile, Bank of America’s latest fund manager survey shows that 42% of money managers expect a recession in the next year. That’s a big jump from 24% in the February survey. Where’s the optimism, people?
Meanwhile, Amazon (AMZN) is swinging the axe again, with plans to cut another 9,000 workers. That comes on top of 18,000 layoffs it already announced, and these cuts will extend to formerly hot divisions like cloud computing and advertising.
Lastly, today is Day 1 of the two-day Federal Open Market Committee meeting. Fed policymakers will decide whether to raise rates 25 basis points, 50 bps, or not at all. Markets are largely expecting a 25-point hike. I suspect we’ll also get comments making it clear that the Fed wants to wait and see how the banking crisis and economic data shakes out before taking another step. We’ll find out tomorrow.