Say Uncle!


“The Fed is going wild. I mean, I don’t know what their problem is that they are raising interest rates and it’s ridiculous…the Fed is going loco and there’s no reason for them to do it. I’m not happy about it.”

Donald Trump, in a Fox News telephone interview on October 10, 2018

“He’s wrong…their record’s not as good as mine, and I’m sorry to be like that. I’m sorry to be like Bill Parcells: You are what your record says you are. And they’re 0-and-1, and they’ve got to start shaping up and stop being ideological…They’re wrong now, and they were wrong then.”

Jim Cramer, on CNBC on November 14, 2018

“Start with the Fed, which should rethink its December rate increase. No other major central bank is likely to raise its rates soon. The Fed needs to weigh whether it should expand the gulf between U.S. and foreign monetary policies at a fragile moment as global investors demand more dollars.”

“America is Not an Island”, by Wall Street Journal Editorial Board, November 15, 2018

Just a quick observation on some emerging common knowledge as equity and credit markets limp into Thanksgiving.

If you’re feeling the Wall Street story-telling apparatus whirring up a little bit here these last few weeks, you’re not imagining things. We are officially in full-on “Uncle” mode. Here is some data from the research we do on the narratives of central bank omnipotence. What you’re seeing are the percentages of news stories about the Fed, the Federal Reserve or other Central Bank terms, which ALSO refer to other topics. In this chart, we highlight the stories which refer to Inflation, Unemployment and the Stock Market.

Yes, that jump in the percentage of stories about the Fed that also mention the stock market in the first half of Q4 is real, and pretty broad-based across news, opinion, analysis and research pieces. Across outlets, too. This isn’t just CNBC reprinting and syndicating things that Cramer says on the air. To be clear, I’m not saying that I agree with either side of the should-they-or-shouldn’t-they argument. But I AM saying that the financial media’s missionaries haven’t been been this transparent and bold in their monetary policy campaigning in years. 


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That picture from A Christmas Story should be false advertising.

Happy Thanksgiving, Rusty!


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