Sunday, October 5, 2014

The Week Ahead: Money policy minutes, a flood of Fedsters

A low-key week in economic reporting, with only one event having the potential of producing a major impact on the markets: The release of the Sept. 17 Federal Open Market Committee minutes, on Wednesday at 2 p.m. New York time.

The FOMC released an immediate statement about the meeting at its conclusion, including a list of members dissenting from the majority's monetary policy, so the full minutes have value mainly in bringing to light nuances that the meeting statement missed.

Leading indicators (in descending order of importance):

The interest rate spread between 10-year Treasuries and the federal funds rate, reported continually during market hours.

The M2 money supply, at 4:30 p.m. Thursday.

The average hourly workweek in manufacturing from the employment report, at 8:30 a.m. Friday.

The S&P 500 index, reported continually during market hours.

Average weekly initial jobless claims, at 8:30 a.m. Thursday. 

Other items of interest:

Wednesday: Petroleum inventories at 10:30 a.m.

Friday: Import and export prices at 8:30 a.m., and the Treasury budget, showing the surplus or deficit, at 2 p.m.

I also keep an eye on the Baltic Dry Index, updated daily.


Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen attends a meeting of the Financial Stability Oversight Council, chaired by Treasury Secretary Jack Lew, on Monday at 3 p.m. Part of the meeting will be public. The agenda is available here.

Fed Vice Chairman Stanley Fischer addresses the International Monetary Fund's annual meeting at 5 p.m. Saturday. His topic: The Federal Reserve and the Global Economy. Information about the IMF meeting, including a full schedule, may be read here. In Thursday's session, at 1:10 p.m., Fischer participates in a panel discussion with European Central Bank President Mario Draghi.

Five other FOMC members are out and about during the week: Minneapolis Fed Pres. Narayana Kocherlakota and New York Fed Pres. William Dudley on Tuesday, Fed Gov. Daniel Garullo on Thursday, and Philadelphia Fed Pres. Charles Plosser and Dallas Fed Pres. Richard Fischer on Friday.

Three FOMC alternates take to the podium: Chicago Fed Pres. Charles Evans on Wednesday, San Francisco Fed Pres. John Williams on Thursday, and Richmond Fed Pres. Jeffrey Lacker on Thursday and Friday

Also making appearances are two others of the Fed glitterati who don't have seats on the FOMC this year: Kansas City Fed Pres. Esther George on Monday and Friday, St. Louis Fed Pres. James Bullard on Thursday.

Analytical universe

This week I shall be analyzing new bull and bear signals among 1,248 mid-cap and larger stocks and exchange-traded funds.

Trading calendar

By my rules, I'm trading November options and later for the short legs of vertical, diagonal and calendar spreads and covered calls, and for all legs of butterfly spreads and iron condors. I'm trading January options and later for single calls and puts as well as straddles. Shares, of course, are good at any time.

Good trading.

-- Tim Bovee, Portland, Oregon, Oct. 5 2014

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