Should you invest with confidence?

Originally published on RGJ.com’s website http://www.rgj.com/story/money/business/2014/11/30/robert-barone-invest-confidence/19655523/ If an economist from the 1970s, ’80s or ’90s were to have time traveled forward to today, and that economist were to look at the macroeconomic environment, he/she would conclude that, despite the negativity of the media, the U.S. economy is actually doing well. • Third quarter real GDP […]

Should investors worry QE3 has ended?

Originally published on RGJ.com’s website http://www.rgj.com/story/money/business/2014/11/16/robert-barone-investors-worry-qe-ended/19080941/ As October ended, the Fed announced an end to its controversial money printing policy, known as QE3 (the third round of quantitative easing). In QE3, the Fed purchased large quantities of U.S government securities. When the Fed purchases bonds, it creates new money in the form of bank reserves. […]

Did October’s volatility keep you up?

Originally published on Reno Gazette Journal’s website http://www.rgj.com/story/money/business/2014/11/02/robert-barone-octobers-volatility-keep/18306213/ In the middle of October, the equity markets became quite volatile, worrying about such things as a growth slowdown in Europe, China and the developed world; the impact of a stronger dollar on multinational corporate earnings; and Ebola, ISIS and other geopolitical issues. The worry was, and […]

Is This Correction Over Yet?

Originally published in Reno Gazette Journal http://www.rgj.com/story/money/economy/2014/10/19/correction-yet/17494021/ I’ve never seen a market correction that wasn’t scary. And this one is no exception, especially since computer-based trading has significantly increased volatility. But, if we include the volatility, which means using intraday highs and lows, the intraday low on Wednesday was 9.8 percent lower than the intraday […]

Why “Average” Wage Rates May Be Misleading

Much has been made of Fed Chair Janet Yellen’s stance that the labor market still has a lot of slack. That message remained in the Fed’s September communique. As part of her justification, the Chairwoman points to the fact that the average hourly wage rate has remained at or near the “official” rate of inflation, […]

Economic Overview

Nearly all of the indicators for the U.S. are green (see table) The U.S. Labor Market Except for the Fed, which looks like it can’t tell the difference between structural and cyclical, the labor market looks strong The U3 unemployment rate fell to 5.9% in September, the lowest it has been since July ’08. Job […]