Best of the Week
Most Popular
1. Crude Oil and Water: How Climate Change is Threatening our Two Most Precious Commodities - Richard_Mills
2.The Potential $54 Trillion Cost Of The Fed's Planned Interest Rate Increases - Dan_Amerman
3.Best Cash ISA Savings for Rising UK Interest Rates and High Inflation - March 2018 - Nadeem_Walayat
4.Fed Interest Hikes, US Dollar, and Gold - Zeal_LLC
5.What Happens Next after February’s Stock Market Selloff - Troy_Bombardia
6.The 'Beast from the East' UK Extreme Snow Weather - Sheffield Day 2 - N_Walayat
7.Currencies Will Be ‘Flushed Down the Toilet’ Triggering a ‘Mad Rush into Gold’ - MoneyMetals
8.Significant Decline In Stocks On The Cards! -Enda_Glynn
9.Land Rover Discovery Sport Extreme Driving "Beast from the East" Snow Weather Test - N_Walayat
10.SILVER Large Specualtors Net Short Position 15 Year Anniversary - Clive_Maund
Last 7 days
Will Gold Price Breakout? 3 Things to Watch… - 24th Mar 18
Gold Junior Mining Stocks GDXJ Fundamentals - 23rd Mar 18
Global Trade War Fears See Precious Metals Gain And Stocks Fall - 23rd Mar 18
Stocks Recovering from a "deep dive" Overnight - 23rd Mar 18
Blaming the Fed for Weaker Greenback US Dollar - 23rd Mar 18
Watch This Group Signal Stock Market Trend Changes - 22nd Mar 18
Stocks are Gapping Beneath the Trendline Support - 22nd Mar 18
Fed Action Casts Shadow on Bullish Case for Stocks - 22nd Mar 18
A Strong Economy and Weak Stock Market is Bullish for Stocks - 22nd Mar 18
Fed Raises US Interest Rates 25bp – Where Are We In The Stock Market Cycle? - 22nd Mar 18
Why Spotify Will Likely Surge During Its IPO - 22nd Mar 18
SY Police Arrest Woman for Blowing Trumpet at Sheffield Tree Felling Protest - 22nd Mar 18
Facebook: The Anti-Social Network Covert Data Gathering - 21st Mar 18
Additional Signs for Gold and Silver Amid Increasing FOMC Tension - 21st Mar 18
Credit Concerns In U.S. Growing As LIBOR OIS Surges to 2009 High - 21st Mar 18
Stock Markets Are Flat-to-lower Before the FOMC - 21st Mar 18
Will Powell’s Actions Pop Stock Market Perfection - 21st Mar 18
Economic Moral Hazards of the International Criminal Court - and Philippines Withdrawal - 21st Mar 18
Larry Kudlow vs. Vladimir Putin on Gold - 21st Mar 18
Trump Builds Economy and War Machine - 21st Mar 18
This Stock Market "Illusion" Can Destroy Once-Vibrant Portfolios - 21st Mar 18
Gold Short-term Pull Back in Progress - 20th Mar 18
Stocks Appear to be Under Pressure - 20th Mar 18
Time To Eliminate Your Wall Street Tax? - 20th Mar 18
The Beast from the East Snow, UK Roads Driving Car Accidents - 20th Mar 18
Can Bitcoin Price Rally Continue After Paypal Fake FUD Attack? - 19th Mar 18
2018 Reversal Dates for Gold, Silver and Gold Stocks - 19th Mar 18
This Tech Breakthrough Could Save The Electric Car Market - 19th Mar 18
Stocks Set to Open Lower, Should You Buy? - 19th Mar 18
The Wealth Machine That Rising Interest Rates Create Conflict With The National Debt - 19th Mar 18
Affiliate Marketing Tips and Network Recommendations - 19th Mar 18
Do Stocks Bull Market Tops Need Breadth Divergences? - 19th Mar 18
Doritos Instant £500 Win! Why Super Market Shelves are Empty - 19th Mar 18
Bonds, Inflation & the Market Amigos - 19th Mar 18
US Housing Real Estate Market and Banking Pressures Are Building - 19th Mar 18
Stock Market Bulls Last Stand? - 18th Mar 18
Putin Flip-Flops Like A Drunken Whore On Bitcoin Cryptocurrency Legalization - 18th Mar 18
How to Legally Manipulate Interest Rates - 18th Mar 18
Return of Stock Market Volatility Amidst Political Chaos and Uncertain Economy - 18th Mar 18
Bitcoin Price Trend Forecast, Paypal FUD Fake Cryptocurrency Warning - 17th Mar 18
Strong Earnings Growth is Bullish for Stocks - 17th Mar 18
The War on the Post Office - 17th Mar 18
GDX Gold Mining Stocks Fundamentals - 16th Mar 18
Nationalism, Not the Russians, got Trump Elected - 16th Mar 18
Has Bitcoin Bought It? - 16th Mar 18
Crude Oil Price – Who Wants the Triangle? - 16th Mar 18
PayPal Cease Trading Crypto Currency Bitcoin Warning Email Sophisticated Fake Scam? - 16th Mar 18
EUR/USD – Something Old, Something New and… Something Blue - 16th Mar 18

Market Oracle FREE Newsletter

Urgent Stock Market Message

US Interest Rate Tsunami Waves Spotted Just Offshore

Interest-Rates / US Interest Rates Mar 13, 2018 - 03:26 AM GMT

By: Michael_Pento


We should all be familiar with the aphorism, “as real estate goes so goes the economy.” Anyone ignoring that economic axiom was completely blindsided by the Great Recession of 2008. Well, the collapse of the Everything Bubble most certainly includes the real estate market…and this time around will definitely not be different. 

The plain and simple fact is that home ownership is getting further out of reach for the average consumer as mortgage rates rise. This is especially true for the first-time home buyer. The 30-year fixed rate mortgage is now the highest level since January 2014, 4.64%

With mortgage rates now more than half a percentage higher than at the start of the year, homebuyers are already getting priced out of an overvalued real estate market. This means that just by waiting a couple of months to buy a home, someone buying the typical U.S. home would be paying an extra $564 per year on their mortgage. Over the lifespan of a 30-year mortgage, that adds up to nearly $17,000, according to Zillow.

The rise in mortgage rates has caused purchase applications to fall to a level that is now just 1% above the year ago period. The current trajectory clearly shows the YOY change should soon be negative; and as housing goes into recession the economy is sure to follow. In fact, Year-on-year, Existing Home Sales were down 4.8%, the largest decline since August 2014. Prices also dropped considerably in January; the median selling price fell by 2.4%.

Sales of New U.S. homes fell in January for the second straight month. The Commerce Department says sales came in at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 593,000 units, which was the lowest since August and down 7.8%t from a revised 643,000 in December.

And the Pending Home Sales Index in January fell 4.7%, to 104.6. This was the lowest level for that Index in nearly 3.5 years. According to Bloomberg, this points to a third straight decline for final sales of existing homes, which already fell very sharply in both January and December.

You see, you have to look at both sides of the equation: Tax cuts are simulative to growth, but rising debt service costs are a depressant, especially when imposed upon the record $49 trillion worth of total U.S. non-financial debt, which is up an incredible 47.5% in the last ten years. Earnings Per Share on the S&P 500 are getting a huge one-time boost from lower corporate rates, but debt service payments are rising sharply and will offset much of those gains.

Every one percent increase on the average interest payment on the National Debt equates to and additional $200 billion of debt service payments. And individual households aren’t doing much better managing their debt than corporations and government. in fact,  total household debt rose to an all-time high of $13.15 trillion at year-end 2017--an increase of $193 billion from the previous quarter, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. According to Equifax, In December, mortgage debt balances rose by $139 billion. And according WalletHub,  U.S. consumers racked up $92.2 billion in credit card debt during 2017, pushing outstanding balances past $1 trillion for the first time ever. The $67.6 billion in credit card debt that was added in Q4 2017 is the highest quarterly accumulation in 30 years--68% higher than the post-Great Recession average.

Total outstanding non-financial U.S. corporate debt has risen by an unbelievable  $2.5 trillion (40%) since its 2008 peak. This means, according to former OMB Director David Stockman, that even if the 10-year Note rises to only 3.75%, the average after-tax interest expense for the S&P 500 companies will rise from $16 per share (2016 actual), to $36 per share. And would erase nearly all of the corporate tax rate deduction.

The fact is, It's hard to make the argument that any group has been deleveraging. What this all means is that the debt-disabled economy is more susceptible to rising rates than ever before. In other words, the bursting of the greatest economic distortion in history—the worldwide bond bubble—is now slamming into the most massive accummulation of global debt ever recorded. To be specific, debt has surged to the unprecedented level of 330% of global GDP.

Indeed, when looking at the Real Estate rollover, falling Durable Goods orders and spiking trade deficits, it’s hard to make a cogent argument that GDP growth has shifted into a higher gear. And now, the first salvos of an international trade war have been fired off. What started as tariffs on just solar panels and washing machines has now morphed into a tax on everything made of aluminum and steel. Tariffs are simply taxes on foreign made goods that eventually get passed onto American consumer in the form of higher prices; and will serve to further offset the cuts on corporate and individual tax rates.

Wall Street has become downright giddy over the tax reform package, but at the same time completely overlooking the coming drag on GDP from spiking debt service costs and trade wars; which will further pressure Treasury yields higher as China recycles less of its trade surplus into dollars.

Once the tax cut and repatriation-induced buy-back buzz wears off, the stock market will be in serious trouble. That should occur sometime this fall. Unfortunately for the Wall Street perma-bulls, the timing for the end of debt-fueled repurchases couldn’t be worse. Because come October, the Fed will be selling $50 billion worth of bonds per month and will have raised the Funds Rate three more times. In addition, deficits will have spiked to well over $1 trillion per year. Rapidly rising interest rates should ensure economic growth and EPS comparisons become downright awful just as the economy rolls over from crushing debt service costs.

Indeed, the stock market will soon lose its last major leg of support---debt-fueled share buybacks. According to Artemis’s calculations, share buybacks have accounted for +40% of the total EPS growth since 2009, and an astounding +72% of the earnings growth since 2012. Thanks to the tax cuts and repatriation legislation, buybacks are already on a record pace for 2018 — $171 billion worth have been announced so far this year, which is more than double the amount announced this time last year. Rising corporate debt levels and higher interest rates are a catalyst for slowing down the $500-$800 billion in annual share buybacks that have artificially supporting EPS and markets. But as already noted, these will also become a causality of the bond market’s demise.

You still have time to put into place an investment strategy that at least attempts to preserve and profit from the coming yield-shock-induced recession--and the subsequent stock market and economic collapse that is sure to follow. But time is quickly running out.

Michael Pento produces the weekly podcast “The Mid-week Reality Check”, is the President and Founder of Pento Portfolio Strategies and Author of the book “The Coming Bond Market Collapse.”


Michael Pento

Pento Portfolio Strategies

Twitter@ michaelpento1
(O) 732-203-1333
(M) 732- 213-1295

Michael Pento is the President and Founder of Pento Portfolio Strategies (PPS). PPS is a Registered Investment Advisory Firm that provides money management services and research for individual and institutional clients.

Michael is a well-established specialist in markets and economics and a regular guest on CNBC, CNN, Bloomberg, FOX Business News and other international media outlets. His market analysis can also be read in most major financial publications, including the Wall Street Journal. He also acts as a Financial Columnist for Forbes, Contributor to and is a blogger at the Huffington Post.
Prior to starting PPS, Michael served as a senior economist and vice president of the managed products division of Euro Pacific Capital. There, he also led an external sales division that marketed their managed products to outside broker-dealers and registered investment advisors. 
Additionally, Michael has worked at an investment advisory firm where he helped create ETFs and UITs that were sold throughout Wall Street.  Earlier in his career he spent two years on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.  He has carried series 7, 63, 65, 55 and Life and Health Insurance www.earthoflight.caLicenses. Michael Pento graduated from Rowan University in 1991.

© 2018 Copyright Michael Pento - All Rights Reserved
Disclaimer: The above is a matter of opinion provided for general information purposes only and is not intended as investment advice. Information and analysis above are derived from sources and utilising methods believed to be reliable, but we cannot accept responsibility for any losses you may incur as a result of this analysis. Individuals should consult with their personal financial advisors.

Michael Pento Archive

© 2005-2018 - The Market Oracle is a FREE Daily Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting online publication.

Post Comment

Only logged in users are allowed to post comments. Register/ Log in

6 Critical Money Making Rules