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S&P 500 Investors Focus on 2022-Q1 as Fed Sets Rate Hike Expectations

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If the S&P 500 (Index: SPX) were doing anything out of the ordinary, we’d be happy to report it. But following the Lévy flight event of the first week of January 2022, we can’t say the index is behaving unexpected in any way.

That assessment is confirmed in the latest update to the alternative futures forecast chart, where we find the trajectory of the S&P 500 falls within the range we would expect for investors focusing on the current quarter of 2022-Q1.

Alternative Futures - S&P 500 - 2022Q1 - Standard Model (m=-2.5 from 16 June 2021) - Snapshot on 14 Jan 2022

The market-moving headlines we found in the newstream of the week that was point to a substantial effort by the Federal Reserve’s minions to set expectations of multiple rate hikes in 2022, starting in March.

Monday, 10 January 2022
  • Signs and portents for the U.S. economy:
  • Expectations rise that Fed minions will hike rates four times in 2022, Fed minions planning out balance sheet reduction:
  • NY Fed’s Logan says redemption caps can ensure smooth balance sheet reduction
  • Fed’s Clarida to resign two weeks early amid trading controversy
  • ECB minions standing by to leap into action if needed:
  • Stocks fall further as U.S. yield climb unnerves investors
  • Tuesday, 11 January 2022
    • Signs and portents for the U.S. economy:
  • Fed minions seeks to set expectations for faster stimulus bond buy taper and slower pace for rate hikes:
  • Fed should run down balance sheet ‘earlier rather than later’ – George
  • Fed’s Bostic says three hikes, fast balance sheet runoff needed for inflation fight
  • Bigger trouble developing in Mexico, rest of the world:
  • ECB minions say they can be trusted:
  • Wall Street closes higher after Powell testimony eases investors’ concerns
  • Wednesday, 12 January 2022
    • Signs and portents for the U.S. economy:
  • Fed minions say four rate hikes needed in 2022, want to shrink Fed’s balance sheet:
  • ECB minions like their rules:
  • Wall Street closes higher as inflation data supports Fed bets
  • Thursday, 13 January 2022
    • Signs and portents for the U.S. economy:
  • Fed minions working hard to shape rate hike expectations. Starting in March 2022:
  • Fed’s Evans: we need to be adjusting monetary policy
  • Fed’s Barkin says timing and pace of rate moves will depend on inflation
  • Fed’s Brainard vows to battle inflation, deflects Republican climate criticism
  • Exclusive-Fed’s Daly: March liftoff is ‘quite reasonable’
  • Wells Fargo expects four U.S. rate hikes this year, cuts growth forecast
  • ECB minions starting to think Eurozone inflation may not be transitory:
  • Wall St closes down, Fed speakers put rate hikes in focus
  • Friday, 14 January 2022
    • Signs and portents for the U.S. economy:
  • Fed minions see problems in U.S. economy, deny their policies caused inflation:
  • Fed’s Daly: COVID-19 caused inflation, but Fed has to fix it
  • Bailouts developing in China:
  • Central banks start turning off the cash taps
  • S.Korea’s central bank delivers back-to-back rate hikes amid inflation worries
  • ECB to do everything it takes to get inflation to 2%: Lagarde
  • Dow closes lower after disappointing bank results
  • Through 14 January 2022, the CME Group’s FedWatch Tool projects at least four quarter point rate hikes in 2022. Generally each hike would take place in the month ending each quarter, but possibly earlier than that in the third quarter.

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