Deeper Analysis

May in Figures

May 31, 2018

The dollar rose over 3% in May against the euro and sterling and by about 1% against the yuan and Canadian dollar but slipped fractionally relative to the yen, loonie and Australian dollar. Ten-year sovereign debt yields had risen in April but declined in May. Share prices rose in the U.K., Canada and United States, […] More

Italy’s Pre-Maastricht Days

May 17, 2018

A headline in today’s Financial Times reads “Italy’s populists pine for pre-euro times.” The recently established Five Star party and the right-wing League have been trying to form a government, and they have been openly considering desired measures to modify their relationship with other members of the European Monetary Union. The Maastricht Treaty signed in […] More

Non-Manufacturing U.S.-Minus-Euroland PMI Spread

May 5, 2018

The U.S. non-manufacturing purchasing index-minus-euro area services PMI was cut nearly in half to +2.1 in April, a three month low. The U.S. index dropped 2.0 points to 56.8, led by reductions of 1.5 and 3.0 points in sales/business activity and employment. Euroland’s services PMI fell just 0.2 points to 54.7. The Irish and French […] More

Convergence of U.S. and Euroland Manufacturing Operating Conditions Last Month

May 2, 2018

The rates of improvement in factory operating conditions slowed in April both in the United States and Euroland, but the U.S. deceleration was somewhat more pronounced. Hence, America enjoyed its smallest advantage relative to the euro area in three months. Declines of 3.8 points in the U.S. output sub-index and 3.1% in the U.S. jobs […] More

April in Figures

April 30, 2018

The dollar experienced its strongest month of 2018 in April, so naturally U.S. share prices under-performed equities in other countries. An upward grind in long-term interest rates continued and was considerably more pronounced in the United States and Canada than in Europe or Japan. Three-month interest rates rose slightly, except in Japan where such dipped […] More

U.S. Nonmanufacturing PMI Survey and Euroland Services PMI Survey Show Slower Rates of Expansion in March

April 5, 2018

The ISM-compiled U.S. non-manufacturing purchasing managers index slipped back 0.7 points to a 3-month low in March 0f 58.8, which was still very robust. Increases of 1.6 points in the employment sub-index and 0.5 points in prices mitigated declines of 5.3 points in orders and 2.2 points in sales. The IHS-compiled Euroland services PMI dropped […] More

Factory Sector Growth in the U.S. and Euroland Slowed Last Month

April 3, 2018

The ISM-compiled U.S. manufacturing purchasing managers index in March printed at 59.3, 1.5 points lower than in February but still 0.2 points above January’s reading. Indices for incoming orders, production, and employment respectively fell by 2.3, 1.0, and 2.4 points, but the score for inflation jumped 3.9 points to a lofty 78.1. The IHS-compiled manufacturing […] More

March and First Quarter 2018 in Figures

March 31, 2018

March was a difficult month for equities, largely because of Fed tightening, U.S.-inspired geopolitical uncertainty, and trade war fears. Nevertheless, U.S. share price losses in the first quarter of 2018 were generally smaller than declines recorded in other countries. Despite higher short-term interest rates during March especially in the United States and Great Britain, year-to-date […] More

Is U.S. Growth Really Strengthening?

March 28, 2018

Although the first derivative of the U.S. economy’s size has been very consistently positive, the answer to the above question is more debatable. In the nearly nine years since the Great Recession ended in mid-2009, real GDP rose in 35 of 36 quarters through end-2017, and the exception was a mere 0.9% annualized on-quarter dip […] More

Bear Markets and U.S. Recessions

March 24, 2018

Since a peak of 26,614 on January 26, the Dow Jones Industrials fell 11.6% in two months and has thus quickly moved 58% of the way to being a bonafide bear market, with a peak to trough drop of 20% or more. The causes of this downward correction remain active depressants, leaving little reason to […] More