Phil Grossfield's Blog


The Best Day Skagway

dogsledding4The Best Day – Skagway   I saw spawning salmon and went dog-sledding in a stunning environment. In a New York accent, “forget about it.”  The coolest thing was the salmon, but I’ll talk about that tomorrow. When we got off the ship a bus drove us up a mountain and dropped us off at a river which we had to cross.

On the other side we got into a WWII German Unimog, a rough terrain vehicle with a machine gun portal that was strong enough to take us up the mountain to the dogs. dogsledding2Then we got into a go-cart vehicle with 14 or so dogs barking frantically…excitedly…they were ready and wanting to run! The exhilaration was palpable…my kids were beaming, as was I. And off we went, and it’s fast! Although I didn’t record our own journey, I took a short video of the trainers bringing in some dogs to give you an idea of what it was like. After that we got to hold puppies and heard a story from one of the dog sledding racers. All in all it was a highlight of our trip, one of the memories that will never escape us.

By the way, my wife, The Travel Mama, went dog sledding for real last year, you know, like in the snow through the mountains. She wrote a captivating and exhilarating post about it…check it out:  Dog-Sledding Is Not for Wimps.

My Schedule:  I have a full day…a meeting at 11:30 over lunch, a conference call at 1:30p and an early evening meeting at 4:00p.

My Market Watch:   The Fed Met. Bonds Were Up, Now Down – Pricing Worse For Fixed and the Same for ARMs.  The Fannie Mae bond is trading flat for the day…par. But because bonds started out up and lost ground, Interbank already issued a mid-day rate change for the worse.

My prediction that pricing would improve yesterday morning proved correct, but throughout the day the bonds sold off and price worsenings were issued. We just can’t seem to keep bonds trading positive…they keep dropping and dropping despite hopeful mini-rallies. The reason bonds started on an upswing yesterday was because of ambiguous information from the Fed meeting…ambiguity was our friend since there was no significant discussion regarding QE tapering. Here was my analysis from Monday:  my explanation of QE and my analysis on the Fed Meeting.

My Disclaimer

Perspective.  30-Year Fixed Average Rates:  Past 40 years:  8.15%    Past 30 years:  7.45%    Past 20 years:  6.52%    Past 10 years:  5.72%

A word on locks.  Even though turn-times are fast, I advise longer term locks or at least a pricing cushion to account for possible lock extensions. Flexibility in getting additional days is not as elastic. I advise 45 day Locks. If you must lock 30 days then be sure to build in additional rebate in case you need to pay for an extension.  This is good smart business.


One response to “The Best Day Skagway

  1. Bernie August 22, 2013 at 6:06 pm

    That is so cool. The puppies are adorable…Wow what athletic dogs….

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