Today is a big day for employment stats – the ‘official’ bureau of labor statistics employment report will be released in about an hour.
Yesterday ADP released their employment report–and this report which has generally been less respected than the government report showed job growth as relatively strong–certainly stronger than forecast (164,000 versus 130,000 forecast).
Today the forecast is for 170,000 jobs being created in December versus 199,000 the month before. The unemployment rate is forecast at 3.8% versus 3.7% previous.
The 10 year treasury yield cracked 4% yesterday and this morning is trading at 4.04% as doubts of March Fed Funds rate cuts are surfacing. Economic data of all sorts has shown the economy to be fairly solid – not extremely strong, but solid. There is no reason to think the 10 year yield is going above say 4.1% or 4.15%, but if it does I would expect income portfolios to take a fairly sound beating–temporary, but painful.
Today I am going to take a look at Brighthouse Financial (BHF) preferreds and baby bonds. The issues from this insurance/annuity company are trading with current yields in the 7.25% – 7.50% area–being investment grade that is a tasty yield. If my due diligence pans out a starter position of some sort may be initiated today or Monday. This would fit right in with my investment ‘plan’
Well let’s get the day rolling and see where the employment reports take us.