President Barack Obama plans to announce Wednesday he is nominating Federal Reserve Vice Chairwoman Janet Yellen to become the central bank’s new leader. The nomination would conclude a long and unusually public debate about Mr. Obama’s choice, a conversation that started last June when he said that Chairman Ben Bernanke wouldn’t be staying in the post after his term ends in January.
Investors Caught In Middle Of Political Posturing – Again
The markets are beginning to realize that the major political parties learned very little during the 2011 debt downgrade talks. Our leaders seem to be headed down the same road again. The early reaction from the street was that the Yellen announcement’s timing is meant to stem the stock market’s recent decline.
We Can’t Talk Until You Vote
President Obama is holding firm on his stance that negotiations can take place, but not until a clean resolution is passed to raise the debt ceiling. From The Wall Street Journal:
“I am happy to talk with [House Speaker John Boehner] and other Republicans about anything,” Mr. Obama said he told Mr. Boehner in a phone conversation earlier Tuesday. “But I also told him that having such a conversation, talks, negotiations, shouldn’t require hanging the threats of an economic shutdown or economic chaos over the heads of the American people.”
We Can’t Vote Until We Talk
Speaker of the House John Boehner says negotiations must take place before the debt ceiling resolution is passed. From Reuters:
House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner, a Republican, renewed his call for deficit-reduction talks with President Barack Obama, saying he was not “drawing any lines in the sand”. “It’s time for us to sit down and have a conversation,” Boehner told reporters after meeting with Republican House members. “There are no boundaries here. There’s nothing on the table, there is nothing off the table.” Republicans emerged from the House meeting saying they would insist that deficit-reduction talks with Obama as a condition for raising the federal debt limit.
Leveraged Credit Markets Getting Nervous
The credit markets are begging to crack as negotiations, or the lack thereof, continue inside the beltway. The risk-on vs. risk-off ratio below tracks the demand for higher yielding bonds (NYSEARCA:JNK) relative to more conservative Treasury bonds (NYSEARCA:TLT).