It's not a big secret that the Federal Reserve is looking to start raising the short-term interest rate in what would be the first hike of the rate in more than 9 years. What's been in question isn't the if but the when. Many bond traders have been watching the economic data and shrugging off the Feds comments on a rate hike, thinking that the slower than expected growth will cause delays in the hike. However, this afternoon Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta President Dennis Lockhart said that he believes September is the appropriate time to raise the rate. Mortgage Backed Securities reacted to this news with a pretty major sell-off, ending the day down 50 basis points from yesterday's close. "It would take significant deterioration in the economic picture for me to be disinclined to move ahead (with a rate increase)," Lockhart said. Lockharts comments follow St. Louis Fed president James Bullard who on Friday echoed the same sentiments. At this point it looks "more likely than not" that the Fed will indeed hike the rate in September. Many analysts that are WAY more qualified than I am are split on whether or not it's the right thing to do.
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