The Fed puts rates on ice

After raising interest rates in December for the first time since the financial crisis and Great Recession, the Federal Reserve has gone into a January freeze. The central bank on Wednesday announced no change in interest rates, meaning the target for the Fed’s benchmark federal funds rate will remain between 0.25% and 0.50%, the range […]

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 […]

The Fed — deer in the headlights?

When they walked into the meeting on Wednesday, Sept. 16, it is likely that the FOMC members (Federal Open Market Committee, the rate-setting committee of the Fed) did not know the interest rate decision they would make on Thursday. We had Jeff Lacker (Richmond Fed), Dennis Lockhart (Atlanta Fed), and John C. Williams (SF Fed) […]

The U.S. is Losing the Currency War

Over the past year, the U.S. dollar has appreciated more than 18%, and in the week of August 10th, China surprised the markets by allowing its currency to depreciate nearly 3% against the dollar, thoroughly roiling the equity markets. The Peoples Bank of China (PBOC) had typically pegged the value of the Chinese currency (RMB) […]

Economic recovery close to self-sustaining

Economic recovery close to self-sustaining Each and every day there is a consistent drumbeat that the equity markets are in nosebleed territory and that the end of the six-year bull market is close. Don’t believe it! Almost all of the underlying indexes, anecdotal evidence, and most of the headline data indicate that the economy is […]

Are equity prices too high?

It really must be confusing for the ordinary investor as the media continues to emphasize negative economic news. The current story line continues to be a sluggish economy, where GDP growth was 0.2 percent in the first quarter and likely to be revised to negative growth, while even Europe, long stuck with growth-killing socialism, grew […]