November 21, 2022
Inflection Point- Where Are Rates Going?
In mid-November 2022, St. Louis Fed President James Bullard estimated that the target for the federal funds rate is between 5% and 7% and that is what’s needed to sufficiently slow economic growth and produce a meaningful decline in inflation. Since this prognostication, two different cases are emerging for where interest rates are going. One says […]
September 27, 2022
The Strong US Dollar: A Double Edged Sword
There is a common theme running through many conversations of parents of college aged “young adults”: I want to live like them! So many are living abroad, enjoying what the world has to offer, studying, learning – exploring the world. I remember going to Europe in college – and spending French Francs at a café […]
August 31, 2022
Straight Talk from Jackson Hole
I have been to Jackson Hole over the years, some of the time in summer and some in winter. But I have yet to attend the annual Jackson Hole Economic Symposium, hosted by the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City. One day. Nevertheless, I have followed much of what is said there every year because […]
July 26, 2022
Are we in a recession and does it matter?
One of the big debates on Wall Street going right now is whether the US economy, based on Q2 gross domestic product (GDP) data, will show a recession. However, as investors, it may be more important to focus on other indicators like consumer sentiment. On the one hand, most economists believe that two consecutive quarters […]
June 29, 2022
The R Word
As of late June 2022, we learned that the Federal Reserve is “strongly committed” to reducing inflation. According to Fed Chairman Jerome Powell the U.S. economy is strong enough to handle the planned upcoming interest rate hikes. “The American economy is very strong and well-positioned to handle tighter monetary policy” Powell said at a recent […]
May 16, 2022
Threading the Needle
What is driving much of the equity volatility in the first half of 2022? Market participants are trying to figure out if the US Federal Reserve can engineer a “soft landing” of its planned interest rate hiking cycle without throwing the economy into recession. There are some big name firms with wildly opposing views – […]
February 26, 2022
Implications Of The Russia/Ukraine Situation
Following a propaganda campaign positioning itself as a threatened victim, Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24th. The first round of financial sanctions levied by the West did little to de-escalate the situation. We understand that the most significant impact of the Russian invasion is to individual Ukrainians and our thoughts remain with them. Here we […]
February 25, 2022
Will The War In Ukraine Exacerbate The Decline of Globalization?
When I was in business school in the 1990’s, the buzzword of the day was “globalization”. To me, it made perfect sense. Why wouldn’t the world be interconnected and try to do commerce globally instead of each country trying to take on the world? And globalization took off. And then, in the 2010’s, there began […]
January 21, 2022
Could Oil Prices Hit $100/barrel (again)?
The price of oil has risen by more than 400% since it hit a low of $20/barrel in April of 2020. However, at the current price near $80/barrel, it is still well below its former peak of $140/barrel hit way back in June of 2008. Could oil prices get back over $100/barrel anytime soon? What […]
October 26, 2021
The “Great Resignation” – a permanent or passing event?
It seems like nearly every retail store has a “help wanted” sign on the door these days. US GDP growth and corporate earnings have rebounded since the pandemic, but availability of labor seems to be an issue. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the quit rate among US employees hit an all-time high […]
September 29, 2021
The Economic Impact of China’s New Political Ideology
Most investors have noticed that China’s stock market has been falling this year, especially Chinese offshore companies. Given that the US and many other developed countries are largely capitalist, it is difficult for many to understand why China’s government is intervening so heavily in its industries and financial markets. For example, Beijing essentially eliminated the country’s […]
August 2, 2021
Is inflation transitory or here for a sustained period?
The answer is likely that some of the inflation we are experiencing will stay for a sustained period, but it is quite possible that much of the recent spike will dissipate as supply chains reopen and comparisons to the very low levels during the pandemic roll off. Some of the headlines have been shocking, like “U.S. […]