Today Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen testifies in the Senate and is expected to elaborate on the most recent Fed statement and shed more light on the Fed views the current state of the economy. The most recent dovish FOMC threw cold water on a June liftoff for rate hikes. However, the meeting took place prior to the most recent Nonfarm Payrolls which was largely positive, so a June liftoff is not entirely off the table and we watch for additional signals during today’s testimony. The Case-Shiller's adjusted 20-city index gained +0.87% for the month of December following a +0.74% gain the month prior (consensus +0.6%). The better than expected Home Price data continues to signal a strengthening housing sector and a more stable recovery. Markit PMI edged up to 54.2 in January (final) vs. 54 at mid-month, and the preliminary February reading is expected to edge up to 54.5. The safe haven bid from Greece is beginning to fade after the European Commission said that it found Greece’s reforms proposal “sufficiently comprehensive” to continue working toward a conclusion of the country’s bailout program. Treasuries have declined -6.5 ticks and the curve has bear steepened with 2s10s up +1.7 bps.
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