Deeper Analysis

Tale of the Tape: DJIA Performance of Trump Vs Obama

May 13, 2019

With a plunge of more than 600 points so far today, the Dow Jones Industrials has fallen to its level at the start of the second week of January 2018, some 16 months ago. During the equivalent period of the Obama Presidency, the DJIA climbed 18%. Okay, the DOW is still 27.5% above its level […] More

U.S. Nonmanufacturing PMI Compared to Euroland Services PMI

May 6, 2019

In the United States in April, non-manufacturing activity grew somewhat more slowly than in March but more rapidly than the manufacturing sector was expanding. Sub-indices for orders, jobs and prices grew more slowly last month, but the growth of production quickened. April service sector activity in the euro area similarly contrasted favorably with the region’s […] More

U.S.-Minus-Euroland Advantage in Manufacturing Narrowed in April

May 2, 2019

The widening of the ISM U.S. minus euro area IHS purchasing purchasing manager manufacturing differential that had occurred in March was exactly reversed in April. The spread dropped from 7.8 points to 4.9 points, as the euro recorded its firmest monthly average against the dollar since December 2017. Manufacturing is more sensitive to movements in […] More

April in Figures

May 1, 2019

The first-quarter rebound in share prices continued in April at pretty much the same pace of climb but with British stocks lagging somewhat. Central bank interest rates were not changed during the month in the U.S., Euroland, Great Britain, Japan, or Switzerland. U.S. President Trump sustained his tweeting campaign, urging the Fed to cut rates […] More

A Strange and Unexpected U.S. GDP Report

April 26, 2019

U.S. real GDP grew 3.2% at a seasonally adjusted annualized rate (SAAR) last quarter, which is close to a percentage point higher than was predicted. Year-on-year growth in the first quarter was also 3.2%. The acceleration of quarter-on-quarter growth to 3.2% from 2.2% SAAR did not stem from the usual suspects. Real final private domestic […] More

Comment on Inflation

April 9, 2019

The current U.S. economic upswing is just three months short of setting a new record for longevity, and yet inflation remains stubbornly below the Federal Reserve’s target. Just as it proved frustratingly hard to lower inflation sustainably during the last third of the twentieth century, policymakers in the United States, Japan, and Europe have grappled […] More

U.S. Factory Sector Advantage Versus Euroland Widened Sharply in March

April 1, 2019

The 7.8-point spread in March between the U.S. ISM-compiled manufacturing purchasing managers index and the euro area IHS-compiled counterpart is the widest such has been in over six years and 4.9 index points greater than the width at the end of 2018. There is a caveat, however, and it is the a 0.6-point decline in […] More

March and First Quarter 2019 in Figures

March 30, 2019

The table below documents changes in key market variables during March and the first quarter of 2019. Sharply reduced sovereign debt yields in both time intervals amidst slowing global growth and lessening inflation were a driving force behind other markets as well. Equities benefited but not nearly as much in March when the U.S. yield […] More

Comment on Revised U.S. GDP

March 28, 2019

U.S. quarterly GDP growth in the final quarter of 2018 got revised downward by 0.4 percentage points to 2.2% annualized. Despite the positive spin from government officials, that’s below the average 2.7% per annum pace of the whole Trump presidency thus far. Moreover, personal consumption, which comprises about 70% of GDP, contributed disproportionately by accounting […] More

One Problem with the Fed Letting Its Interest Rate Crest at 2.5%

March 26, 2019

Share prices are rallying today in part on hopes that the Federal Reserve has reacted quickly to a deterioration in the outlook for global and U.S. growth. By doing so, maybe the inversion of the U.S. yield curve that recently occurred will be the exception that doesn’t herald a U.S. recession within 18 months. I […] More