Warnings about the fiscal cliff have saturated the US public debate. But consumers are still spending, even though they face huge potential tax hikes, while companies are being very cautious—even though they have relatively little to lose. (more…)
Even by the standards of the sovereign-debt crisis, the provisional agreement reached yesterday by euro-area finance ministers and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on a second Greek rescue package looks like a messy fudge. It is clear that Greece’s euro-area partners are determined to avoid a near-term euro-area exit, but a long-term solution will require a much more effective growth strategy. (more…)
Something is changing in the US economic recovery. Housing and autos are finally starting to wake up from a recession-induced slumber, and the timing couldn’t be better.
The Philadelphia Fed Index, a leading measure of US economic activity, beat analysts’ expectations. But what caught our eye—and many others’ as well—was a detail within the survey: the future index jumped more sharply than it has since February 1991, when the first Gulf War ended unexpectedly quickly. (more…)
We’re living in a world of zero interest-rate policies (ZIRP). Central bank interest rates and market yields are at historical lows in most of the developed world and some of the emerging world. Are you making ZIRPonomics work for you? (more…)
It seems like every twist and turn in the US employment data is being observed under a microscope. But don’t let the weak job numbers in March fool you—the underlying trends still point to continued improvements on the employment front. (more…)
Risk-taking is an important component of an economic recovery, as it unlocks spending and investment power that is pent up during a downturn. But two and a half years since the US recession ended, individual investors are still playing it safe. (more…)
There seems to be a disconnect between US corporate earnings and the state of the economy these days. (more…)