Broker Check

Watch the Yield Curve, Not Just Headline Inflation Statistics

On November 15, 2021

Stocks fell modestly last week, but despite it being the most cited reason, “inflation” was not why stocks dropped. Yes, the financial media was 100% focused on inflation (as were politicians in Washington), but it was actually rising Treasury yields and tech weakness that caused last week’s losses.

To see that, all we have to do is look at trading on Tuesday, where a sharp drop in TSLA weighed on tech and that pulled the SPY lower, and Wednesday it was the poor Treasury auction results at 1:00 p.m. that caused the drop in tech stocks as yields rallied—not the CPI report that was released four and a half hours earlier.

Now, I’m not trying to downplay inflation’s importance in this market—but I am trying to drive home the point it’s bond yields that will impact stock prices in the near term, not inflation (inflation is one part of why bond yields move, not the only part). More broadly, the big question markets are asking right now is whether surging inflation will cause a Fed policy mistake.



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