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February 2015

Weather or not, economy still improving

Originally published in the Reno Gazette Journal’s website, http://www.rgj.com/story/money/business/2015/02/20/weather-economy-still-improving/23742909/ In my last column, I talked about the negative media spin on January’s data, perhaps contributing to January’s equity market decline. In February, despite the fact that the equity markets have moved to new records, negative spin continues. I continue to see hand wringing over some month over month declines in individual pieces of data without any further analysis. One of …Read More

What is up with the Yield Curve?

Originally published on Tahoe Daily Tribune’s website http://www.tahoedailytribune.com/news/opinion/15174122-113/tahoe-truckee-market-beat-what-is-up-with-the-yield-curve The Yield Curve walks into a bar. The bartender says, “Hey, you’re really getting into shape!” The Yield Curve replies, “Yep. I believe the Expectations Hypothesis is working on my slope!” The bartender inquires, “Are you sure?” To which the yield curve responds, “I’m positive.” I can’t take credit for that joke; it was written by BYU economics professor Richard W. Evans. …Read More

Financial media fixated on threat of deflation

Originally published on Reno Gazette Journal’s website, http://www.rgj.com/story/money/business/2015/02/06/financial-media-fixated-threat-deflation/23010819/ As a financial markets economist, my job is to survey the economic landscape and identify trends and issues that might have a significant impact on economic activity (and then to worry about what those trends and issues mean for client portfolios). Normally, over the intermediate time horizon, such economic trends manifest themselves in financial asset prices. But that is not true in …Read More