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Are markets too exuberant?

Equity markets hit new highs during the Thanksgiving shortened week. Markets often move in anticipation of changes in policy. This post election market, however, appears to have instantaneously adjusted to what it perceives will be policy outcomes. Such outcomes, however, are by no means guaranteed; some outcomes may take several quarters, others years, if at all. This has been quite a stretch for markets where next month is considered “long-term.” There …Read More

Investors, prepare for slower growth

From an investor’s standpoint, this has surely been a summer of discontent.  All markets appear to be too high, there is no yield to be found, and there appears to be no place to hide, at least inside current investment standards as set forth by Wall Street.  While the conventional wisdom looks at cash as “trash” because it generates no return, in today’s world where there is more deflation than …Read More

Quarterly Economic Outlook: Q3/2016

The “Brexit” caused market swoon on Wall Street turned out to be a nasty 5.3% two day dive (S&P 500) that was all but reversed in the next 4 trading sessions.  The reason was clear early on – despite forecasts of immediate worldwide economic doom and gloom, the non-binding referendum was mostly a political statement about bureaucratic government, and the referendum split along demographic lines (older vs. younger, and rural …Read More

Economic Review – Q1/16

At quarter’s end, the equity market had recovered all that it had lost between 12/31 and 2/11, plus about 1%.  Apparently, this was the swiftest recovery in any quarter since 1933.  While we were fairly certain that the downdraft was just a much needed correction, like you, we don’t care too much for the uncertainty that such markets bring, especially when the business media was practically cheerleading for a recession.  …Read More

Barone: What’s eating Wall Street?

There was no Santa Claus rally in 2015. In the last few weeks, the market has done poorly, with the S&P 500 falling 1.75 percent in December and another 4.9 percent in the first four trading days of 2016, the worst start to a new year in the history of the index. The U.S. labor market is strong, and consumers seemed to have opened their wallets and purses for the …Read More

Economic predictions for 2016

As the year ends, it is customary to write a column that attempts to forecast the major economic trends of the new year. Looking back, five of my six predictions last December were spot on (only missed the continuing weakness in manufacturing). I hope the forecasts that follow do as well. Jobs, jobs, jobs Jobs and the consumer have been the bright spots in the U.S. economy and it appears …Read More