Wednesday, December 10, 2008

The Effect of Zero Interest Rate

By manipulating the short-term bond rate and hence rise the bond price, the actual FED funds rate is close to zero. Now the effect has been shown, coupling with so-called good new s like stimuli and bailout plans. However, the mortgage rate and finance rate, if compare to the actual rate, are still at high risk premium. Despite the decrease on price of longer term bond, bond market has not really collapsed. Besides, TED spread also shows that the deflation expectation within 5 year is still valid. Considering the rather small volume of DJI, HSI, and even Shanghai indexes, the HSI currently is subject to a rebound due to an influx of money, possibly from China and from other overseas money retreated from China market.

With the short-term influx and the mid-term dim expectation, the rebound may not stand long. Events like prolonged deflation, jobs cut, other firms collapses, or at least unfavorable 2008Q4, 2009Q1, or 2009Q2 results can trigger the end of rebound. During this period, either hold cash until the period is clearer or speculate on the ups and downs of the equity market. Gold worths attention when demand on gold will rise due to huge supplies and high velocity of USD in the market, through not only government pumping but also welfare policies (if any).

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