Hedge Fund CIO: "Why The Hell Did The Fed Hike This Week?"

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The start of another week is upon us, which means it is time for another excerpt from the latest letter to clients by One River Asset Management CIO Eric Peters, who today writes about last week’s Fed decision, the upcoming balance sheet unwind, the lack of inflation, and “disruptive” companies which may themselves soon be disrupted.

We will have more from today’s letter shortly, but for now here is Peters on a topic still fresh on everyone’s minds: the Fed’s latest rate hike decision, and what it really means:

You make poor people richer, or rich people poorer,” bellowed Biggie Too, global chief strategist for one of those Too-Big to Fail affairs.

 

“Ain’t no other way to reduce inequality.” The Fed had just fired off another .25 caliber shot – Pop! “Brexit, Trump, Corbyn,” barked Biggie. “They all promised to make the poor richer.” But in no time, they’re cutting healthcare for the most vulnerable. Wage growth remains subdued. Stocks are at all-time highs. And poor people don’t own any.

 

“So maybe those central bankers finally think it’s time to make the rich poorer.” 

 

Why the hell did the Fed hike this week?” asked Biggie Too. “GDP is too strong?” he asked, laughing, shifting into a slow groove. “CPI is running away? Wages are taking off? ISM is on a tear? Business confidence has raced through the roof?” he asked, liking the sound of his own voice. “Why’d they do it?” asked Biggie. I shook my head.

 

“It’s all about the green,” he said, pulling out a knot, throwing it in the air, crisp Benjamins raining down. “There’s no red on the screens anywhere. All they ever see is green. Day after day. It’s time to subdue Wall Street.”

 

“Can they do it? Should they?” asked Biggie Too. “Should the Fed hike when they see no inflation?” he asked. And of course there’s no right answer, only different choices, consequences.

 

“It’s fine when you shift from maximum liquidity and minimal growth to minimal liquidity and maximum growth,” mused Biggie, in baritone. That’s typically the end of the cycle. Certain assets fall, others rise, the overall ascent slows.

 

“But if we’re headed toward minimal growth and minimal liquidity, that ain’t gonna be so pretty,” rapped Biggie, a wry golden smile.

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