Loan growth vs. a less accommodative Fed. Improving employment vs. no more rate cuts.
That's really how I see the world after listening to Ben Bernanke. The headlines are a little more negative than the actual story, but these quantifications on the fly of a complex man at a complex time can be reasonably excused.
Here's where I am coming out. I don't think Bernanke' saying anything really new. He is reacting to the obvious run in oil with obviously cautious comments. He sees the rise in employment. Combined, they seem to confirm that he doesn't need to do anything radical to CONTINIE to jumpstart the economy, but things are still way too fragile to need to brake the economy.
I think Bernanke's worried about runaway deficits. I think he's worried about no real attempt to cut spending. I think he worries that the rest of government is a bunch of jokers who won't take tough action.
And I think he is worried that we also could see tax INCREASES that might hurt the growth of the economy. He is worried that oil might curtail job growth. He's worried that housing still hasn't turned around.
Basically, what i am saying is he is worried about what he has been worried about. He doesn't want to do uberstimulus, but he doesn't want to walk away. He knows that the inflation away from gasoline isn't that great and may be tamer than we think. .
So, here's where I come out. The higher oil prices are going to act as a brake themselves to the economy so he can't add water to the water that's already being thrown on the fire from gasoline -- to mix metaphors.
So he will do nothing.
That is a win for the stock market and why it can't sell off. That, plus the rally in the transports because of a three-day decline in oil, just seems that the negative headlines about Bernanke with a much more neutral actual testimony is basically a NONEVENT with a small negative bias.
Not unexpected. Minor speed bump.
Random musings: JP Morgan being too cute about downgrading Domino's Pizza (DPZ). Too much good there. Apple (AAPL) remains a driver of this economy. The housing stocks and the banks act terrifically. Don't overlook how great Windows 8 can be. I have seen it. Given to what I have now, it's a huge improvement.
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