Did you hear about Janet Yellen's big boo-boo?
Apparently it cost our markets a trillion bucks.
That's how much investors lost yesterday.
And all because our brand new Federal Reserve boss made what one money manager called a classic rookie mistake.
She answered a question. Listen:
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
Reporter: Could you tells us how long of a gap we might expect before the rate hikes do begin?
Janet Yellen: So the language that we use in this statement is considerable period. So...I...you know this is the kind of term it's hard to define, but, you know, probably means something on the order of around six months or that type of thing.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
I'm telling you. No sooner had Yellen ended that sentence than traders started selling stocks.
Apparently they took it as a signal the Federal Reserve was ready to raise interest rates someday, which they kind of knew was coming someday.
But why did Janet have to be so damn honest and actually say it's coming someday?
Why couldn't she be vague like central bankers are supposed to be?
Why couldn't she be more obtuse like that Ben Bernanke guy or talk about challenging economic headwinds like that Alan Greenspan guy?
Why did Janet have to be so what's the word clear?
It's amazing to me how markets, which supposedly hate uncertainty.
Sell off when someone tries to provide them certainty, or as much certainty as she can.
That's a rookie mistake? Telling the truth?
Then I've got to hear what she said again because she seemed pretty measured and not-at-all rookie-nutty, to me.
If that's amateurish, then I'm Richard Simmons.
Because I didn't see Janet climbing over any chairs or belting out any tunes.
Or screaming, "the sun won't come out tomorrow...bet your bottom dollar the recovery's over..."
No, she did none of that.
But here's what worries me.
Janet just shuts up.
Goes from clear to cagey faster than me bolting from the prime rib line to the dessert line at a Ponderosa buffet.
Food for thought.
It's enough to make anyone demanding accountability from our officials vomit.
Because if the message we're sending our leaders is don't be clear.
Don't be surprised if they quit trying, and just quit leading.