Economy

Ready for Action? February 24, 2020

Posted by Steven Vannelli, CFA in Economy, Markets, News

Former Fed Governor and now professor at the University of Rochester, Narayana Kocherlakota penned the following short opinion piece in Bloomberg this morning: Fed Shouldn’t Wait to Cut Interest Rates: Narayana Kocherlakota By Narayana Kocherlakota The world economy is facing a material risk in the…

Read More

What’s Behind the Breakout in Gold? February 20, 2020

Posted by Bryce Coward, CFA in Economy, Markets

This week’s breakout in gold is an epic expression of our times in which potential economic problems are quickly followed by massive actual and expected responses by central banks and governments. The problem de jour (for both markets and the public) is of course the…

Read More

A JOLT to Job Openings & Asset Expectations February 11, 2020

Posted by Steven Vannelli, CFA in Economy

This morning the monthly job openings and labor turnover (JOLTS) report was released, and it came in significantly shy of expectations. While Bloomberg’s consensus estimate was for 6.925 million job openings, the actual number came in at 6.423. It is important to keep in mind…

Read More

A Recovery, But of the Square Root Variety February 06, 2020

Posted by Bryce Coward, CFA in Economy

Regular readers of this blog and of our other commentary know that we have been been looking for some kind of cyclical rebound in economic activity starting in the first quarter of 2020. By many indications, we are getting just that, and right on time….

Read More

Why Coronavirus is Scary for Financial Markets January 31, 2020

Posted by Bryce Coward, CFA in Economy, Markets

As we write, US stocks are down about 1.6% on the day, foreign developed market stocks are down 1.8%, and emerging market stocks are down about 2.4%. This type of corrective action did not really come as a surprise to us. Indeed just two weeks…

Read More

Mid-Quarter Update: Spotlight on US Corporate Profits December 04, 2019

Posted by Steven Vannelli, CFA in Economy

US corporate profits are down from the 2014 peak. In this mid-quarter special report, we dive deep into corporate profits, taxes, profit margins and the increasing government debt levels that have propelled stock and bond prices higher, in our view, leading to rising equity and government…

Read More

Economic Growth Has Not Hit Bottom Yet November 21, 2019

Posted by Bryce Coward, CFA in Economy, Markets

Even as left tail risks to US and global economic growth seem to have been mitigated over recent weeks (more accommodate financial conditions, rising of some PMI data, worst case trade outcome seemingly a lower probability now), incoming data continue to suggest the nadir of…

Read More

4Q Growth Expectations Crashing: A Tailwind for Bonds November 15, 2019

Posted by Steven Vannelli, CFA in Economy

Today’s US economic data releases have sent growth expectations plunging for fourth quarter GDP. First, retail sales ex-autos and gasoline rose only .1% in October, well below the .3% expectation. Second, industrial production fell twice as much as expected in October, dropping -.8% compared to…

Read More

Not So Fast on the Cyclical Chinese Recovery November 14, 2019

Posted by Bryce Coward, CFA in Economy, Markets

This morning investors were unfortunately treated to a rather disappointing package of October Chinese economic data. Three of the most important hard data series were reported: fixed asset investment, industrial production and retail sales. Each was lower than the previous month and missed expectations, suggesting…

Read More

Not QE? October 18, 2019

Posted by Bryce Coward, CFA in Economy, Markets

Last week the Federal Reserve announced the re-commencement of large scale asset purchases in order to alleviate funding pressures that had been bubbling for several months. Much effort has been made by Fed Chairman Powell and other missionaries to explain why this round of asset…

Read More

Hard Data Gets Put to the Test October 03, 2019

Posted by Bryce Coward, CFA in Economy

United States and indeed global economic data have been weak – at least that is the unabated message from the PMI data that were released this week on both manufacturing and services. At this stage everyone knows the survey data, or “soft” data, are weak….

Read More

Confirmation of the Deterioration in Consumer Confidence September 25, 2019

Posted by Steven Vannelli, CFA in Economy

In our mid-quarter update, we highlighted the plunge in the University of Michigan’s consumer confidence indicator, suggesting that “good feelings” among consumers were starting to fade. Often surveys offer a leading glimpse into economic activity. A more confident consumer is more likely to make those…

Read More