Rate cuts, history, and panic

Sticking to hard data, this morning’s Fed Funds rate cut of 75 basis points was the deepest on record. Who’s record? The Feds own record, dating back to 1971.

Note that there are several occasions where the Fed raised rates (either the discount or fed funds) by 3/4 of one percent: the summer of ’73, September of 1980, and November of ’94. But they never lowered it so significantly in one kick.

The Dow recovered roughly 2/3rds of its opening losses, ending the day down 128.11. I can’t remember such a harsh reaction on the part of equities to a rate CUT. It was hardly graceful.

djia-012208