Now that Alan Greenspan and his pals have retreated from last week's FOMC meeting and returned to their Feddistricts, big offices and fancy collections of jazz albums, the speculation can begin anew about what they'll do the next time around. (Mark those calendars for May 16!)

Last Tuesday, the Fed voted to raise the fed funds rate to 6% from 5.75% and the discount rate to 5.50% from 5.25%. What did stocks do? Well, the


moved up 227 points and the


soared by 100 points. That doesn't seem like what Big Al had in mind.

In all the business school books, an interest-rate hike was supposed to scare investors and depress stock prices.

So what's a loving and nurturing Fed to do? And, more importantly, what


it do?

Let us know.

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What will the Fed do?

Nothing. Just sit around musing about what nutty things




will say on


this Friday.

Another 25-basis-point hike. It hasn't worked so far, but what the heck.

A Nifty 50 -- This time, we mean it.

100 basis points or more -- "That's how they used to do it in the old days, they'd raise rates and then we'd have to all walk 20 miles home. In the snow. With no shoes. Or feet."