In a move “Bond King” Jeffrey Gundlach said could be a prelude to the next round of quantitative easing, the New York Fed conducted a repurchase operation involving about $53 billion in debt instruments on Tuesday. The move to designed to unplug the financial system’s “plumbing” with an injection of cash was the first such move since the financial crisis a decade ago.
The purchases involved about $40.8 billion of Treasurys, $11.7 billion in mortgage-backed securities and $600 million in agency debt, according to a CNBC report. The move was prompted by the recent surge in interest rates that drove the overnight repo rate Monday to as high as 8.5%.
The New York Fed was expected to repeat the operation on Wednesday.
Last week we highlighted the rising level of auto loan delinquencies and the growing number of student loan borrowers who can’t make their payments. This week, we got some more bad news for lenders. Subprime credit card charge-offs remain at levels reminiscent of the Great Recession.
In the first quarter of this year, credit card charge-off rates at all but the largest 100 banks remained above 7% for the sixth quarter in a row. During the peak of the recession, the charge-off rate at these banks was above 7% for just four quarters, and not consecutively.
In his most recent podcast, Peter Schiff talked about recent Congressional hearings that featured Rep. Maxine Waters scolding bankers for creating the student debt crisis, ignoring the fact that the student loan program was nationalized a decade ago.
Peter described it as the political theater of the absurd.
Last week, there was some significant news out of India that could further boost the country’s gold market.
The Indian government will now allow banks to engage in gold bullion business – including holding, buying, selling, hedging and leveraging the yellow metal. Under current rules, banks can only serve as a consignment or channeling agent in the import of gold bullion for jeweler and exporters.
The loosening of regulations could increase a gold market that already ranks as the second-largest in the world behind only China.