In musing about today’s Federal Reserve committee meeting, and the likely rate cut, I wandered over to Google Trends. How have things been looking at Google with respect to people searching for "fed rate cut", and where are people the most hungry for a cut?
Here is a live graph of Google search volume for the above phrase over the last twelve months, overlayed with the S&P 500 for the same period:
As you can see, there was little interest among searchers in the entire subject until July of this year, before which it didn’t generate enough searches to produce even a semi-decent graph. After that however, things really began spiking up, with a peak during the summer quant meltdown, and then further flurries this fall after cuts in September and late October. The current cut, however, seems to be seeing a slower ramp, suggesting, perhaps, that a big percentage of the population sees this one as a foregone conclusion. Does that make some other than a 25-point cut more likely? Maybe.
As a related aside, while the main cities for the above search are no surprise — Washington, New York, San Francisco, and Los Angeles — the Regions with the most search is a surprise. While you might expect the U.S. to the primary place with interest in "fed rate cut", it gets its search ass pretty much kicked by India, where apparently a rate cut is a much hotter subject.
Would would have thought?