Powell and Lagarde meme

Ultimately, the terminal rate is what's most important for markets. The big question right now is whether that's 2%, 3% or 4%.

Given that the answer to that question is many months away, the preoccupation of the market in the month ahead will be whether the March meeting is a 25 basis point rate hike or 50 bps on March 16.

Right now, the market is pricing in a nearly 50% chance of 50 bps. That's probably a tad high but if jobs and inflation numbers keep coming in strong, it will move higher still.

So the Fed will have to make a decision: 25 or 50.

But before that they will have to make a decision on whether to leave markets guessing of offer some guidance. It's been years since the market has gone into decision day without a clear idea of what's coming from the Fed. The operating model has emphasized guidance and stability, with the Fed loath to a volatility.

The deadline for that is March 4, as the FOMC blackout starts at midnight. That's just after the February non-farm payrolls report and 22 days away.

From now until then, there will now be an extraordinary focus on Fed commentary. Next week we get the FOMC minutes, Bullard, Mester, Evans and Williams. I suspect Fed members will want to take as much time as possible to mull over their decision. That will make the first few days of March as the spot to watch.