Deeper Analysis

March and First Quarter 2021 in Figures

April 1, 2021

None of central banks below changed policy interest rates during the first quarter, but 10-year sovereign debt yield recorded sharp advances. Favorable U.S. long-term interest rate differentials became even more so during March. In spite of rising long-term bond yields, equities experienced gain last quarter including in March. The U.S. and Canadian dollars strengthened last […] More

U.S. and Euroland Manufacturing PMI Spread Shrunk 0.7 points to 2.2 Last Month

April 1, 2021

Manufacturing operating conditions improved last month in both Euroland and the United States. The IHS-compiled euro area purchasing managers index jumped 4.6 points to a record high of 62.5. Record highs above 60.0 were reached in Germany, Austria and the Netherlands, and the indices of Spain, Ireland, France, and Italy ranged upwards from 56.9 to […] More

Does Aggressive U.S. Pandemic Relief Risk an Unacceptably Big Future Inflation Problem?

March 29, 2021

Economists are divided on this question. Although more feel any inflationary fallout will be either temporary or manageable, some big names in the field like former Treasury Secretary Summers believe that the combination of prolonged very stimulative monetary policy, the CARES Act, subsequent government relief packages, and the Biden Administration’s fiscal plans to rebuild infrastructure […] More

And There It Is.. New Political Leadership Tempted to Depreciate the Dollar

March 4, 2021

An extensive article appearing on the front page of the New York Times business section two days ago and entitled To Revive Manufacturing, Weaken the Dollar? cites several economic policy advisors in the Biden administration being in favor of a carefully controlled slide in the dollar. One theme running through their thinking is the assertions […] More

U.S. Manufacturing Advantage Narrows Relative to Euroland

March 1, 2021

Whereas the Institute of Supply Management’s monthly purchasing managers index, a measure of operating conditions where values above 50 imply increasing degrees of improvement and vice versa, increased 2.1 points in February to robust 60.8, the IHS-compiled euro area PMI climbed 3.1 points to 57.9. Consequently, the difference between those two data series narrowed by […] More

February 2021 in Figures

February 27, 2021

Extreme financial market volatility on the final business day of February exerted a significant effect on monthly changes shown in the table below. The ten-year U.S. Treasury yield, for example, plunged from last week’s 12-month high of 1.61% to 1.40% at yesterday’s close, and the prices of oil and gold sank 3.2% and 2.6% on […] More

U.S. Pandemic Trends Since the November Election

February 23, 2021

February 22nd used to be a national holiday celebrating the birth of George Washington in 1732, but it was a solemn occasion in America this year, as the number of identified U.S. deaths from Covid-19 surpassed half a million people. That’s greater than the number of combined U.S. deaths from World War II, the Korean […] More

U.S. Economic Fundamentals and the Dollar

February 11, 2021

The dollar is currently much closer to its 52-week lows than its highs over that period against the euro, yen, Swiss franc, Chinese yuan and on a trade-weighted basis. Depreciation has been very orderly overall. The decline has transpired in fits and starts, and cumulative losses are moderate compared to many historical periods of slide. […] More

U.S. Manufacturing Advantage Versus Euroland Narrowed Last Month

February 1, 2021

The differential between the ISM’s U.S. manufacturing purchasing managers index and the IHS-compiled Euroland PMI narrowed 1.4 points in January. At +3.9 points, such was similar to November’s spread between the two data points. The U.S. index fell 1.8 points below December’s 27-month high of 60.5, as reductions in the demand and production sub-components offset […] More

January 2021 in Figures

January 29, 2021

Sovereign debt yields rose more rapidly in North America than in Europe or Japan during January.  Among central banks followed in this feature, no policy interest rates were changed this month. Equity selling in the final week of the month resulted in slight net losses for most markets in January, and newfound caution aided the […] More