By Alan Grayson| June 2, 2012
What does it say about our journalism and media when the longest ferris wheel ride is more newsworthy than the lowest interest rates in history?
Yesterday, the 10-year Treasury note hit its lowest interest rate in history. For the third day in a row.
I didn’t hear that reported. Did you?Treasury notes started trading in substantial amounts during World War I, almost 100 years ago. Until Wednesday of this week, the lowest interest rate in history on 10-year notes was 1.672%. That was in February 1946, twelve years before I was born. (That rate re-appeared, for a few brief moments, last September.)
On Tuesday, the rate for 10-year notes closed at 1.73%. On Wednesday, the rate dropped past the all-time low, and kept going, finishing at 1.62%. Thursday set a new all-time low, finishing at 1.58%. On Friday, the rate for 10-year notes finished at 1.47%.
That’s a 15% drop. In three days.
The yield on 10-year Treasury notes actually plunged all the way down to 1.44% during Friday trading. That’s the new all-time low. Until Monday, at least.
Here are some questions that come to mind:
Why is this happening?
Is this good news or bad news? (Hint to Obama Administration: you can take credit for it.)
Will the trend continue?
What does it mean for the middle class? For mortgages and car loans? For corporate profits? For fiscal policy?
Who gains and who loses?
Unfortunately, there are no answers to any of these questions today, because reaching a 100-year low in interest rates is not considered news.
Here are the headlines yesterday from the Associated Press:
- The unemployment rate rose from 8.1% to 8.2%.
- The UN Human Rights Council voted to condemn Syria.
- There was a large fire in New Mexico (video!).
- A black bear wondered into a schoolyard (more video!).
Here are the headlines yesterday from ABC News:
- A teacher slapped a student.
- A roommate issued a humorous apology for taking someone else’s milk from the fridge.
- “Why Idiot Humans Are Best Cyber Weapon”
- A new record was set for world’s longest Ferris Wheel ride.
- A mother choked a bully.
I hate to be a scold. I really do. But important things are happening. Can someone in the media, or among our so-called leaders, please pay some attention? Please?
You can’t lead people anywhere if your eyes are closed.
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