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25 November. 2016 Don't Bank on Hammond Being Able to Use His Fiscal Headroom (My Publications)

The Chancellor hinted in the Autumn Statement that the fiscal consolidation might not be as severe as it appears on paper because he has built in some "fiscal headroom". By that, Mr. Hammond means that he could borrow more and still adhere to his new, self-imposed rules.

25 November. 2016 German GDP Growth Will Rebound in Q4 (My Publications)

Yesterday's economic data in Germany confirmed that the economy slowed in Q3, but also added to the evidence that growth will rebound in Q4. The second estimate for Q3 showed that real GDP rose 0.2% quarter-on-quarter, slowing from a 0.4% gain in Q2.

25 October. 2016 Encouraging rebound in October EZ PMIs (My Publications)

PMI data in the Eurozone rebounded convincingly in October, as the composite index rose to a 10-month high of 53.7, from 52.6 in September. The gain fully reversed the weakness at the end of Q3.

25 November. 2016 Brazilian Inflation is Easing, but in Mexico, it is Heading North (My Publications)

This week's November mid-month inflation reports in Brazil and Mexico underscored their divergent trends. Inflation pressures are steadily falling in Brazil, but in Mexico, the pass-through from the MXN's sell- off is driving up inflation and inflation expectations.

25 Nov. 2015 Q3 Inventory Revisions Limit the Potential for Q4 Growth Rebound (My Publications)

The hefty upward revision to Q3 inventories means we have to lower our working assumption for fourth quarter GDP growth, because the year-end inventory rebound we previously expected is now much less likely to happen. Remember, the GDP contribution from inventories is equal to the change in the pace of inventory accumulation between quarters, and we're struggling to see a faster rate of accumulation in Q4 after the hefty revised $90B third quarter gain. Inventory holdings are in line with the trend in place since the recession of 2001; firms don't need to build inventory now at a faster pace.

25 Nov. 2015 IFO Repeats Message from PMIs: German Economy is in Good Form (My Publications)

Survey data in Germany continue to tell an upbeat story on the economy. The IFO business climate index rose to 109.0 in November from 108.2 in October, lifted by gains in both the expectations and current assessment indexes. The IFO tends to be slightly over-optimistic on GDP growth, but our first chart shows that the survey points to upside risks in the fourth quarter.

25 Nov. 2015 Privatisations Conceal Underlying Health of Public Finances (My Publications)

The Chancellor is likely to announce plans for additional public sector asset sales in today's Autumn Statement, to help arrest the unanticipated rise in the debt-to-GDP ratio this year. But privatisations rarely improve the underlying health of the public finances, partly because assets seldom are sold for their full value. And the Chancellor is running out of viable assets to privatise; the low-hanging, juiciest fruits have already been plucked.

25 October. 2016 Can the Government Afford to Sacrifice the City? (My Publications)

When you read between the lines of its public statements on Brexit, the Government appears to be prioritising controlling immigration over maintaining unfettered access to the single market, much to the chagrin of the financial sector.

25 October. 2016 Consumers Confidence is High, but Expect an October Correction (My Publications)

Recent consumer confidence numbers have been strong enough that we don't need to see any further increase. The expectations components of both the Michigan and Conference Board surveys are consistent with real spending growth of 21⁄2-to- 3%, which is about the best we can expect when real income growth, after tax, is trending at about 21⁄2%.

25 September 2017 Argentina's Economy is Improving, Good News for Macri and Markets (My Publications)

Argentina's economy continues to recover steadily.

25 September 2017 China Downgraded but Risk of a Default is Slim, China is a Saver (My Publications)

S&P downgraded Chinese government debt last week to A+ from AA- yesterday, following a Moody's downgrade last May.

25 September 2017 Has Sterling's Rally Now Run Its Course? (My Publications)

The speed of sterling's rally this month has caught us by surprise.

25 September 2017 Another Month, Another Robust PMI Report in the Eurozone (My Publications)

The Eurozone economy ended the third quarter on a strong note, according to the PMIs.

25 Sept. 2015 Yellen Defends Orthodoxy: Policy Lags Mean Rates to Rise this Year (My Publications)

Fed Chair Yellen set out a robust and detailed defense of the orthodox approach to monetary policy in her speech in Amherst, MA, yesterday afternoon. Her core argument could have come straight from the textbook: As the labor market tightens, cost pressures will build. Monetary policy operates with a "substantial" lag, so waiting too long is dangerous; the "...prudent strategy is to begin tightening in a timely fashion and at a gradual pace".

25 Sept. 2015 Economic Sentiment is Holding Up amid Investor Angst (My Publications)

The two main national surveys--IFO and INSEE-- both beat consensus forecasts yesterday, supporting our story of that economic sentiment is holding up relatively well in the face increasing investor anxiety. In Germany, the main IFO business climate index rose marginally to 108.5 from a revised 108.4 in August, boosted by an increase in the expectations index to a six-month high of 103.3, up from 102.0 in August. The IFO expectations index points to real GDP growth rising 0.5%-to-0.6% quarter-on-quarter in Q3.

25 Sept. 2015 Mexico's Recovery Still in Place, And Brazil's Woes Deepening (My Publications)

The state of the Mexican economy is still favorable, despite the slowdown over the last few quarters. This week, the IGAE economic activity index--a monthly proxy for GDP--rose 2.0% year-over-year in July, a relatively solid pace, but down from 3.2% in June, and 2.6% in the first half. All these data suggest that economic activity failed to gather momentum at the beginning of Q3 after a disappointing first half of the year.

25 Nov. 2015 Do September's Weak Sales Data Signal Trouble in Mexico? (My Publications)

Improving fundamentals have supported private spending in Mexico during the last few quarters. This week's soft retail sales report does not change the picture of a strong underlying trend in consumption. Sales were weaker than expected, falling 1.1% month-to-month in September, but this followed a 1.5% jump in August, and average gains of 1.1% in the previous three months. Mexican retail sales are much more volatile than in most developed economies, and we have been expecting mean reversion following rapid gains during the first half of the year and most of Q3.

25 May. 2016 Trade Deficit Set for April Rebound, but the Future Looks Brighter (My Publications)

A widening core trade deficit is the inevitable consequence of a strengthening currency and faster growth than most of your trading partners. Falling oil prices have limited the headline damage by driving down net oil imports, but the downward trend in core exports since late 2014 has been steep and sustained, as our first chart shows. The deterioration meant that trade subtracted an average of 0.3 percentage points from GDP growth in the past three quarters.

25 July. 2016 EZ Sentiment Looks Resilient in the Face of Brexit...For Now (My Publications)

Friday's July PMI reports presented investors with a rather confusing story. The composite PMI in the Eurozone fell trivially to 52.9 in July, from 53.1 in June, despite rising PMIs in Germany and France. The final data on 3 August will give the full story, but Markit noted that private sector growth outside the core slowed to its weakest pace since December 2014.

25 July. 2016 Should We Believe the Downbeat PMI? (My Publications)

Last week's news that the composite PMI collapsed to 47.7 in July--its lowest level since April 2009--from 52.4 in June is the first clear indication that the U.K. is heading for a recession.

25 June. 2015 Germany Needs Stronger Private Investment to Drive the Recovery (My Publications)

The chaos in Greece was identified as the main culprit for yesterday's soft IFO report. The headline business climate index fell to 107.4 in July, down from 108.1 in May, driven by declines in respondents' views on the current economy and their expectations for the future. We expected a dip in the he adline IFO, but we were surprised by the fall in the manufacturing sub-index, given the firmer PMI earlier this week.

25 July 2017 Will the Participation Rate Continue to Defy Gravity? (My Publications)

The participation rate--the proportion of people either in or looking for work--has held steady over the last decade, despite the ageing of the population and the rise in student numbers.

25 July 2017 The July PMIs Provide a Dose of Reality on the Eurozone Economy (My Publications)

Yesterday's PMIs kicked off a busy week for Eurozone data on a downbeat note. The composite EZ PMI fell to a five-month low of 55.8 in July, from 56.3 in June; it was constrained by a 0.6 point dip in the manufacturing index to 56.8.

25 January 2017 The Fiscal Plans Won't Be Softened, Despite December's Better Figures (My Publications)

December's public finance figures suggest that borrowing is on track to come in a bit below the forecasts set out in the Autumn Statement in November. But we caution against expecting the Chancellor to unveil a material reduction in the scale of the fiscal consolidation set to hit the economy in his Budget on 8th March.

25 July 2017 Korean Q2 GDP Growth to Provide Evidence of Chinese Slowdown (My Publications)

After strong real GDP growth in Q1, China commentators called the peak, claiming that growth would slow for the rest of 2017.

25 June. 2015 When Will Small Firms Run Out of Labor Market Insiders to Hire? (My Publications)

The high and rising proportion of small businesses reporting difficulty in filling job openings is perhaps the biggest reason to worry that the pace of wage increases could accelerate quickly. If they pick up too far, the Fed's intention to raise rates at a "gradual" pace will be upended. The NFIB survey of small businesses--mostly very small--shows employers are having as much trouble recruiting staff as at the peak of the boom in 2006.

25 Mar. 2015 China's slowdown a threat to U.S. Industry even when ISM revives (My Publications)

We have argued over the past couple of years that if you want to know what's likely to happen to U.S. manufacturing over the next few months, you should look at China's PMI, rather than the domestic ISM survey, which is beset by huge seasonal adjustment problems.

25 May 2017 Second Estimate of Q1 GDP to Confirm Sharp Slowdown (My Publications)

We expect the second estimate of Q1 GDP, released today, to restate that quarter-on-quarter growth slowed to just 0.3%, from 0.7% in Q4. The second estimate of growth rarely is different to the first.

25 May. 2016 German Domestic Demand Growth to Slow in Q2, After a Solid Q1 (My Publications)

Detailed GDP data yesterday showed that the domestic German economy fired on all cylinders in the first quarter. Real GDP rose 0.7% quarter-on-quarter in Q1, up from 0.3% in Q4, lifted by strong investment and spending. Domestic demand rose 0.8%, only slightly slower than the 0.9% ris e in the fourth quarter. Net exports fell 0.3%, a bit better than in Q4, when gross exports fell outright.

25 May. 2016 Growth in Mexico Consumers' Spending Remain Resilient (My Publications)

Improving consumer fundamentals continue to underpin growth in private spending in Mexico, according to retail sales and inflation reports published this week. March retail sales were much stronger than expected, jumping 3.0% month-to-month, after averaging gains of 0.8% in the preceding three months. And sales for the three months through February were revised up marginally.

25 May 2017 Is it Time to Tell a Less Upbeat Story on the Eurozone Consumer? (My Publications)

Markets cheered soaring business surveys in the Eurozone earlier this week, and recent consumer sentiment data also have been cause for celebration. The advance GfK consumer confidence index in Germany rose to a record high of 10.4 in June, from 10.2 in May.

25 May 2017 Balance Sheet Run-off set to Start in the Fall, but Slowly (My Publications)

The FOMC minutes confirmed that most FOMC members were not swayed by the weak-looking first quarter GDP numbers or the soft March core CPI. Both are considered likely to prove "transitory", and the underlying economic outlook is little changed from March.

25 Mar. 2015 LatAm Central Banks Will Exploit Market's View on Fed's Stance (My Publications)

The Colombian economy--the star of the previous economic cycle in LatAm--is now slowing significantly, due mostly to strong external headwinds. Exports plunged by 40% year-over-year in January, down from -29% in December, with all of the main categories contracting in the worst performance since 1980.

25 Mar. 2015 PMIs point strengthening cyclical recovery (My Publications)

Evidence is mounting that the cyclical recovery in the Eurozone accelerated further in the first quarter. The Composite PMI in the euro area rose to 54.1 in March, up from 53.3 in February, taking the quarterly average to 53.3, its highest level since the second quarter of 2011. Combined with latest available retail sales and industrial production data, this is consistent with real GDP growth in the euro area accelerating to about 0.4-to-0.5% quarter-on quarter in the first quarter, from 0.3% in Q4.

25 September 2017 Oil Output has Already Rebounded from the Harvey Hit (My Publications)

The rising trend in U.S. oil production was interrupted only briefly by the hurricanes.

26 Apr. 2016 Aircraft Will Lift March Durables, but Early Easter Will Depress Core (My Publications)

The good news in today's March durable goods report is that a rebound in orders for Boeing aircraft means February's 3.0% drop in headline orders won't be repeated. The company reported orders for 69 aircraft in March, compared to just one in February.

26 Jan. 2016 Housing Wealth About to Breach the Pre-Crash Peak (My Publications)

Sometime very soon, likely in the second quarter of this year, the stock of net housing wealth will exceed the $13.1T peak recorded before the crash, in the fourth quarter of 2005. At the post-crash low, in the first quarter of 2009, net housing equity had fallen by 53%, to just $6.2T. The recovery began in earnest in 2012, and over the past year net housing wealth has been rising at a steady pace just north of 10%. With housing demand rising, credit conditions easing and inventory still very tight, we have to expect home prices to keep rising at a rapid pace.

26 Jan. 2016 IFO Points to Slow Start to Q1 for the German Economy (My Publications)

Yesterday's IFO report reinforced the message from the PMIs that the Eurozone economy stumbled slightly at the beginning of the first quarter. The headline business climate index fell to an 11-month low of 107.3 in January, from a revised 108.6 in December, hit mainly by a drop in the expectations component. Intensified market volatility and worries over further weakness in the Chinese economy likely were the main drivers. Last week's dovish message from Mr. Draghi, however, came after the survey's cut-off date, leaving us cautiously optimistic for a rebound next month.

26 Jan. 2016 The Collapse in Oil Prices Won't Reinvigorate the Economy in 2016 (My Publications)

The response of U.K. producers and consumers to lower oil prices could not have been more different to those on the other side of the Atlantic. Counter-intuitively, U.K. oil production has grown strongly over the last year, while investment hasn't collapsed to the same extent as in the U.S., yet. Meanwhile, U.K. households have thrown caution to the wind and already have spent the windfall from the previous drop in oil prices, unlike their more prudent--so far--U.S. counterparts. With the costs still to come but most of the benefits already enjoyed, lower oil prices will be neutral for 2016 U.K. GDP growth, at best.

26 Jan. 2015 Greece needs debt relief regardless of new government (My Publications)

The first exit poll published at 18.00 CET on Sunday evening points to a landslide victory for Syriza, and the real possibility that the party could form a majority government. Counter-intuitively, the prospects for Syriza here depend upon how the smaller parties do.

26 Jan. 2015 Banxico on Hold, Thanks to Slowing Inflation--But No Easing (My Publications)

Mexican inflation fell sharply in the first two weeks of January, dipping by 0.2% from two weeks earlier, thanks to lower energy prices and a reduction in long-distance phone tariffs. Telecom reform explains about 15bp of the headline reduction.

26 Feb. 2016 The Foundations of the U.K. Recovery are Remarkably Fragile (My Publications)

The preliminary estimate of a 0.5% quarter-on-quarter rise in GDP in the fourth quarter of 2015 was left unrevised, but that was the only nugge t of good news from yesterday's second GDP release. The expenditure breakdown hardly could have looked more troubling.

26 Jan. 2015 All Eyes on ECI - Nothing Matters More to the Fed than Wages (My Publications)

This week is, potentially, hugely important in determining the Fed's near-term view of the real state of the labor market and its approach to monetary policy over the next few months. The key event is the release of the fourth quarter employment cost index, which could make a material difference to perceptions of the degree of wage pressure.

26 January 2017 GDP Growth Remained Brisk in Q4, but Headwinds are Building (My Publications)

Today's preliminary estimate of Q4 GDP likely will show that the Brexit vote has not caused the economy to slow yet. But growth at the end of last year appears to have relied excessively on household spending, which has been increasingly financed by debt. GDP growth likely will slow decisively in Q1 as the squeeze on households' real incomes intensifies.

26 January 2017 The IFO Points to Solid GDP Growth in Germany, Despite Dip (My Publications)

The trend of consensus-beating EZ economic data was brought to a halt yesterday. The IFO business climate index in Germany slipped to a five-month low of 109.8 in January, from 111.0 in December, mainly due to a fall in the expectations index. But we are not alarmed. The dip in the headline comes after a run of strong data, and the IFO remains consistent with GDP growth of about 1.6% year-over-year.

26 July. 2016 The German Economy Stalled in Q2, But Should Rebound in Q3 (My Publications)

The German statistical office will supply a confidential estimate to Eurostat for this week's advance euro area Q2 GDP data. Our analysis suggests this number will be grim, and weigh on the aggregate EZ estimate. Our GDP model, which includes data for retail sales, industrial production and net exports, forecasts that real GDP in Germany contracted 0.1% quarter-on-quarter in the second quarter, after a 0.7% jump in Q1.

26 July. 2016 What Impact Would QE Have on Gilt Yields? (My Publications)

We think that the higher inflation outlook means that the MPC will dash hopes of unconventional stimulus on August 4 and instead will opt only to cut Bank Rate to 0.25%, from 0.50% currently. The minutes of July's MPC meeting show, however, that the MPC is mulling all the options. As a result, it is worth reviewing how a QE programme might be designed and what impact it might have on bond yields.

26 June 2017 Banxico's Hiking Cycle is Likely Over, While the BCB eyes a 100bp (My Publications)

Banxico raised its benchmark interest rate by another 25bp to 7.0% at last Thursday's policy meeting. This hike follows nine previous increases, totalling 375bp since December 2015, in order to put a lid on inflation expectations and actual inflation. Both have been lifted this year by the lagged effect of the MXN's weakness last year, the "gasolinazo", and the minimum wage increase in January.

26 July 2017 Preliminary GDP to Confirm Growth Remained Sluggish in Q2 (My Publications)

Today's preliminary estimate of GDP likely will show that the economy continued to struggle in response to high inflation, further fiscal austerity and Brexit uncertainty.

26 July 2017 National Surveys are Not Bogged Down by Disappointing PMIs (My Publications)

Yesterday's national business surveys provided an optimistic counterbalance to the underwhelming PMIs on Monday, although they all suggest that the euro area economy is in good form.

26 January 2017 Will Today's Data Shift Fourth Quarter GDP Growth Forecasts? (My Publications)

Three of today's economic reports, all for December, could move the needle on fourth quarter GDP growth. Ahead of the data, we're looking for growth of 1.8%, a bit below the consensus, 2.2%, and significantly weaker than the Atlanta Fed's GDPNow model, which projects 2.8%.

26 July 2017 China's Reform Scorecard Part 1: Labour Market and Demographics (My Publications)

Over the next 18 months we expect to see interest rates break out further on the upside. Initially, we expect developed market growth to be resilient to that.

26 Feb. 2016 Growth in Narrow Money is Robust, but Slowing Noticeably (My Publications)

Yesterday's money supply data gave some respite after last month's disappointing slowdown. Broad money growth--M3--rose to 5.0% year-over-year, from 4.7% in December, but the details were less encouraging. The rebound was solely due slower declines in medium-term deposits, short-term debt issuance, and repurchase agreements.

26 Feb. 2016 Core PCE Inflation Set to Jump - Fed Target is Within Reach in 2016 (My Publications)

All eyes will be on the core PCE deflator data today, in the wake of the upside surprise in the January core CPI, reported last week. The numbers do not move perfectly together each month, but a 0.2% increase in the core deflator is a solid bet, with an outside chance of an outsized 0.3% jump.

26 April 2017 Weaker Growth in Tax Receipts Adds to Slowdown Signs (My Publications)

March's public sector borrowing figures brought more signs that the economy has lost considerable momentum this year. Borrowing, on the PSNB excluding public sector banks measure, came in at £5.1B in March, up slightly from £4.3B in March 2016.

26 August. 2015 Sharp Swings In LatAm Markets Highlights Their Vulnerabilities (My Publications)

LatAm currencies and stock markets have suffered badly in recent weeks, but Monday turned into a massacre with the MSCI stock index for the region falling close to 4%. Markets rebounded marginally yesterday, but remain substantially lower than their April-May peaks. Each economy has its own story, so the market hit has been uneven, but all have been battered as China's stock market has crashed. The downward spiral in commodity prices--oil hit almost a seven-year low on Monday--is making the economic and financial outlook even worse for LatAm.

26 August. 2015 Solid Net Trade Lifts German GDP in Q2, but Payback Likely in Q3 (My Publications)

The IFO did its part to alleviate the stock market gloom yesterday, with the business climate index rising slightly to 108.3 in August from 108.0 in July. The August reading doesn't reflect the panic in equities, though, and we need to wait until next month to gauge the real hit to business sentiment. The increase in the headline index was driven by businesses assessment of current output, with the key expectations index falling trivially to 102.2 from a revised 102.3 in July. This survey currently points to a stable trend in real GDP growth of about 0.4% quarter-on-quarter, consistent with our expectation of full year growth of about 1.5%.

26 April 2017 Poor Q1 Data Puts Pressure on BanRep to Cut Rates Rapidly (My Publications)

Colombia's economy activity is deteriorating rapidly, suggesting that BanRep will have to cut interest rates on Friday. Incoming data make it clear that the economy has moved into a period of deceleration, painting a starkly different picture than a year ago.

26 April 2017 French Business Confidence is Solid, but Manufacturing Fell in Q1 (My Publications)

French manufacturing confidence soared at the start of Q2. The headline INSEE index jumped to a six-year high of 108 in April, from an upwardly revised 105 in March. The headline was flattered by a big increase in the "past activity" index, but the survey's leading indicators also improved.French manufacturing confidence soared at the start of Q2. The headline INSEE index jumped to a six-year high of 108 in April, from an upwardly revised 105 in March. The headline was flattered by a big increase in the "past activity" index, but the survey's leading indicators also improved.

26 Apr. 2016 Focus on the Positive Details in Yesterday's German IFO Survey (My Publications)

Yesterday's German IFO survey suggests that economic momentum in the Eurozone's largest country remained modest at the start of Q2. The headline business climate index fell trivially to 106.6 in April, from 106.7 in March, lower than the consensus expectation of an increase to 107.2.

26 April 2017 The Surge in Spending on Building Materials Can't Last Forever (My Publications)

Across all the major economic data, perhaps the biggest weather distortions late last year and in the early part of the year were in the retail sales numbers, specifically, the building materials component. Sales rocketed at a 16.5% annualized rate in the first quarter, the biggest gain since the spring of 2014, following a 10.2% increase in the fourth quarter of last year.

26 August. 2015 U.S. ISM Will Follow China's PMI, But Not Yet - Services ISM Strong (My Publications)

The decline in China's unofficial PMI, which has dropped to a six-year low, signals increasing troubles ahead for U.S. manufacturers selling into China, and U.S. businesses operating in China. This does not mean, though, that the U.S. ISM will immediately fall as low as the Caixin/Markit China index appears to suggest in the next couple of months. Our first chart shows that in recent years the U.S. manufacturing ISM has tended hugely to outperform China's PMI from late spring to late fall, thanks to flawed seasonals.

26 August. 2016 Brazil's Market-set Prices Remain Sticky, Rate Cuts to be Postponed? (My Publications)

According to Brazil's mid-August inflation reading, which is a preview of the IPCA index, overall inflation pressures are easing. But some price stickiness remains, due to inertia and temporary shocks, despite the severity of the recession and the rapid deterioration of the labour market in recent months.

26 Feb. 2015 GDP growth will pick up in the Eurozone this year (My Publications)

Hard economic data for the first quarter will appear over the next few weeks, but the EC sentiment survey later today gives a useful overview of how the euro area economy started the year.

26 Feb. 2016 A Tale of Two Current Account Paths, Adjusting to New Realities (My Publications)

Brazil's external accounts continue to be the country's bright spot, having improved considerably in recent quarters. The unadjusted current account deficit for January, USD4.8B, was lower than expected and much smaller than the USD12.2B shortfall a year earlier.

26 Feb. 2015 Downside Risks for January CPI and Durable Orders? (My Publications)

Two key reports today, on January consumer prices and durable goods orders, have the power to move markets substantially. We think both will undershoot market expectations, though we would be deeply reluctant to read too much into either report; both are distorted by temporary factors.

26 August. 2016 No Clear Steer Likely From Yellen Today, After the Spring Debacle (My Publications)

Chair Yellen's speech at Jackson Hole at 10am Eastern time today has the potential to move markets substantially, but that's not our core expectation. It's more likely, we think, that Dr. Yellen will stick to the core FOMC view, which remains that "only gradual increases" in rates will be required, and that rates are "likely to remain, for some time, below levels that are expected to prevail in the longer run".

26 August. 2016 Early GDP Estimates Often Fail to Register Turning Points (My Publications)

Today's second estimate of Q2 GDP likely will restate the preliminary estimate that quarter-onquarter growth picked up to 0.6%, from 0.4% in Q1. Over the last two decades, the second estimate of GDP has differed from the preliminary estimate just 38% of the time.

26 August. 2016 EZ Economic Bulls Checked by IFO and INSEE Business Surveys (My Publications)

Yesterday's IFO survey in Germany was a nasty downside surprise for markets. The business climate index slipped to 106.2 in August, from 108.3 in July, well below the consensus forecast for a modest rise. In addition, the expectations index slid ominously to 100.1, from a revised 102.1 in July.

25 January 2017 The EZ Economy is Performing Strongly, But Inflation is Picking Up (My Publications)

The Eurozone economy is in fine shape, according to the latest PMI data. The composite EZ PMI fell trivially to 54.3 in January, but remains strong. A marginal dip in the services index offset a small increase in the manufacturing PMI to a cyclical high of 55.1. These data tell a story of a strong private sector that continues to support GDP growth.

25 January 2017 Brazil's Current Account Gap is Shrinking, but not for Much Longer (My Publications)

Brazil's external accounts were the bright spot last year, once again, but the ne ws will soon take a turn for the worse. The current account deficit fell to just USD24B last year, or 1.3% of GDP, from USD59B in 2015. The improvement was driven by the trade surplus, which rose to USD48B, the highest since 1992, when the comparable data series begins. A 20% plunge in imports, coupled with a mere 3% dip in exports, explain the rising trade surplus.

24 Mar. 2016 Mexico's Domestic Sector Still Resilient - a Good Start to the Year (My Publications)

Mexico's CPI rose just 0.1% in the first half of March, due to higher core prices. The increase was broadbased within this component, with goods prices increasing by 0.2% and core services 0.4%. Core services prices were driven by temporary factors, including vacation packages and higher airfare tickets. Non-core prices, meanwhile, fell 0.5%, due mainly to falling fresh food prices.

24 March 2017 Boeing Likely Boosted February Orders,Oil Lifting the Core Trend (My Publications)

The nominal value of orders for non-defense capital equipment, excluding aircraft, fell by 3.4% last year. This was less terrible than 2015, when orders plunged by 8.4%, but both years were grim when compared to the average 7.5% increase over the previous five years.

24 March 2017 Q1 Consumption will be Weak, Despite February's Retail Recovery (My Publications)

The 1.4% month-to-month rise in retail sales volumes in February is not a game-changer for the economy's growth prospects in Q1. The increase reversed just under half of the 2.9% decline between October and January. The 1.5% fall in retail sales in the three months to February, compared to the previous three months, is the worst result in seven years.

24 Mar. 2016 In the March Employment Report, Wages are Wild (My Publications)

This is the final Monitor before we head out for our spring break, so we have added a page in order to make room to preview the employment report due next Friday, April 4. We expect a solid but unspectacular 175K increase in payrolls, slowing from February's unsustainable 242K, but still robust.

24 Mar. 2016 EZ Consumers' Spending Is Slowing, but Won't Collapse (My Publications)

All the evidence indicates that growth in Eurozone consumers' spending is slowing. We think data today will show that the advance GfK consumer sentiment index in Germany was unchanged at 9.5 in April, but the headline index does not correlate well with spending. The "business expectations" index is better, and while it likely will increase slightly, our first chart shows that it continues to signal a slowdown in consumers' spending growth.

24 Mar. 2015 Core Inflation Set to Slow in the Short-term, But Watch Services (My Publications)

It's probably too soon to start looking for second round effects from the drop in gasoline prices in the core CPI. History suggests quite strongly that sharp declines in energy prices feed into the core by depressing the costs of production, distribution and service delivery, but the lags are quite long, a year or more.

24 Mar. 2015 Risks are Rising Rapidly in Greece, but Grexit Will Likely be Avoided (My Publications)

In a letter earlier this month, Greek prime minister Alexis Tsipras warned German chancellor Angela Merkel that failure to disburse additional bailout funds would lead to an imminent cash crunch. Last week's meeting with EU leaders and the ECB yielded no progress, intensifying the risk that Greece will literally run out of money within weeks.

24 March 2017 Rapid Disinflation will Allow the BCB to Ease More Quickly (My Publications)

Brazil has made a convincing escape from high inflation in the past few months, laying the groundwork for a gradual economic recovery and faster cuts in interest rates. Mid-March CPI data, released this week, confirmed that inflation pressures eased substantially this month.

24 March 2017 TLTROs Finish with a Bang, but it Probably does not Mean Much (My Publications)

Robust demand in the ECB's final TLTRO auction was the main story in EZ financial markets yesterday. Euro area banks--474 in total-- took up €233.5B in the March TLTRO, well above the consensus forecast €110B. To us, this strong demand is a sign that EZ banks are taking advantage of the TLTROs' incredibly generous conditions.

24 May. 2016 The Weaker Dollar Will Lift Nominal Retail Sales Growth (My Publications)

The recent run of grim sales and earnings numbers from major national retailers, including Kohl's, Nordstrom, and Macy's, reflects two major trends. The first is obvious; the rising market share of internet sales is squeezing brick and mortar retailers, as our first chart shows. We have no idea how far this trend has yet to run but it shows no signs yet of peaking.

24 Nov. 2015 A New Political Era For Argentina - Will the Economy Recover? (My Publications)

Mauricio Macri, the centre-right candidate of the Cambiemos--Let's Change--coalition won Argentina's weekend presidential election. Mr. Macri, the mayor of Buenos Aires, defeated Daniel Scioli, of the ruling Front for Victory--FpV--coalition on Sunday. His victory marks the end of the 12-year Kirchnerist era, characterized by wild inflation, huge public deficits and unsustainable subsidies. If Mr. Macri lives up to his promises, Argentina, the second-largest economy in South America, will become an orthodox economy on a sustainable path. The recovery will come, we think, but it will be a long and challenging process.

24 Nov. 2015 Bullish PMI Survey Won't Prevent Further ECB Stimulus (My Publications)

Yesterday's PMI reports repeated the message of a firm cyclical Eurozone recovery, despite investors' angst over deflation and the underwhelming Q3 GDP data earlier this month. The composite index in the zone rose to a 54-month high of 54.4 in November from 53.9 in October, lifted by strong output and solid new business growth. Our first chart shows the rise in the PMI points to slight upside risks in Q4 to the four quarter trend in real GDP growth of 0.4% per quarter.

24 May. 2016 EZ PMI Data Suggest that GDP Growth is Slowing Marginally (My Publications)

Eurozone PMI data yesterday presented investors with a confusing message. The composite index fell marginally to 52.9 in May, from 53.0 in April, despite separate data that showed that the composite PMIs rose in both Germany and France. Markit said that weakness outside the core was the key driver, but we have to wait for the final data to see the full story.

24 May 2017 Weak Tax Receipts Cast Doubt on Business Surveys' Optimism (My Publications)

April's public finances indicate that the economy has remained weak in Q2, casting doubt on the suggestion from recent business surveys that the slowdown in Q1 was just a blip.

24 May 2017 Soft Inflation Data Puts Pressure on BCB, Despite Brazil's Political Mess (My Publications)

Inflation pressures in Brazil are still easing rapidly. The mid-May unadjusted IPCA- 15 index rose just 0.2% month-to-month, much less than the 0.6% historical average for the month. Base effects pushed the year-over-year rate down to 3.8% from 4.1% in April. Food prices, healthcare and personal costs were the main drivers of the modest month-to-month increase.

24 May 2017 FOMC Minutes will Reinforce Skepticism over the Q1 Slowdown (My Publications)

The minutes of the May 2/3 FOMC meeting today should add some color to policymakers' blunt assertion that "The Committee views the slowing in growth during the first quarter as likely to be transitory and continues to expect that, with gradual adjustments in the stance of monetary policy, economic activity will expand at a moderate pace, labor market conditions will strengthen somewhat further, and inflation will stabilize around 2 percent over the medium term."

24 June. 2016 The U.K. Wants out of the EU, and Markets are Not Happy (My Publications)

The two polls suggesting the U.K. would remain in the EU yesterday proved to be a noose for investors to hang themselves with, as the results pointed to a vote for Brexit. Markets already are in disarray, and the direction is as we expected and feared. EUR/GBP is up 7%, and the DAX 30 in Germany is indicated by futures to plunge a hefty 7%-to-8% at the open. Bund yields will collapse too, and all eyes will be on the spread between Germany and the rest of the periphery.

24 June. 2016 Markets Wild After Brexit Vote, LatAm Currencies Under Pressure (My Publications)

The U.K.'s unexpected vote for Brexit means a stronger USD for the foreseeable future, pressure on EM currencies and increasing risk premiums. LatAm fundamentals will a sideshow for some time. The focus will be on the currencies, which will be the main shock absorbers.

24 January 2017 The Boost to Disposable Incomes from Mortgage Refinancing is Fading (My Publications)

The steady decline in mortgage rates since the financial crisis has helped to underpin strong growth in household spending. Existing borrowers have been able to refinance loans at ever-lower interest rates, while the proportion of first-time buyers' incomes absorbed by interest and capital payments has declined to a record low. As a result, the proportion of annual household incomes taken up by interest payments has fallen to 4.6%, from a peak of 10% in 2008.

24 July 2017 Asian Trade Dragged Down by Chinese Slump (My Publications)

Korean exports are often a useful gauge of Asian and global trade; the country sits near the beginning of the global supply chain. It also happens to publish early in the data cycle and provides a measure of exports in the first 20 days of the month.

24 July 2017 High Inflation Won't Last as Long as Markets Expect (My Publications)

After pricing-in the consequences of sterling's depreciation for inflation last year only slowly, markets are at risk of costly inertia again.

24 January 2017 LatAm Currencies Enjoying a Moment of Calm, but Risks Remain (My Publications)

Most LatAm currencies traded higher against the USD yesterday, adding to the gains achieved after Donald Trump's inauguration last Friday. The MXN, which was the best performer during yesterday's session, was up about 0.8%; it was followed by the CLP, and the BRL. The positive performance of most LatAm currencies, especially the MXN, is related to positioning and technical factors.

24 January 2017 EZ Economic Data Will Struggle to Live Up to Expectations in Q1 (My Publications)

Consensus forecasts expect further gains in this week's key EZ business surveys, but the data will struggle to live up to expectations. The headline EZ PMIs, the IFO in Germany, and French manufacturing sentiment have increased almost uninterruptedly since August, and we think the consensus is getting ahead of itself expecting further gains. Our first chart shows that macroeconomic surprise indices in the euro area have jumped to levels which usually have been followed by mean-reversion.

24 February 2017 The BCB Remains on Track to Deliver More Easing this Year (My Publications)

Brazil's central bank conformed to expectations on Wednesday, cutting the Selic rate by 75 basis points to 12.25%, without bias. Overall, the BCB recognises that the economic signals have been mixed in recent weeks, but the Copom echoed our view that the data are pointing to a gradual stabilisation and, ultimately, a recovery in GDP growth later this year.

24 January 2017 Chainstore Sales Growth is Trending Upwards, but not for Long (My Publications)

Now that the holidays are just a distant memory, the distortions they cause in an array of economic data are fading. The problems are particularly acute in the weekly data­ -- mortgage applications, chainstore sales and jobless claims -- because Christmas Day falls on a different day of the week each year.

24 July 2017 Not Much Upside for Eurozone Equities in the Rest of 2017 (My Publications)

The tailwinds that have propelled Eurozone equities higher since the middle of last year remain place, in principle. In the economy, political uncertainty in the euro area has turned into an opportunity for further integration and reforms, and cyclical momentum in has picked up. And closer to the ground, fundamentals also have improved.

24 July. 2015 More Bad News From Brazil, But Mexico Strength Remains Good (My Publications)

Brazil's inflation data continue to disappoint, but they are showing some signs of improvement, at the margin. The mid-month CPI, the IPCA-15 index, jumped to 9.3% year-over-year in July, up from 8.8% in June, soaring well above the upper bound of the inflation target and reaching the highest level since December 2003, as shown in our first chart.

24 June. 2015 Q1 GDP to be Revised up, But the Big Shift Will Come Next Month (My Publications)

The third estimate of first quarter GDP growth, due today, will not be the final word. The BEA will revise the data again on July 30, when it will also release its first estimate for the second quarter and the results of its annual revision exercise. Quarterly estimates back to 2012 will be revised. The revisions are of greater interest than usual this year because the new data will incorporate the first results of the BEA's review of the seasonal problems.

24 June. 2016 Brexit Implications for the U.S: No Immediate Fed Easing (My Publications)

The U.K.'s unexpected vote for Brexit means a stronger dollar for the foreseeable future, a sharp though likely containable drop in U.S. stock prices, and a further delay before the Fed next raises rates. The vote does not necessarily mean the U.K. actually will leave the EU, because the policy choices now facing leaders of Union have changed dramatically. An offer of substantial concessions on the migration issue--the single biggest driver of the Leave vote-- might be enough to trigger a second referendum, but this is a consideration for another day.

24 June. 2015 Mexico's Soft April Consumption Will Change Course Ahead (My Publications)

Mexico's private spending stumbled at the start of the second quarter. Retail sales fell 0.3% month-to-month in April after three consecutive increases, hit by an unexpected 1.6% drop in both supermarket and apparel sales, and a surprising 1.2% fall in food sales. In year-over-year terms, total sales rose 4.6% in April, down from 5.6% in March.

24 June. 2015 Another Upbeat PMI Report Adds to the Cyclical Optimism in the EZ (My Publications)

The PMI survey yesterday painted a more upbeat picture on the Eurozone economy than we expected. The composite index rose to 54.1 in June from 53.6 in May, taking the quarterly average to its highest level since Q2 2011.

24 July. 2015 Retail Sales on Track for New High, Despite Dip in Sentiment (My Publications)

Advance Eurozone consumer sentiment fell disappointingly to -7.1 in July, from -5.6 in June, but it is consistent with a solid trend in retail sales growth. Household consumption in the zone has surged in the last four quarters, and a modest loss of momentum in Q3 and Q4 is a reasonable bet. But we see little risk of a sharp slowdown in the shor t run, and the trend in spending growth should stabilize at an annualised 1.5% this year.

24 July. 2015 While We're Out, What to Look for in the Data, and From the Fed (My Publications)

This is the last Monitor before we head to the beach, so we want to offer a few thoughts on the upcoming data and the FOMC meeting while we're out. First, a warning about the second quarter GDP number. We think that the data released so far are consistent with growth at about 3%.

24 Nov. 2015 Q3 Growth Will be Revised Up, but 2015 Will Fall Short (My Publications)

An array of data today will be mostly positive, and even the most likely candidate for a downside surprise--the October advance trade numbers--is very unlikely to change anyone's mind on the Fed's December decision. On the plus side, the first revision to third quarter GDP growth should see the headline number dragged up into almost respectable territory, at 2.4%, from the deeply underwhelming 1.5% initial estimate.

24 Nov. 2015 Will Gilts Decouple as US Treasury Yields Rise? (My Publications)

A less rapid tightening of monetary policy in the U.K. than in the U.S. should ensure that gilt yields don't move in lockstep with U.S. Treasury yields over the coming years. But the outlook for monetary policy isn't the only influence on gilt yields. We expect low levels of market liquidity in the secondary market, high levels of gilt issuance and overseas concerns about the possibility of the U.K.'s exit from the E.U. to add to the upward pressure on gilt yields.

25 August. 2016 Weak Mortgage Approvals Point to Falling House Prices Ahead (My Publications)

July's mortgage approvals data from the BBA brought clear evidence that households have held off making major financial commitments as a result of the Brexit vote. Following a 5% month-to-month fall in June, approvals fell a further 5.3% in July, leaving them at their lowest level since January 2015 and down 19% year-over-year.

25 Feb. 2015 Capex Needs to Pick up in Germany to Sustain GDP Growth (My Publications)

Real GDP in Germany grew 0.7% quarter-on-quarter in Q4, thanks mainly to a 0.4% contribution from private consumption, and a 0.2% boost from net trade. Household consumption grew 2.2% annualised in 2014, the best year for German consumers since 2006.

25 Feb. 2015 Sharp Increase in Brazil's Inflation Rate - BCB Will Have to Hike Again (My Publications)

The bad economic news in Brazil is unstoppable. The mid-month CPI index rose 1.3% month-to-month in February, as education, housing, and transport prices increased. School tuition fees jumped 6% month-to-month in February, reflecting their annual adjustment, and transport costs rose by 2% due to an increase in regulated gasoline prices.

25 August. 2016 The Collapse in Core Capex Orders is Over, Where's the Rebound? (My Publications)

The alarming-looking decline in core capital goods orders since late 2014 has been substantially due, in our view, to the rollover in investment in the mining sector. But the 29% jump in the number of oil rigs in operation, since the mid-May low, makes it clear that the collapse is over.

25 August. 2016 Surging Net Exports Prevented a Q2 GDP Contraction in Germany (My Publications)

Yesterday's final Q2 GDP report in Germany confirmed the initial data showing that the economy slowed less than we expected last quarter. Real GDP rose 0.4% quarter-on-quarter in Q2, after a 0.7% jump in Q1. The working-day adjusted year-over-year rate fell marginally to 1.8%, from 1.9% in Q1.

25 August. 2015 Market Panic Puts Pressure on ECB, but Fed's Response is Key (My Publications)

Weakness in risk assets turned into panic yesterday with the Eurostoxx falling over 6%, taking the accumulated decline to 19% since the beginning of August, and volatility hitting a three-year high. Market crashes of this kind are usually followed by a period of violent ups and downs, and we expect volatile trading in coming weeks. Following an extended bull market in risk assets, the key question investors will be asking is whether the economic cycle is turning.

25 August. 2015 The Stock Drop is Unwelcome, but the Market is not the Economy (My Publications)

If you want to know what's going to happen to the real economy over, say, the next year, don't look to the stock market for reliable clues. The relationship between swings in stock prices over single quarters and GDP growth over the following year is nonexistent, as our next chart shows.

25 Feb. 2015 Yellen Bullish on Growth and Jobs - "Patient" Set to Go in March? (My Publications)

Chair Yellen's Testimony sought clearly to tell markets that the Fed has upgraded its view on growth, and the state of the labor market. After reading the first few paragraphs, which focussed clearly on the good news, though peppered with the usual caveats, the door was open for the section on policy to signal unambiguously that the Fed is close to its first tightening.

25 Feb. 2016 Fundamentals for French Consumers Remain Resilient (My Publications)

A downbeat French INSEE consumer sentiment report yesterday continued the run of poor survey data this week. The headline index fell to 95 in February from 97 in January, indicating downside risk f or Q1 consumers' spending. But we remain optimistic that private consumption will rebound solidly, following a 0.4% quarter-on-quarter fall in Q4.

25 Jan. 2016 PMIs Point to Stable GDP Growth, Despite Disappointing Dip (My Publications)

Advance PMI data indicate a slow start to the first quarter for the Eurozone economy. The composite index fell to 53.5 in January from 54.3 in December, due to weakness in both services and manufacturing. The correlation between month-to-month changes in the PMI and MSCI EU ex-UK is a decent 0.4, and we can't rule out the ide a that the horrible equity market performance has dented sentiment. The sudden swoon in markets, however, has also led to fears of an imminent recession. But it would be a major overreaction to extrapolate three weeks' worth of price action in equities to the real economy.

25 Jan. 2016 Will Housing Debt Concerns Resurface at the Bank? (My Publications)

Data this week look set to emphasise that heat is returning to the housing market, again. The Financial Policy Committee--FPC--still has additional tools it could deploy to cool housing demand. But the root cause of surging house prices remains very cheap debt. Alongside the inflation risk posed by the labour market, the case for the MPC to begin to raise interest rates to prevent a widespread debt problem is becoming compelling.

25 January 2017 Will a Border Adjustment Tax Drive Up Inflation? (My Publications)

We've seen some alarming estimates of the potential impact on inflation of the House Republicans' plans for corporate tax reform, with some forecasts suggesting the CPI would be pushed up as much as 5%. We think the impact will be much smaller, more like 1-to-11⁄2% at most, and it could be much less, depending on what happens to the dollar. But the timing would be terrible, given the Fed's fears over the inflation risk posed by the tightness of the labor market.

25 Jan. 2016 Oil Capex Crash Nearly Over - What Happens Next to Consumers? (My Publications)

If we had known back in June 2014 that oil prices would drop to about $30, the collapse in capital spending in the oil sector would not have been a surprise. Spending on well-drilling, which accounts for about three quarters of oil capex, has dropped in line with the fall in prices, after a short lag, as our first chart shows. We think spending on equipment has tracked the fall in oil prices, too.

25 Jan. 2016 Last Week's Data Reinforce Brazil's Doves - Rates are Now on Hold (My Publications)

The bad news on economic activity keeps coming for Brazil. The formal payroll employment report-- CAGED--for December was very weak, with 120K net jobs eliminated, compared to a 40K net destruction in December 2014, according to our seasonal adjustment. The severe downturn has translated into huge job losses. The economy eliminated 1.5 million jobs last year, compared to 152K gains in 2014. Last year's job destruction was the worst since the data series started in 1992. The payroll losses have been broad-based, but manufacturing has been hit very hard, with 606K jobs eliminated, followed by civil construction and services. Since the end of 2014, the crisis has hit one sector after another.

25 Feb. 2016 Huge Upside Risk for Durable Orders as Aircraft Sales Rebound (My Publications)

Today's headline durable goods orders number for January is likely to blast through the consensus forecast, +2.7%. We expect a 6.5% jump, comfortably reversing December's 5.0% drop.

25 Feb. 2016 Is Brexit as Likely as the Markets Seem to Think? (My Publications)

Sterling weakened further yesterday in response to the perception that the odds of the U.K. leaving the E.U. in the June referendum are rising. Cable fell to $1.39, its lowest level since March 2009. It is now $0.12 below the level one would anticipate from markets' expectations for short rates, as our chart of the week on page three shows.

25 August 2017 Yellen to Talk on Financial Stability, But Might Refer to Policy too (My Publications)

Fed Chair Yellen speaks at Jackson Hole today, at 10:00 Eastern. Her topic is billed as "financial stability", but that does not necessarily preclude remarks on the outlook for the economy and policy.

25 August 2017 Trade and Investment are Failing to Offset the Consumption Slowdown (My Publications)

The second estimate of GDP left the estimate of quarter-on-quarter growth unrevised at 0.3%, a trivial improvement on Q1's 0.2% gain.

24 October. 2016 Why are Households Running Such Large Bank Balances? (My Publications)

The U.S. household sector carries substantial gross debts, even after the sustained deleveraging since the crash of 2008. The gross debt-to-income ratio stood at 105.3% in the second quarter of this year, down from the 135% peak in late 2007 but still well above the 88% average recorded in the 1990s, which was not a decade of restraint on the part of consumers.

24 Sept. 2015 Capital goods orders recovering, but they won't rise every month (My Publications)

The plunge in capital spending in the oil business appears to be over, at least for now. Orders for non-defense capital goods, excluding aircraft, fell by 8.9% from their September peak to their February low, but they have since rebounded, as our first chart shows. We can't be certain that the sudden drop in core capex orders late last year was triggered by a rollover in oil companies' spending, but it is the most likely explanation, by far.

24 Sept. 2015 PMIs Point to Stable and Strong Eurozone GDP Growth in Q3 (My Publications)

PMI data yesterday provided some relief to anxious investors, despite a modest drop in the headline. The composite PMI in the Eurozone fell to 53.9 in September from 54.3 in August, driven by slight falls in both manufacturing and services. Assuming no major changes to the advance September reading--usually a fair bet--the PMI rose marginally in Q3, pointing to a continuation of the cyclical recovery.

24 October. 2016 The Eurozone needs better PR (My Publications)

The EZ doom-and-gloom crew has come crawling out of the woodwork again this year. Earlier this month, Nobel laureate Joseph Stiglitz told a German newspaper that Italy and other euro area countries likely will leave the currency union soon.

24 October. 2016 Tax Receipt Shortfall Casts Doubt on Economy's Resilience (My Publications)

Progress in reducing the budget deficit has ground to a virtual halt, despite the ongoing fiscal consolidation. Public sector net borrowing excluding public sector banks--PSNB ex.--was £10.6B in September, exceeding the £9.3B borrowed in the same month last year.

24 November. 2016 EZ PMIs Rise Further in November- The Outlook is Good for Q4 GDP (My Publications)

The PMIs are telling an increasingly upbeat story for the EZ economy in Q4. The composite PMI in the euro area rose to an 11-month high of 54.1 in November, from 53.3 in October. The uptick was driven by strong new business growth across all private sectors, and employment also increased in response to higher work backlogs.

24 November. 2016 The Fiscal Fetters Remain in Place, Despite the Looming Slowdown (My Publications)

The Chancellor's Autumn Statement dashed hopes that the fiscal consolidation will be paused while the economy struggles to adjust to the implications of Brexit. Admittedly, Mr. Hammond has another opportunity in the Spring Budget to reduce next year's fiscal tightening.

25 Apr. 2016 Brazil is Still Struggling, But Recent Data Are Encouraging (My Publications)

Financial market performance and economic survey data on the Brazilian economy have been better than many investors and commentators feared this year. The composite PMI has improved gradually since November last year, consumer sentiment has stabilized, and national business surveys have been less bleak.

25 Apr. 2016 Growth Will Rebound in Q2, But Brexit Fears Will Constrain the Fed (My Publications)

We are revising our forecast for Fed action this year, taking out two of the four hikes we had previously expected. We now look for the Fed to hike by 25bp in September and December, so the funds rate ends the year at 0.875%. The Fed's current forecast is also 0.875%, but the fed funds future shows 0.6%.

25 August 2017 Mexico's Mid-August Inflation Surprise is Nothing to Worry About (My Publications)

Mexico's inflation has been LatAm's odd one out over the last few years. In the decade through 2014, Mexico's inflation rate was broadly in sync with those of its regional fellows, as shown in our first chart.

25 August 2017 Sizzling Business Sentiment in France Signals Firm Q3 GDP (My Publications)

Yesterday's barrage of French business surveys contains hundreds of indicators, but its central story is comfortably simple.

25 April 2017 Mexico's IGAE Confirms a Surprisingly Firm Economy in Q1 (My Publications)

Economic activity in Mexico during the past few months has been stronger than most observers expected. Growth has certainly moderated from the relatively strong pace recorded during the second half of last year, but data for January and February show that it is still quite strong.

25 April 2017 Are Further Tax Rises After the Election Inevitable? (My Publications)

The Prime Minister's refusal last week to reaffirm her party's 2015 election pledge not to raise income tax, National Insurance or VAT has fuelled speculation that taxes will rise if the Conservatives are re-elected on June 8. Admittedly, Mrs. May asserted that her party "believes in lower taxes", and the tax pledge s till might appear in the Conservatives' manifesto, which won't be published for a few weeks.

25 Apr. 2016 Stable, but Weak, Cyclical Upturn to Continue in the EZ Economy (My Publications)

Last week's advance PMI data suggest that economic activity in the Eurozone was stable at the beginning of Q2. The composite EZ PMI fell trivially to 53.0 in April, from 53.1 in March, because a dip in manufacturing offset a small rise in the services index.

25 Apr. Preliminary GDP Data to Confirm Q1 Slowdown (My Publications)

The preliminary estimate of first quarter GDP likely will confirm that the economic recovery lost considerable pace in early 2016. Bedlam in financial markets in January and business fears over the E.U. referendum are partly responsible for the slowdown. The deceleration, however, also reflects tighter fiscal policy, uncompetitive exports, and the economy running into supply-side constraints.

26 June 2017 Equity Markets will Worry if EZ PMIs Fall Further in Q3 (My Publications)

The Eurozone PMIs stumbled at the end of Q2. The composite index slipped to a five-month low of 55.7 in June, from 56.8 in May, constrained by a fall in the services index. This offset a marginal rise in the manufacturing index to a new cyclical high. The dip in the headline does not alter the survey's upbeat short- term outlook for the economy.

26 June 2017 Japan Surprises on the Upside as the Economy Accelerates into Q2 (My Publications)

Japanese data continue to come in strongly for the second quarter. The manufacturing PMI points to continued sturdy growth, despite the headline index dipping to 52.0 in June from 53.1 in May. The average for Q2 overall was 52.6, almost unchanged from Q1's 52.8, signalling that manufacturing output growth has maintained its recent rate of growth.

27 September. 2016 Jobs Seen as Plentiful, but Payroll Gains Will Remain Low (My Publications)

In contrast to surveys of manufacturing activity and sentiment, the Conference Board's measure of consumer confidence rose sharply in August, hitting an 11-month high. People were more upbeat about both the current state of the economy and the outlook, with the improving job market key to their optimism. The proportion of respondent believing that jobs are "plentiful" rose to 26%, the highest level in nine years.

28 Apr. 2015 Confidence is high enough to support strong Q2 and Q3 spending (My Publications)

The expectations components of both the Michigan and Conference Board measures of consumers' confidence have risen sharply since gasoline prices rolled over.

28 Apr. 2015 Too Far, Too Fast For Eurozone Equity Markets since October? (My Publications)

QE and a gradually strengthening economy will remain positive catalysts for equities in the euro area this year. But with the MSCI EU ex -UK up almost 24% in the first quarter, the best quarterly performance since Q4 1999, the question is whether the good news has already been priced in.

27 September. 2016 Current Account Improving in Brazil, But Momentum is Fading (My Publications)

Brazil's external accounts have recovered dramatically this year, and we expect a further improvement--albeit at a much slower pace--in the fourth quarter. The steep depreciation of the BRL last year, and the improving terms of trade due to the gradual recovery in commodity prices, drove the decline in the current account deficit in the first half.

27 September 2016 The Surging IFO Points to a Resilient German Economy in Q3 (My Publications)

Yesterday's IFO survey in Germany was a big relief for markets, in light of recent soft data. The main business climate index jumped to 109.5 in September, from 106.3 in August, the biggest month-to-month increase since 2010.

27 October. 2016 GDP Set to Exceed the Consensus in Q3, But Underwhelm Thereafter (My Publications)

Today's preliminary estimate of Q3 GDP looks set to indicate that the Brexit vote has had little detrimental impact on the economy so far.

27 September 2016 Housing Market to Remain Fragile Deep into Next Year (My Publications)

The further decline in mortgage approvals in August shows that housing market activity remains very subdued. The recent fall in mortgage rates likely will prop up demand soon, but the poor outlook for households' real incomes suggests that both activity and prices will revive only modestly over the next year.

28 Apr. 2016 Eurozone Real Narrow Money Growth Continues to Slow (My Publications)

Monetary dynamics in the Eurozone were virtually unchanged last month. M3 growth rose trivially to 5.0% year-over-year in March from a revised 4.9% in February. It was lifted by stronger growth in medium-term deposits and issuance of short-term debt.

28 Apr. 2016 Global Risks Gone, but the Fed is Still Relaxed About Inflation Risk (My Publications)

The disappearance from the FOMC statement of any reference to global risks, which first appeared back in September, was both surprising and, in the context of this cautious Fed, quite bold. After all, one bad month in global markets or a reversal of the jump in the latest Chinese PMI surveys presumably would force the Fed quickly to reinstate the global get-out clause. So, why drop it now?

28 April 2017 The Economy Appears to have Stalled in Q1, but Q2 Will be Better (My Publications)

Whatever number the BEA publishes this morning for first quarter GDP growth -- we expect zero -- you probably should add about one percentage point to correct for the persistent seasonal adjustment problem which has plagued the data for many years. Reported first quarter growth has been weaker than the average for the preceding three quarters in 21 of the 31 years since 1985 -- and in eight of the past 10 years.

28 August 2017 Expect a Correction in the July Trade Data, but Trends are Favorable (My Publications)

Net foreign trade made a positive contribution of 0.2 percentage points to GDP growth in the second quarter, matching the Q1 performance.

28 August. 2015 Another Month, Another Bullish Money Supply Report in the EZ (My Publications)

Yesterday's money supply report provided further relief for investors doubtful over the cyclical recovery following the market turmoil. Broad money growth, M3, accelerated to 5.3% year-over-year in July, up from 4.9% in June, and within touching distance of a new post-crisis high. Narrow money continued to surge too, rising 12.1% year-over-year, up from 11.1% in June, sending a bullish message on the Eurozone economy.

28 April 2017 The ECB is Happier about the Economy, But not Inflation (My Publications)

Yesterday's ECB meeting painted a picture of a central bank in wait-and-see mode. The main refinancing and deposit rates were kept at 0.00% and -0.4% respectively, and the marginal lending facility rate also was unchanged at 0.25%.

28 April 2017 Preliminary GDP Estimate Likely to Reveal Q1 Slowdown (My Publications)

The preliminary estimate of Q1 GDP looks set to show that the economy started 2017 on a weak footing. We share the consensus view that quarter-on-quarter GDP growth slowed to 0.4%, from 0.7% in Q4.

28 Apr. Don't Pin Your Hopes on a Post-Referendum Rebound (My Publications)

The slowdown in GDP growth in Q1 reflects more than just Brexit risk. The intensifying fiscal squeeze, the uncompetitiveness of U.K. exports, and the lack of spare labour suggest that the U.K.'s recovery now is stuck in a lower gear.

28 April 2017 Current Account in Brazil Still Improving, But not for Long (My Publications)

Brazil's recovery has been steady in recent months, and Q1 likely will mark the end of the recession. The gradual recovery of the industrial and agricultural sectors has been the highlight, thanks to improving external demand, the lagged effect of the more competitive BRL, and the more stable political situation, which has boosted sentiment.

27 October. 2016 Core Capex Orders Set for Third Straight Gain as Oil Hit Fades? (My Publications)

The headline durable goods orders number for October, due today, likely will be depressed by falling aircraft orders, both civilian and military. Boeing reported orders for 55 civilian aircraft in September, compared to only three in August, but a hefty adverse swing in the seasonal factor will translate that into a small seasonally adjusted decline.

27 October. 2016 Consumers' Spending in Germany will Continue to Slow, Modestly (My Publications)

Yesterday's consumer confidence report in Germany was soft, in contrast to surging business sentiment data earlier in the week.

27 March 2017 Could the MPC Adopt a "One and Done" Hike Strategy? (My Publications)

A series of events have forced markets and analysts to re-evaluate their assumption that Bank Rate will remain on hold throughout 2017. First, the minutes of the MPC's meeting had a hawkish tilt.

27 March 2017 Eurozone PMI Data are Sizzling, but can they be Trusted? (My Publications)

Friday's advance Eurozone PMI reports capped a fine quarter for the survey. The composite PMI jumped to a 80-month high of 56.7 in March, from 56.1 in February, rising to a cyclical high over Q1 as a whole.

27 March 2017 Mexico - Under Short-Term Inflation Pressures, and Hoping for Growth (My Publications)

The balance of risks to activity in Mexico this year is still tilted to the downside, even though recent data have been mixed. Key indicators show that the manufacturing sector is gathering strength on the back of lagged effect of the MXN's sell-off last year, and the improving U.S. economy.

27 March 2017 Stronger Global Growth set to Boost U.S. Export Performance (My Publications)

It has been difficult to be an optimist about U.S. international trade performance in recent years. The year-over-year growth rate of real exports of goods and services hasn't breached 2% in a single quarter for two years.

27 Mar. 2015 No Hit from Oil Sector's Troubles Yet - Gains Elsewhere Offsetting? (My Publications)

We argued in the Monitor yesterday that the plunge in capital spending on equipment in the oil sector could cost about 300K jobs over the course of this year. Adding in the potential hit from falling spending on structures, which likely will occur over a longer period, given the lead times in the construction process, the payroll hit this year could easily be 500K, or just over 40K per month.

27 Mar. 2015 Banxico Still Eyeing a Rate Hike After the Fed Moves in June (My Publications)

This week's economic data for the Mexican economy have been encouraging, especially for Banxico, which left its main interest rate unchanged yesterday at 3.0%. Inflation remained on target for the second consecutive month in the first half of February, and the closely-watched IGAE economic activity index--a monthly proxy for GDP--continued to grow at a relatively solid pace, despite the big hit from lower oil prices.

27 Mar. 2015 Credit Growth is Improving, But the Periphery is Being Left Behind (My Publications)

Money supply data continue to support the continuation of cyclical recovery in the Eurozone. M3 growth accelerated to 4.0% year-over-year in February from a revised 3.7% in January. Revisions, however, mean that momentum in the beginning of the year was not as solid as we thought.

27 May. 2015 After the Surge - A Positive Trend in EZ Household Consumption? (My Publications)

Data today will likely show that consumer sentiment in the Eurozone remains firm. In Germany, we expect a slight dip in the advance headline GFK confidence index to 9.8 in June, from an all-time high of 10.1 in May.

27 May. 2015 Mexico Set for Gradual Improvement After Weak Q1? (My Publications)

Mexico's external accounts remain solid, despite adverse global conditions over the past year. The current account decreased to USD9.5B, or 3.2% of GDP, in the first quarter, just down from 3.3% a year earlier. Shortfalls of USD10.3B in the income account and USD4.7B in goods and services--mostly the latter--were again the key driver of the overall deficit.

27 Oct. 2015 Are the Foundations of the Recovery in House Prices Secure? (My Publications)

House prices look set for another growth spurt, pushing the house price-to-earnings ratio--the most widely used measure of valuation sustainability--close to levels seen shortly before the late-2000s crash. But we don't place much store by the price-to-earnings ratio. Better, more reliable indicators suggest that a higher level of house prices will prove sustainable.

27 Oct. 2015 Capital Goods Orders are Stabilizing, at Least - Oil Hit Fading (My Publications)

The durable goods numbers were among the first short-term indicators to warn clearly of the hit to manufacturing from the rollover in oil sector capex, which began last fall. The trend in core capital goods orders was rising strongly before oil firms began to cut back, with the year-over-year rate peaking at 11.9% in September. Leading capex indicators in the small business sector remained quite robust, but just nine months later, core capex orders were down 6.4% year-over-year, following annualized declines of more than 14% in both the fourth quarter of 2014 and the first quarter of this year.

27 Oct. 2015 Upbeat IFO Survey, Despite Dip in Headline Business Climate Index (My Publications)

Economic sentiment in the Eurozone's largest economy stayed solid at the start of the fourth quarter, despite subdued manufacturing and poor investor sentiment. The headline IFO business climate index fell slightly to 108.2 in October from 108.5 in September, due to a fall in the current assessment index. The expectations index rose, though, to 103.8 from 103.5 last month pointing to a resilient outlook for businesses and solid GDP growth in coming quarters.

27 May. 2016 Mr. Temer Starts to Deliver - Fiscal Measures are Positive, Overall (My Publications)

Recent political and economic developments in Brazil make us more confidence in our forecast of a gradual recovery. On Wednesday, interim President Michel Temer scored his first victory in Congress, winning approval for his request to raise this year's budget target to a more realistic level. Under the new target, Brazil's government plans to run a budget gap, before interest, of about 2.7% of GDP this year.

27 May. 2016 June, July, or September: Evaluating the Fed's Options (My Publications)

After a busy week of data, and a holiday weekend ahead, it's worth stepping back a bit and evaluating the arguments over the timing of the next Fed hike. The first question, though, is whether the data will support action, on the Fed's own terms. The April FOMC minutes said: "Most participants judged that if incoming data were consistent with economic growth picking up in the second quarter, labor market conditions continuing to strengthen, and inflation making progress toward the Committee's 2 percent objective, then it likely would be appropriate for the Committee to increase the target range for the federal funds rate in June".

27 May. 2015 Seasonal Biases Set to Lead to GDP Growth Restatement (My Publications)

The news that the seasonal adjustments in the GDP numbers are even less reliable than previously thought means the Fed likely will put even greater emphasis on the labor market when pondering when to begin raising rates. A cost-push view of the inflation process necessarily centers on the labor data, but every FOMC statement begins with an assessment of the overall pace of growth.

27 May. 2016 French Consumers are in Good Shape, but Q2 Spending Will Slow (My Publications)

We think today's consumer sentiment survey in France will show that the headline index was unchanged at 94 in May. The survey's forward looking components have weakened modestly in recent months, due to declines in households' outlook for their financial situation and standard of living in the coming 12 months.

28 August. 2015 August Payrolls Will Support Fed Inaction - Unemployment Won't (My Publications)

We argued yesterday that the August payroll number is unlikely to be a blockbuster, thanks to a combination of problems with the birth/death model and the strong tendency for this month's jobs number to be initially under-reported and then revised substantially higher. But these arguments don't apply to the unemployment rate, which is derived from the separate household survey.

28 August. 2015 Fed Delay Until December Will Be Positive For LatAm Markets - Just (My Publications)

Multiple factors have shaken LatAm financial markets this week. China's market turmoil, commodity price oscillations, currency volatility, and political mayhem in every corner of the region, have all conspired against markets. But market chaos has also driven some central banks to rethink their monetary policy plans. For EM, in particular for LatAm, the stance of the Federal Reserve is key, given the region's close ties to the U.S., and the dollar.

28 June. 2016 New Government in Spain Will be Given Time to Cut its Deficit (My Publications)

okThe weekend's election result in Spain provided relief for investors anxiously looking for another "surprise." Exit polls on Sunday showed a big majority for the anti-establishment party Podemos, but in the end Spanish voters opted for safety. The incumbent Partido Popular, PP, was the election's big winner compared with the elections six months ago, gaining 15 seats.

28 June. 2016 The Case for Stronger U.S. Economic Growth is Still Robust (My Publications)

Difficult though it is to tear ourselves away from Britain's political and economic train-wreck, morbid fascination is no substitute for economic analysis. The key point here is that our case for stronger growth in the U.S. over the next year is not much changed by events in Europe.

28 June. 2016 Will Higher Inflation Keep Further Monetary Easing at Bay? (My Publications)

The Chancellor indicated yesterday that the current fiscal plans--which set out a 1% of GDP reduction in the structural budget deficit this year--will remain in place until a new Prime Minister is chosen by September 2. So for now, the burden of leaning against the imminent downturn is on the MPC's shoulders.

28 June 2017 Inflation Forecast Revisions in August won't Force the MPC's Hand (My Publications)

The minutes of the MPC's meeting in June indicated that several members' patience for tolerating for above-target inflation is wearing thin.

28 June 2017 Mexico's Trade Balance Stalled in May, but Trend Remains Positive (My Publications)

The upturn in Mexico's trade balance in recent months stalled in May, but the underlying trend is still improving. Data yesterday showed that the seasonally adjusted deficit rose to USD700M in May, after a USD15M gap in April. Imports rose 2.9% month-to-month, offsetting a mere 0.7% increase in exports.

28 June 2017 Chinese Profits Growth to Decelerate, That's a Good Thing (My Publications)

Chinese industrial profits growth rose to 16.7% year-on-year in May, from 14.0% in April. But this headline is highly misleading. Profits growth data are about as cyclical as they come so taking one point in the year and looking back 12 months is very arbitrary. Moreover, the data are very volatile over short periods.

28 June 2017 ISM Survey Suggests May Trade Deficit to Drop Sharply (My Publications)

The April international trade numbers were startlingly, and surprisingly, horrible. The deficit in trade in goods leaped by $6.2B -- the biggest one-month jump in two years -- to $67.1B, though the headline damage was limited by a sharp narrowing in the oil deficit, thanks to lower prices, and a rebound in the aircraft surplus.

28 March 2017 Full-Scale Tax Reform Likely is Dead (My Publications)

The failure of House Republicans to support Speaker Ryan's healthcare bill has laid bare the splits within the Republican party. The fissures weren't hard to see even before last week's debacle but the equity market has appeared determined since November to believe that all the earnings-friendly elements of Mr. Trump's and Mr. Ryan's agendas would be implemented with the minimum of fuss.

28 March 2017 Andes' Countries Hit by Temporary Shocks, Monetary Policy to Help (My Publications)

Recent data have confirmed that Colombian economic activity is still fragile, and that downside risks increased in Q1 as oil prices hav e slipped. The ISE economic activity index rose just 1.0% year-over-year in January, down from a 1.6% average gain in Q4.

28 November. 2016 The Housing Slowdown Next Year Will be Offset by Fiscal Easing (My Publications)

We have been asked how we can justify raising our growth forecasts but at the same time arguing that the housing market is set to weaken quite dramatically, thanks to the clear downshift in mortgage applications in recent months. Applications peaked back in June, so this is not just a story about the post-election rise in mortgage rates.

28 November. 2016 Banxico's Balancing Act is Becoming Harder and More Risky (My Publications)

Banxico's decisions throughout the past year have been guided by external forces, dominated by the persistent decline of the MXN against the USD and its potential impact on inflation. The MXN has fallen by almost 17% year-to-date and has dropped by an eye-watering 37% since 2014.

28 November. 2016 GDP Won't Sustain its Recent Momentum Next Year (My Publications)

The second estimate of Q3 GDP last week confirmed that the Brexit vote didn't immediately drain momentum from the economic recovery. But it is extremely difficult to see how growth will remain robust next year, when high inflation will cripple consumers and the impact of the decline in investment intentions will be felt.

28 May. 2015 The Oil Hit Matters for Capex, but Not for the Labor Market (My Publications)

We argued in the Monitor yesterday that the very low and declining level of jobless claims is a good indicator that businesses were not much bothered by the slowdown in the pace of economic growth in the first quarter. The numbers also help illustrate another key point when thinking about the current state of the economy and, in particular, the rollover in the oil business.

28 May. 2015 Italy Finally Exits Recession, But Will Remain an Underperformer (My Publications)

We will be paying special attention today to the EC sentiment survey for Italy, where the headline index has climbed steadily so far this year. It was unchanged at an eight-year high of 106.1 in April, and even if it fell slightly in May--we expect a dip to 105.0--it still points to an upturn in economic growth.

28 March 2017 Could a Rebounding Eurozone Prevent a U.K. Slowdown? (My Publications)

Business surveys coming out of the Eurozone have been remarkably strong recently. The composite PMI for the Eurozone jumped to 56.7 in March--its highest level since April 2011--from 56.1 in February. Germany's IFO business climate index leaped to a 67-month high in March.

28 March 2017 EZ Money Supply Hit by Non-M1 Components in February (My Publications)

Momentum in the euro area's money supply slowed last month. M3 growth dipped to 4.7% year-over-year in February, from a downwardly-revised 4.8% in January. The headline was mainly constrained by the broad money components. The stock of repurchase agreements slumped 24.3% year-over-year and growth in money market fund shares also slowed sharply.

28 June 2017 A Difficult Balancing Act for Mr. Draghi on Growth and Inflation (My Publications)

Mr. Draghi's speech yesterday in Portugal, at the ECB forum on Central Banking, pushed the euro and EZ government bond yields higher. The markets' hawkish interpretation was linked to the president's comment that "The threat of deflation is gone and reflationary forces are at play."

28 July. 2016 EZ M1 Growth Slips Further, Signalling Lower Growth in 2017 (My Publications)

The headline in yesterday's EZ money supply report gave the illusion that monetary conditions are stable, but the details tell a different story. M3 growth accelerated marginally to 5.0% year-over-year in June, from 4.9%, but momentum in narrow money fell further. M1 growth slowed to 8.5% year-over-year, from 9.0% in May due to a fall in overnight deposits and currency in circulation.

28 Jan. 2015 Economic Momentum Means no Easing in Mexico this Year (My Publications)

Mexico's central bank, Banxico, will hold its first monetary policy meeting of this year tomorrow. It will break with tradition, holding the meeting on Thursday at 1:00 p.m, local time, instead of the previous 9:00 a.m slot.

28 Jan. 2015 QE will boost equities this year, but valuations will be stretched to the extreme (My Publications)

The ECB will receive most of the credit for the recent gain in stock markets, but the main leading indicator for the stock market, excess liquidity, was already turning up late last year. With the MSCI EU ex-UK up 21%, in euro terms, since October, a lot is already priced in, but in the medium term the outlook is upbeat, and we look for further gains this year.

28 Jan. 2015 What Happened to December Durable Goods Orders? (My Publications)

We are pretty confident that the reported 3.4% drop in durable goods orders in December, which so spooked the markets yesterday, didn't actually happen.

28 February 2017 Should the ESI's Upbeat Growth Signal be Trusted? (My Publications)

The E.C.'s Economic Sentiment Indicator for the U.K., released yesterday, painted an upbeat picture of the economy's recent performance. The ESI picked up to 109.4 in February from 107.1 in January; its average level since 1990 is 100. February's reading was the highest since December 2015, and it slightly exceeded the E.U.'s average of 108.9.

28 February 2017 What Will the President say About Taxes and Spending? (My Publications)

It seems pretty clear from press reports that the White House budget, which reportedly will be released March 14, will propose substantial increases in defense spending, deep cuts to discretionary non- defense spending, and no substantive changes to entitlement programs. None of this will come as a surprise.

28 February 2017 Colombia's Economy is Struggling, but Further Easing is Coming (My Publications)

The Colombian economy was relatively resilient at the end of last year, but economic reports released during the last few weeks indicate that growth is still fragile, and that downside risks have increased. Real GDP rose 1.0% quarter-on-quarter in Q4, pushing the year-over-year rate up to 1.6% from 1.2% in Q3.

28 February 2017 The Eurozone Business Cycle Upturn is Resilient and Robust (My Publications)

Money supply dynamics in the Eurozone continue to signal a solid outlook for the economy. Headline M3 growth eased marginally to 4.9% year-over-year in January, from 5.0% in December; the dip was due to slowing narrow money growth, falling to 8.4% from 8.8% the month before. The details of the M1 data, however, showed that the headline chiefly was hit by slowing growth in deposits by insurance and pension funds.

28 Jan. 2016 FOMC is Focussed on the Labor Market - Global Events Matter Less (My Publications)

The FOMC flagged recent market developments as a source of risk to the U.S. economy yesterday, unsurprisingly, but didn't go overboard: "The Committee is closely monitoring global economic and financial developments and is assessing their implications for the labor market and inflation, and for the balance of risks to the outlook."

28 Jan. 2016 Italy Gets its "Bad Bank," but Implementation Looks Difficult (My Publications)

Reports yesterday indicated that a deal has finally been struck between the European Commission and the Italian government to start dealing with bad loans in the banking system. The initial details suggest the government will be allowed to guarantee senior tranches on non-performing loans, supposedly making them easier to sell to private investors. In order to avoid burdening government finances as part of the sales--not allowed under the new banking union rules--the idea is to price the guarantees based on the credit risk of similar loans.

28 July. 2015 Unassailable Bullish Message from M1 Growth in the Eurozone (My Publications)

Money supply data continue to send a bullish message on the euro area economy. Broad money growth was unchanged at 5.0% year-over-year in June, but M1 growth surged to 11.8%, from 11.2% in May. Combined with low inflation, real M1--the best leading indicator in the Eurozone--indicates a surge in GDP growth on par with previous record business cycle upturns in 1999, 2005-06 and 2009-10.

28 July. 2016 Acceleration of Q2 GDP Won't Have Much Bearing on Stimulus Debate (My Publications)

Taken at face value, the preliminary estimate of Q2 GDP suggests that the economic recovery weathered Brexit risk well. But growth received support from some unsustainable sources, and also probably was boosted by a calendar quirk. Meanwhile, with few firms or consumers expecting a vote for Brexit prior to the referendum, Q2's brisk growth tells us little about how well the economy will cope in the current climate of heightened uncertainty.

28 July 2017 The Eurozone is in fine form, as we start our summer break (My Publications)

This is the final report before your scribe disappears into the Scottish Highlands for a few weeks, and we are leaving you with a Eurozone economy in fine form. The calendar will be relatively light in our absence and will tell us what we already know; namely that the euro area economy maintained its strong momentum in Q2.

28 July 2017 The Downturn in Housing Market Activity has Further to Run (My Publications)

Equity prices for companies dependent on the U.K.'s residential property market tumbled yesterday as several companies reported poor results for the first half of 2017. Most companies blamed a decline in housing transactions for falling profits.

28 Jan. 2016 Preliminary GDP Likely to Provide Another Downside Surprise (My Publications)

We expect today's preliminary estimate of Q4 GDP growth to surprise the consensus to the downside, underscoring our view that the economic recovery has shifted down to a much slower gear.

28 July 2017 Korean GDP and Chinese Pro ts Con rm China is Slowing (My Publications)

Korean real GDP growth slumped in Q2 to 0.6% quarter-on-quarter, from 1.1% in Q1, as both the main drivers--construction and exports--ran out of steam simultaneously. Construction investment grew by 1.0%, sharply slower than the 6.8% in Q1 and contributing just 0.2% to GDP growth in Q2, a turnaround from the 1.1 percentage point contribution in the first quarter.

27 June. 2016 Plunging Investment Will Be the Main Driver of the Brexit Downturn (My Publications)

The U.K.'s political situation is extremely fluid, so it would be risky automatically to assume that the U.K. is heading for Brexit. Although the Prime Minister has resigned, his attempt to hold out until October to begin the formal process of exiting the E.U. signals that he may be seeking to engineer a revised deal, or at least to force his successor to make the momentous decision of whether to trigger Article 50, to begin the leaving process.

27 June. 2016 Life After Brexit: LatAm Suffers Higher Volatility, But Will Survive (My Publications)

The U.K.'s unexpected decision to vote to leave the E.U. will have serious ramifications for the global economy, and LatAm economies are unlikely to emerge unscathed. It is very difficult to quantify the short-term effects due to the intricacies of the financial transmission channels into the real economy.

26 October. 2016 The German Economy Fired on All Cylinders at the Start of Q4 (My Publications)

Yesterday's IFO survey confirmed that the private business sector in Germany was off to a flying start in Q4. The headline business climate index rose to 110.5 in October, from 109.5 in September, lifted mainly by a rise in the expectations index to a 30-month high of 106.5.

26 October. 2016 Consumer Energy Price Rises Are in the Pipeline (My Publications)

Sharp falls in energy prices have been a boon for consumers, freeing up considerable funds for discretionary purchases. Domestic energy and motor fuel absorbed just 4.7% of consumers' spending in Q2, the lowest proportion for 12 years and well below the 6.7% recorded three years ago.

26 October. 2016 Soybean Exports Set to Hold Down the Trade Deficit, Again (My Publications)

Today's September international trade report will be the third to be distorted by hugely elevated soybean exports. The surge began in July, when soybean exports jumped by $3.6B--that's a 220% month-to-month increase--to $5.2B.

26 Oct. 2015 What Has to Happen for the Fed to Hike in December? (My Publications)

A rate hike from the Fed this week would be a gigantic surprise, and Yellen Fed has not, so far, been in the surprise business. It would be more accurate to describe the Fed's modus operandi as one of extreme caution, and raising rates when the fed funds future puts the odds of action at close to zero just does not fit the bill.

26 Oct. 2015 PMIs Point to Firm GDP Growth Ahead in the Eurozone (My Publications)

Friday's PMIs gave the first hint of Q4 growth in the Eurozone, and continue to tell a story of a stable cyclical recovery. The composite PMI in the Eurozone rose 54.0 in October from 53.6 in September, mainly due to a rise in the services index, to 54.2 from 53.7. Assuming the PMI remains unchanged over the remainder of the quarter, the survey indicates solid GDP growth of 0.4%-to-0.5% quarter-on-quarter in Q4.

26 Oct. 2015 Mexico's Private Consumption is the Key Driver of the Upswing (My Publications)

The tumultuous political and economic crises in Brazil continue to feed off each other, grabbing most of the LatAm headlines. Sentiment will remain depressed, and volatility and uncertainty will persist, hampering any real signs of stabilization in the near-term. The Pacific Alliance countries, by contrast, managed to grow at relatively solid rates during the first half of this year, after absorbing the hit from falling commodity prices.

26 Oct. 2015 MPC Can't Wait too Long After the U.S. Fed Raises Rates (My Publications)

Markets currently judge that U.K. interest rates will rise about six months after the first Fed hike. But the Bank of England seldom lagged this far behind in the past. Admittedly, the slowdown in the domestic economy that we expect will require the Monetary Policy Committee to be cautious. But wage and exchange rate pressures are likely to mean six months is the maximum period the MPC can wait before following the Fed's lead.

26 September 2016 Is the Markets' Pessimism About Long-Term Rates Warranted? (My Publications)

The bond market has become extremely pessimistic about the long-term economic outlook following Britain's vote to leave the EU. Forward rates imply that the gilt markets' expectation for official interest rates in 20 years' time has shifted down to just 2%, from 3% at the start of 2016.

26 September 2016 PMIs Point to Slower EZ GDP Growth, but Details are Confusing (My Publications)

Friday's PMI data in the Eurozone added to the evidence that GDP growth is slowing, after a cyclical peak last year. The composite PMI in the euro area slipped to a 21-month low of 52.6 in September, from 52.9 in August.

27 Apr. 2016 Breaking News: Bund Yields are Going Up, and Could Rise Further (My Publications)

On the face of it, the 25 basis points increase in 10-year German yields this month is modest. But the sell-off has reminded levered investors that trading benchmark securities in the Eurozone is not a one-way street. When yields are close to zero, investors also use leverage to enhance returns, and this increases volatility when the market turns.

27 Apr. 2016 FOMC Statement Today Likely to Offer Little to Rate Hawks (My Publications)

A rate hike today would be a surprise of monumental proportions, and the Yellen Fed is not in that business. What matters to markets, then, is the language the Fed uses to describe the soft-looking recent domestic economic data, the upturn in inflation, and, critically, policymakers' views of the extent of global risks.

27 Apr. 2016 Services Driving Mexico's Growth, Despite Many Obstacles (My Publications)

Mexico's National Institute of Statistics--INEGI-- will release preliminary GDP data for Q1 on Friday. We are expecting good news, despite the tough external and domestic environment. According to the economic activity index--a monthly proxy for GDP-- growth gained further momentum in Q1, based on data up to February.

27 Apr. 2015 Could higher inflation upset bunds in the second quarter? (My Publications)

Monitoring bond markets in the Eurozone has been like watching paint dry this year. Yields across fixed income markets in the euro area were already low going into QE, but they have been absolutely crushed as asset purchases began in February.

27 Apr. 2015 Accelerating high-wage job growth to lift hourly earnings? (My Publications)

We have argued for some time that the hourly earnings data, which take no account of changes in the mix of employment by industry or occupation, have been depressed over the past year by the relatively rapid growth of low-paid jobs.

26 September. 2016 Mexico's Consumers Spent Freely in July, But Momentum Is Slowing (My Publications)

Mexican consumers started the third quarter strongly, supporting our relatively upbeat view for the economy in the near term. Private consumption represents about 70% of Mexico's GDP, one of the consumption shares in the EM world, so the strength of spending is hugely important.

26 September. 2016 When Will Manufacturing Shake off the Summertime Blues (My Publications)

We're still no nearer to a definitive answer to the question of what went wrong in the manufacturing sector over the summer, when we expected to see things improving on the back of the rebound in activity in the mining sector, rising export orders and an end to the domestic inventory correction. Instead, the August surveys dropped, and September reports so far are, if anything, a bit worse.

26 Nov. 2015 The Chancellor Leaves the Fiscal Shackles Firmly in Place (My Publications)

The Chancellor used the Autumn Statement to shift the composition of the fiscal consolidation slightly away from spending cuts and towards tax hikes. But in overall macroeconomic terms, he changed little. The fiscal stance is still set to be extremely tight in 2016 and 2017, ensuring that the economic recovery will lose more momentum.

26 May. 2016 Favorable Post-Easter Seasonals Signal Upside Risk for April Orders (My Publications)

Another day, another couple of April reports likely to reverse March "weakness", triggered by the early Easter. We look for robust core durable goods and pending home sales reports, with the odds favoring consensus-beating numbers. In both cases, though, the noise-to-signal ratio is quite high, and we can't be certain the Easter seasonal unwind will be the dominant force in the April data.

26 June. 2015 The ECB Will Fight to Maintain "Normality" in EZ Bond Markets (My Publications)

The impasse between Greece and its creditors has roiled Eurozone bond markets, but the ECB is likely ready to restore calm, if necessary. We think a further widening of short-term interest rate spreads would especially worry the central bank, as it would represent a challenge to forward guidance. For now, spreads remain well below the average since the birth of the Eurozone, even after the latest increase.

26 Mar. 2015 How Far Will Capital Goods Orders Fall as the Oil Sector Shrinks? (My Publications)

The rollover in core capital goods orders in recent months has been startling. In the three months to February, compared to the previous three months, orders for non-defense capital goods fell at a 7.6% annualized rate.

26 Mar. 2015 Survey Data Point to a Recovery for German Investment in Q1 (My Publications)

The IFO survey released yesterday provides further evidence that the cyclical recovery in Germany's economy continued in the current quarter. The headline business climate index rose to 107.9 in March from 106.8 in February, lifted by increases in both the current assessments and expectations index.

26 June. 2015 Rapid Income Gains and Lower Saving Mean Strong H2 Spending (My Publications)

the past few observations make clear. Real spending jumped by 0.5% in March, rebounding after its weather-induced softness in February, before stalling again in April. Then, in May, the s urge in new auto sales to a nine-year high lifted total spending again, driving a 0.6% real increase.

26 June. 2015 Mexico's Economy Improves in April - Oil Distorts the Picture (My Publications)

The underlying state of the Mexican economy is still positive, despite recent signs of a modest slowdown. The IGAE economic activity index--a monthly proxy for GDP--rose 2.1% year-over-year in April, a relatively solid pace, but down from 2.8% in March, and 2.6% in Q1.

26 June 2017 Keep Calm and Carry On Expecting Further Inaction from the MPC (My Publications)

Mark Carney's assertion that "now is not yet the time to raise rates" fell on deaf ears last week. Markets are pricing-in a 20% chance that the MPC will increase Bank Rate at the next meeting on August 3, up from 10% just after the MPC's meeting on June 15, when three members voted to hike rates.

26 June 2017 Markets are Telling Themselves a Story, Shame it's a Fairytale (My Publications)

The core economic narrative in U.S. markets right now seems to run something like this: The pace of growth slowed in Q1, depressing the rate of payroll growth in the spring. As a result, the headline plunge in the unemployment rate is unlikely to persist and, even if it does, the wage pressures aren't a threat to the inflation outlook.

26 May 2017 First Quarter Growth Set to be Revised up, but Data are Very Flawed (My Publications)

We didn't believe the first estimate of Q1 GDP growth, 0.7%, and we won't believe today's second estimate, either. The data are riddled with distortions, most notably the long-standing problem of residual seasonality, which depressed the number by about one percentage point.

26 May 2017 The ECB is in a Trap of its Own Making in EZ Private Debt Markets (My Publications)

We have warned that the ECB' decision to add corporate bonds to QE would lead to unprecedented market distortions. Evidence of this is now abundantly clear. The central bank has bought €82B-worth of corporate bonds in the past 11 months, and now holds more than 6% of the market. Assuming the central bank continues its purchases until the middle of next year, it will end up owning 13%-to-14% of the whole Eurozone corporate bond market.

26 May. 2015 Is Core Inflation Really Rising, or are the Recent Gains Just Noise? (My Publications)

After four straight above-trend increases in the core CPI, you could be forgiven for thinking that something is afoot. It's still too soon, though to rush to judgment. The data show three previous streaks of 0.2%-or-bigger over four-month periods since the crash of 2008, and none of them were sustained.

26 May. 2016 EZ Short-Term Yields Could Rise Abruptly as Inflation Rebounds (My Publications)

Short-term interest rates in the Eurozone continue to imply that the ECB will lower rates further this year. Two-year yields have been stuck in a very tight range around -0.5% since March, indicating that investors expect the central bank again to reduce its deposit rate from its current level of -0.4%. This is not our base case, though, and we think that investors focused on deflation and a dovish ECB will be caught out by higher inflation.

26 May. 2015 BCB Stresses its Duty to Fight Inflation, Despite the Recession (My Publications)

Brazil's central bank is desperately trying to get a grip on inflation. It has raised the Selic rate by 225bp, to 13.25%, in just the last six months, and real rates now stand at a hefty 5.0%. And, at last, we are seeing tentative signs that policymakers and the government, after hiking rates and adjusting regulated prices, are making some headway.

26 May. 2015 All Eyes on the U.S. and the FOMC for Next Big Move in the Euro (My Publications)

The euro has so far defied the most bearish forecasters' predictions that it is on track for parity with the dollar. Currencies can disregard long-run parity conditions, however, for longer than most investors can hold positions.

26 May 2017 Mexican Consumption Will Slow as Tighter Financial Conditions Bite (My Publications)

Consumers' spending in Mexico was relatively resilient at the end of Q1, but we think it will slow in the second quarter. Data released this week showed that retail sales rose a strong-looking 6.1% year-over-year in March, well above market expectations, and up from 3.6% in February.

26 May 2017 Soft GDP Shows Sterling's Drop to be the Least Successful Ever (My Publications)

The second estimate of Q1 GDP made for grim reading. Quarter-on-quarter GDP growth was revised down to 0.2%--the joint-slowest rate since Q4 2012--from the preliminary estimate of 0.3%.

27 April 2017 How Much Further Can Mortgage Rates Fall? (My Publications)

Growth in households' disposable incomes has been supported in recent years by falling debt servicing costs. The proportion of households' incomes absorbed by interest payments fell to a record low of 4.5% in Q4 last year, down from 4.7% a year ago and a peak of 10% in 2008.

27 April 2017 The Path to Implementing Huge Tax Cuts Looks Insurmountably Steep (My Publications)

The tax plan released by the administration yesterday was so thoroughly leaked that it contained no real surprises. The border adjustment tax is dead -- not that we thought it would have passed the Senate in any event -- and the centerpiece is a proposed cut in the corporate income tax rate to 15% from 35%.

27 July 2017 GDP Growth Will Remain Weak in 2017, Keeping the MPC Inactive (My Publications)

GDP rose by 0.3% quarter-on-quarter in Q2, according to the ONS' preliminary estimate, confirming that the economy has fundamentally slowed since the Brexit vote. The modest growth has reduced further the already-small risk that the MPC will raise interest rates at its next meeting on August 3.

27 July 2017 Greece is Back in the Market, but the Timing is Not the Best (My Publications)

The strengthening EZ economy increasingly looks like the tide that lifts all boats. The Greek economy is still a laggard, but recent news hints at a brightening outlook. Last week, S&P affirmed the country's debt rating, but revised the outlook to "positive" from "stable."

27 July. 2015 PMIs Point to Stable GDP Growth, but EM Rout is Hurting Germany (My Publications)

The July Eurozone PMI survey echoed the message from consumer sentiment earlier of a mild dip in momentum going into Q3. The composite PMI in the euro area fell to 53.7, from 54.2 in June due mainly to a fall in the services index. Companies' own expectations for future business fell in the core, but the survey was conducted soon after the Greek referendum. Markit claims this didn't depress the data, but we are on alert for revisions to the headline and expectations next week, or a rebound next month.

27 July 2017 China's Reform Scorecard Part 2: Tax Revenues (My Publications)

In yesterday's Monitor, we outlined how the government's plans to allow more migrants to register in cities could help counterbalance the effects of aging and put a floor under medium-term property prices.

27 January 2017 Will Mr. Trump Single out Germany for its Large Trade Surplus? (My Publications)

The uncertainty over the new U.S. administration's economic policies new is clouding the outlook for the Eurozone economy. The combination of loose fiscal policy and tight monetary policy in the U.S. should be positive for the euro area economy, in theory. It points to accelerating U.S. growth--at least in the near term--wider interest rate differentials and a stronger dollar. In a " traditional" global macroeconomic model, this policy mix would lead to a wider U.S. trade deficit, boosting Eurozone exports.

27 January 2017 GDP Growth Will Slow This Year as Consumers Retrench (My Publications)

The preliminary estimate of GDP showed that the economy finished 2016 on a strong note. Output increased by 0.6% quarter-on-quarter, the same rate as in the previous two quarters. The year-over-year growth rate of GDP in 2016 as a whole--2.0%--was low by pre-crisis standards, but it likely puts the U.K. at the top of the G7 growth leaderboard. We cannot tell how well the economy would have performed had the U.K. not voted to leave the EU in June, but clearly the threat of Brexit has not loomed large over the economy.

27 January 2017 Trump's Plans Will Collide With Reality, But Mexico Will Suffer (My Publications)

U.S. President Trump on Wednesday signed an executive order aimed at delivering on his campaign pledge to build a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border. The executive order also includes measures to boost border patrol forces and increase the number of immigration enforcement officers. As previous U.S. presidents have discovered, however, signing an executive order is one thing and fulfilling it is something else. President Obama, for instance, signed an executive order to close the Guantanamo detention facility on his second day in office.

27 July. 2016 Can Fiscal Stimulus be a Silver Bullet for the Eurozone Economy? (My Publications)

Global economic growth continues to fall short of expectations, and the call for aggressive fiscal stimulus is growing in many countries. This is partly a function of the realisation that monetary policy has been stretched to a breaking point. But it is also because of record low interest rates, which offer governments a golden and cheap opportunity to kickstart the economy. One of the main arguments for stronger fiscal stimulus is based on classic Keynesian macroeconomic theory.

27 July. 2016 Firm Q2 GDP Unlikely to Signal Post-Referendum Resilience (My Publications)

The preliminary estimate of Q2 GDP, published today, likely will show that growth was immaterially different from Q1's 0.4% quarter-on-quarter rate. But this should not be interpreted as a sign that the economy will be able to shrug off the impact of last month's vote to leave the E.U.

27 June 2017 The Italian Job on Two Small Venetian Banks is a Good Start (My Publications)

The strengthening recovery in the euro area is proving to be a poisoned chalice for some of the region's most vulnerable banks. Earlier this month-- see our Monitor of June 8--Spain's Banco Populare was acquired by Banco Santander, and the bank's equity and junior credit holders were bailed-in as part of the deal.

27 June. 2016 A Post-Brexit EU is Weakened, But Not Destined for a Collapse (My Publications)

The ECB's statement following the panic on Friday was brief and offered few details. The central bank said that it is closely monitoring markets, and that it is ready to provide additional liquidity in both euros and foreign currency, if needed. It also said that it is in close coordination with other central banks.

27 June. 2016 Brexit Constrains Fed, but Limited U.S. Fallout Means December is Live (My Publications)

By the close on Friday, the initial reaction in U.S. markets to the U.K. Brexit vote could be characterized as a bad day at the office, but nothing worse. Not a meltdown, not a catastrophe, no exposure of suddenly dangerous fault lines.That's not to say all danger has passed, but the first hurdle has been overcome.

27 June 2017 Mexican Economic Growth Will be Sustained over the Second Half (My Publications)

Economic activity in Mexico during the past few months has been relatively resilient, as external and domestic threats appear to have diminished.

27 June 2017 Japanese Inflation to Hold up as Food Prices Counterbalance Energy (My Publications)

Japanese services price inflation edged down in May as the twin upside drivers of commodity price inflation and yen weakness began to lose steam. We expect wage costs to begin edging up in the second half but this will provide only a partial counterbalance.

27 June 2017 Flat Capex Orders won't Stop the Labor Market Tightening Further (My Publications)

The flat trend in core capital goods orders continued through May, according to yesterday's durable goods orders report. We are not surprised.

27 June 2017 Higher Interest Rates won't be Needed to Rein in Consumer Credit (My Publications)

Speculation has grown that the Bank of England will announce measures today to calm the recent strong growth in consumer credit, when it publishes its bi-annual Financial Stability Report.

27 January 2017 Q4 Growth Likely Hit by Foreign Trade, Temporarily (My Publications)

We expect to learn today that the economy expanded at a 1.7% rate in the fourth quarter. At least, that's our forecast, based on incomplete data, and revisions over time could easily push growth significantly away from this estimate. The inherent unreliability of the GDP numbers, which can be revised forever--literally--explains why the Fed puts so much more emphasis on the labor market data, which are volatile month-to-month but more trustworthy over longer periods and subject to much smaller revisions.

27 Jan. 2016 Will Mexico's Household Spending Remain the Bright Spot in 2016? (My Publications)

Mexico's economy continues to bring good news, despite the tough external environment for all EM economies. According to the economic activity index, a monthly proxy for GDP, growth gained further momentum in Q4. Activity rose 2.7% year-over-year in November, supported by stronger services activities, which expanded 0.3% month-to-month. The services sector has been the main driver of the current cycle, growing 3.8% year-over-year in November, bolstering our optimism about the domestic economy in the near-term.

27 Feb. 2015 M1 growth is sending a very bullish on the Eurozone economy (My Publications)

Economic data in the Eurozone are sending an increasingly upbeat message on the economy. Yesterday saw a barrage of numbers, but the most startling of them was the continued acceleration in the money supply.

27 Feb. 2015 Temporary Factors Distorting Inflation and Orders Data (My Publications)

The solid 0.2% increase in January's core CPI, coupled with the small upward revision to December, ought to offer a degree of comfort to anyone worried about European-style deflation pressures in the U.S.

27 February 2017 How Quickly Will Core Capital Goods Orders Rebound? (My Publications)

Orders for non-defense capital goods, excluding aircraft, have risen in six of the past seven months. In the fourth quarter, orders rose at a 4.7% annualized rate, in contrast to the 5.3% year-over-year plunge in the first half of the year.

27 Feb. 2015 External Positions Highlight The Brazil-Mexico Performance Gap (My Publications)

Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen's testimony this week reinforced our view that the first U.S. rate hike will be in June. The transition to higher U.S. rates will require an unpleasant adjustment in asset prices in some LatAm countries.

27 August. 2015 Mr. Praet's Dovish Comments Don't Signal Easing Next Week (My Publications)

ECB board member Peter Praet fired the first shot across the markets' bow yesterday following this week's turmoil. Speaking to journalists in Germany, Mr. Praet noted "increased downside risk of achieving a sustainable inflation path towards 2%," and assured investors the current QE program is fully flexible, and can be readily adjusted in response to an adverse development in inflation expectations. We don't think, though, this is a pre -cursor for additional easing at next week's ECB meeting.

27 April 2017 Today's ECB Meeting Will be a Snoozer for Markets (My Publications)

It's always dangerous when risk assets rally strongly into an ECB meeting, but we doubt that investors have much to fear from today's session in Frankfurt. We think the central bank will leave its main refinancing and deposit rates at 0.00% and -0.4% respectively.

27 August. 2015 Dudley, Channelling Yellen, Signals September is (Nearly) Out (My Publications)

It's hard to imagine that Fed Vice-Chair Dudley would choose to say yesterday that he finds the case for a September rate hike "less compelling than it was a few weeks ago" without having had a chat beforehand with Chair Yellen. Mr. Dudley pointed out that the case "could become more compelling by the time of the meeting", depending on the data and the markets, but he also argued that developments in markets and overseas economies can "impinge" on the U.S., and that there "...still appears to be excess slack in the labor market". These ideas, especially on the labor market but also on the impact of events overseas, are not shared by the hawks, but we can't imagine Mr. Dudley disagreeing in public with Dr. Yellen. We have to assume these are her views too.

27 February 2017 Will the Surge in Equity Prices Support Consumption? (My Publications)

Last week's GDP figures illustrated that the economy is extremely vulnerable to a slowdown in households' spending. Our chart of the week, on page three, shows that consumers were alone in making a significant positive contribution to GDP growth last year.

27 February 2017 A Big Difference Between Today's French Yield Panic and 2012 (My Publications)

This remains a tumultuous time for EZ bond investors. The twists and turns of the French presidential election campaign continue to shove markets around. Marine Le Pen's steady rise in thepolls has pushed French yields higher this year.

27 Jan. 2016 Remortgaging Won't Be So Supportive of Growth This Year (My Publications)

The fall in the cost of new secured credit has played a key role in reinvigorating the economy over the last couple of years. Mortgage interest payments were 3.7% lower in Q3 than in the same quarter a year previously, even though the stock of secured debt was 2% larger. As a result, the percentage of household disposable incomes taken up by mortgage interest payments fell to 4.8% in the third quarter of 2015--the lowest proportion since records began in 1987--from 5.2% a year before.

27 Jan. 2016 The Curious Case of Missing Equity Earnings in the Eurozone (My Publications)

Eurozone investors continue to look to the ECB as the main reason to justify a constructive stance on the equity market. Last week, the central bank all but promised additional easing in March, but the soothing words by Mr. Draghi have, so far, given only a limited lift to equities. Easy monetary policy has partly been offset by external risks, in the form of fears over slow growth in China, and the risk of low oil prices sparking a wave of corporate defaults. But uncertainty over earnings is another story we frequently hear from disappointed equity investors. We continue to think that QE and ZIRP offer powerful support for equity valuations in the Eurozone, but weak earnings are a key missing link in the story.

27 Jan. 2016 FOMC Likely to Warn Again of External Risks, and do... Nothing (My Publications)

Today's FOMC announcement will be something of a non-event. Rates were never likely to rise immediately after December's hike, and the weakness of global equity markets means the chance of a further tightening today is zero.

27 Jan. 2015 Falling Oil Sector Capex a Wild Card for Durable Goods Orders (My Publications)

We would like to be able to argue with confidence that today's December durable goods orders report will show core capital goods orders rebounding after three straight declines, totalling 3.4%.

27 February 2017 Banxico Faces Real Pressures, but bad News is Priced-In to the MXN (My Publications)

Mexico's policymakers are battling two opposing forces. First, inflation pressures are rising, on the back of the one-time increase in petrol prices and the lagged effect of the MXN's sell-off in Q4. These factors are pushing short-term inflation expectations higher, even though the MXN has remained relatively stable since President Trump took office and has risen by about 6% against the USD year-to-date.

27 Jan. 2015 Don't Panic over Greece, a solution between the Troika and Syriza will be found (My Publications)

The landslide victory by anti-austerity party Syriza in Greece this weekend will increase uncertainty in coming months. The coalition between Syriza and the Independent Greeks will prove a tough negotiating partner for the EU as both parties are strongly in favor of pushing the Troika to significant concessions on any future bailout terms this year.

24 February 2017 Is Sterling's Depreciation a Blessing or a Curse for Profits? (My Publications)

This week's GDP figures showed that firms invested only sparingly in 2016, but their financial fortunes have been bolstered by a recovery in profits. The gross operating surplus of all firms rose by 4.5% quarter-on-quarter in Q4, the biggest increase for 11 quarters. This pushed the share of GDP absorbed by profits up to 21.3%, just above its 60-year average of 21.2%.

24 February 2017 German Economy did Well in Q4, but What Happened to Net Trade? (My Publications)

Yesterday's detailed German GDP report raised more questions than it answered. The headline confirmed that growth accelerated to 0.4% quarteron- quarter in Q4, from 0.1% in Q3, leaving the year-over- year rate unchanged at 1.7%.

21 November. 2016 How Vulnerable are the Public Finances to Rising Gilt Yields? (My Publications)

Gilt yields have shot up over the last couple of months, despite ongoing bond purchases authorised by the MPC in August. Ten-year yields closed last week at 1.47%, in line with the average in the first half of 2016.

21 November. 2016 Is Germany Exploiting the Rest of the EZ? (My Publications)

Data on Friday showed that the EZ current account surplus fell to €25.3B in September, from a revised €29.2B in August. The trade and services surpluses were unchanged, but the income balance slipped after rising in the previous months.

21 November. 2016 Soft Chilean Data Likely Leading to Rate Cuts Next Year (My Publications)

Chile's central bank left rates unchanged at 3.5% last Thursday, as expected, and maintained its neutral tone. Inflation pressures are easing, economic activity remains sluggish and global risks have increased.

21 November. 2016 The Inflation Threat from Wages is Rising (My Publications)

Last week, the Atlanta Fed updated its median hourly earnings series with new October data, showing wage growth accelerating to an eight-year high of 3.9%. That's a full percentage point higher than the increase in this measure of wages in the year to October 2015, and it follows a spring and summer during which wage growth appeared to be topping-out at just under 3½%.

21 May. 2015 Greece Needs EU Bailout Funds to Pay the IMF Next Month (My Publications)

The day of reckoning in Greece has been continuously postponed in the past three months, but government officials told national TV yesterday that the country cannot meet its IMF payment of €300M June 5th, without a deal with the EU. The urgency was echoed by the joint statement earlier this week by German Chancellor Merkel and French President Hollande that Greece has until the end of this month to reach a deal.

21 March 2017 The Debt Ceiling is Back, but no Crisis Likely Until the Fall (My Publications)

The federal debt ceiling was re-imposed last week, with no fanfare, and no reaction in the markets. All eyes were focussed instead on the Fed's rate hike and Chair Yellen's press conference.

21 March 2017 Will Investors Shorting Sterling Remain Frustrated? (My Publications)

Speculators who have sold sterling over the last six months have been frustrated. Investors have been overwhelmingly net short sterling, but the pound has hovered between $1.20 and $1.25, as our first chart shows. Undeterred, investors increased their net short positions last week to 107K contracts-- the most since records began in 1992--from 81K a week earlier.

21 Oct. 2015 Are Payrolls Slowing Because the Pool of Labor Has Evaporated? (My Publications)

One of the possible explanations for the slowdown in payroll in growth in recent months is that the pool of labor has shrunk to the point where employers can't find the people they want to hire. That's certainly one interpretation of our first chart, which shows that the NFIB survey's measure of jobs-hard-to-fill has risen to near-record levels even as payroll growth has slowed.

21 Oct. 2015 Colombia Resilient in the Face of External Headwinds (My Publications)

Colombia's industrial and retail sectors surprised to the upside in August, suggesting that the domestic economy has been resilient during most of the third quarter, despite the hit from an array of external headwinds. Industrial production increased by a solid 2.6% year-over-year in August, up from an upwardly revised 0.6% expansion in July, and above its recent trend. In the first half of the year, industrial activity fell on average by 1.1%, the worst performance since 2013, due mainly to the oil hit and ex tended works at Reficar, the country's second biggest oil refinery. But Colombia's manufacturers appear to have shrugged off part of the oil pain in recent months.

21 October. 2016 Government Spending Higher Next Year? (My Publications)

It has become pretty clear over the past couple of weeks that Hillary Clinton will be the next president, so it's now worth thinking about how fiscal policy will evolve over the next couple of years.

21 October. 2016 The BCB is Cautious, But its Inflation Fears Will Ease Soon (My Publications)

Brazil's monetary policy committee, the Copom, cut the Selic rate by 25bp to 14.0% in a unanimous decision, without bias, on Wednesday. This marks the start of the first easing cycle since 2012, and it arrives after 15 months with rates held at 14.25%.

21 Sept. 2015 Don't Focus on Industry - The U.S. is a Domestic Services Economy (My Publications)

The economy is bifurcating. Manufacturing is weak, and likely will remain so for some time, though talk of recession in the sector is overdone. Even more overdone is the idea that the softness of the industrial sector will somehow drag down the rest of the economy, which is more than seven times bigger.

21 October. 2016 The ECB Treads Water, but Hints at December QE Extension (My Publications)

The ECB held fire yesterday. The central bank kept its main refinancing rate unchanged at 0.0%, and also maintained the deposit and marginal lending facility rates at -0.4% and 0.25% respectively.

21 October. 2016 Do September Retail Sales Mark the Start of a Weaker Trend? (My Publications)

Retail sales volumes held steady in September, undershooting the consensus, 0.3%, and they were unchanged in August too. At this stage, evidence of a slowdown in retail sales growth is only tentative, but the trend will weaken decisively when retailers raise prices sharply next year.

21 Oct. 2015 Eurozone Now Runs a Bigger Current Account Surplus Than Japan and China (My Publications)

The Eurozone's external surplus remains solid, despite hitting a wall in August. The seasonally adjusted current account surplus fell to €17.7B in August from €25.6B in July, due to a €7B fall in the goods component. A 5.2% month-to-month collapse in German exports -- the biggest fall since 2009 -- was the key driver, but we expect a rebound next month. The 12-month trend in the Eurozone's external surplus continues to edge higher, rising to 3% of GDP up from 2.1% in August last year.

21 Oct. 2015 Recovery Won't Shrug Off The Fiscal Squeeze (My Publications)

The conventional wisdom that the U.K. economy will comfortably weather the coming fiscal squeeze is misplaced. The planned adjustment is large, designed to minimise its political, not economic, impact, and based on overly optimistic assumptions. What's more, the economy is in many respects less well-placed to cope with the tightening than when the previous government applied the fiscal brakes. And when the recovery slows, the Chancellor is less likely to change tack and ease the squeeze this time.

21 March 2017 Real Wage Growth in the Eurozone is Being Hit by Higher Inflation (My Publications)

One of the key characteristics of this euro area business cycle has been near-zero inflation due to structurally weak domestic demand and depressed prices for globally traded goods and commodities. This has supported real incomes, despite sluggish nominal wage growth.

21 March 2017 LatAm's Gradual Recovery will Ease Concerns on the Fiscal Front (My Publications)

Latin American markets have been relatively resilient this year, despite Fed tightening and high global political risks. The LACI index has risen more than 5% year-to-date, and the MSCI index has been trending higher since late last year.

21 July. 2016 The ECB Will Stand Pat Today, But Extend QE in September (My Publications)

Political uncertainty has surged since the ECB last met, but the central bank likely will refrain from action today. We think the ECB will keep its refi and deposit rates unchanged at 0.05% and -0.4%, respectively, and leave the monthly pace of QE unchanged at €80B.

21 July. 2016 The Retail Sales Surge Likely Met an Abrupt End in June (My Publications)

Household spending has been the sole source of growth in the economy so far this year, amid worsening investment and net trade. Today's official retail sales figures, however, look set to show that consumers suffered the Brexit blues in June.

21 July. 2016 Upside Risk for July Existing Home Sales - Price Gains Should Rebound (My Publications)

A very light week for U.S. data concludes today with four economic reports, which likely will be mixed, relative to the consensus forecasts. The recent run of clear upside surprises and robust-looking headline numbers is likely over, for the most part.

21 July. 2015 The Eurozone is Adding to Global Current Account Imbalances (My Publications)

The Eurozone's current account surplus plunged to €18.0B in May from €24.0B, the biggest monthly fall since July 2013, but an upward revision to the April data makes the headline look worse than it is. These numbers are volatile, even after seasonal adjustments, and revisions have been larger than normal this year, so we need to smooth the data to get the true story.

21 July. 2015 Easier Lending Standards Set to Lift Second Half Housing Activity (My Publications)

If the only things that mattered for the housing markets were the obvious factors--the strength of the labor market, and low mortgage rates--the sector would be booming. Activity is picking up, with new and existing home sales up by 23% and 9% year-over-year respectively in the three months to May, but the level of transactions volumes remains hugely depressed. At the peak, new home sales were sustained at an annualized rate of about 1½M, but May sales stood at only 546K. Adjusting for population growth, the long-run data suggests sales ought to be running at close to 1M.

21 July 2017 Venezuela's Economic and Political Crisis Deteriorates, Risks is Soaring (My Publications)

The risk of political change in Venezuela is coming to a boil, following President Maduro's plans for a new constituent assembly that has the power to rewrite the constitution and scrap the existing National Assembly.

21 July 2017 What to Look for from the Fed and the Data Over the next Two Weeks (My Publications)

Chair Yellen remains as committed as ever to the idea that the tightening labor market will eventually push up inflation, but the unexpectedly weak core CPI readings for the past four months have complicated the picture in the near-term.

21 June 2017 German PPI Likely has Peaked in 2017, Will Equity Markets Care? (My Publications)

German producer price inflation fell last month, following uninterrupted gains since the beginning of this year. Headline PPI inflation fell to 2.8% year-over- year in May, from 3.4% in April, constrained by lower energy inflation, which slipped to 3.0%, from 4.6% in April. Meanwhile, non-energy inflation declined marginally to 2.7%, from 2.8%.

21 June 2017 Home Sales set for new Cycle Highs, but not in May (My Publications)

Over the past couple of weeks, the number of applications for new mortgages to finance house purchase have reached their highest level since late 2010, when activity was boosted by the impending expiration of a time-limited tax credit for homebuyers.

21 Mar. 2016 Monetary Policy Divergence in LatAm Despite Calm in Markets (My Publications)

No surprises from Chile's central bank last week, after leaving rates unchanged for the third consecutive month, in the light of recent data confirming the sluggish pace of the economic recovery. In the communiqué accompanying the decision, the BCCh kept their tightening bias, signaling that rates will rise in the near term.

21 Mar. 2016 The Fed Either Hopes for a Miracle or Wants Inflation to Overshoot (My Publications)

Fed Chair Yellen made it clear in last week's press conference that she is not convinced the increase in core inflation will persist: "I want to warn that there may be some transitory factors that are influencing [the rise in core inflation]... I see some of that is having to do with unusually high inflation readings in categories that tend to be quite volatile without very much significance for inflation over time.

21 Mar. 2016 The Periphery is Slowly Regaining Competitiveness in the Eurozone (My Publications)

Labour costs growth accelerated modestly last year in the Eurozone. Data on Friday showed that Q4 nominal labour costs in the Eurozone rose 1.3% year-over-year, slightly higher than the 1.1% increase in Q3. The modest acceleration was mainly due to a rise in "non-business" labour costs, which rose 1.6% year-over-year, up from a 0.9% increase in Q3.

21 June. 2016 Monetary Policy Testimony Won't Signal a Change in Fed Thinking (My Publications)

Back in the dim and increasingly distant past the semi-annual Monetary Policy Testimony--previously known as the Humphrey-Hawkins--used to be something of an event. Today's Testimony, however, is most unlikely to change anyone's opinion of the likely pace and timing of Fed action.

21 June. 2016 All Aboard for a Recovery in German Inflation Pressures (My Publications)

Producer prices in Germany rose 0.4% month-to-month in May, stronger than the consensus expectation of a 0.3% gain, and we think further upside surprises are likely in coming months. The headline was boosted by a 0.7% jump in energy prices, but food and manufacturing goods prices also rose.

21 June 2017 Japan will Grow this Year, Despite its Structural Hurdles (My Publications)

Abenomics has had its successes in changing the structure of Japan. Notably, large numbers of women have gone back to work and corporations have started paying dividends. These are by no means small victories. But overall, the macroeconomy is essentially the same as when Shinzo Abe became prime minister.

21 June 2017 Q3 LatAm FX Will be Driven by Fundamentals and Commodities (My Publications)

LatAm investors' concerns about U.S. monetary policy expectations and the broad direction of the USD should on the back burner until the Fed hikes again, likely in September. This will leave room for country-specific drivers to take centre stage. That should support Mexico's MXN, which already has risen 14% year-to-date against the USD, erasing its losses after the US election last November.

21 Sept. 2015 Fed Abstention Increases the Risk of More QE from the ECB this Year (My Publications)

ECB growth bears looking for the Fed to move in order to take the sting out of the euro's recent strength were disappointed last week. The FOMC refrained from a hike, referring to the risk that slowing growth in China and emerging markets could "restrain economic activity" and put "downward pressure on inflation in the near term." In doing so, the Fed had an eye on the same global risks as the ECB, highlighting increased fears of deflation risks in China, despite a rosier domestic outlook.

21 Sept. 2015 Fed Delays Interest Rate Liftoff - LatAm Breathes a Sigh Of Relief (My Publications)

The Fed deferred, but did not cancel, the start of its rate normalization last week. As a consequence, December is now the most likely meeting for the first hike. The Fed's core view of the U.S. economy remains the same, but policymakers want a bit more time to see how global developments affect the U.S. Our Chief Economist, Ian Shepherdson, expects the strength of the employment data, better Chinese numbers and calm financial markets to prevent any further postponement beyond Q4.

22 Dec. 2014 - Don't Hold Your Breath Waiting for the Great Housing Rebound (My Publications)

Fed Chair Yellen said in her press conference last week that she has "...been surprised that housing hasn't recovered more robustly than it has. In part I think it reflects very tight credit--continuing tight credit conditions for any borrower that doesn't have really pristine credit... my hope is that that situation will ease over time".

22 Dec. 2015 Buy Bunds at Your Peril: Eurozone 10-year yields set to go Higher (My Publications)

Long term benchmark yields in the Eurozone almost fell to zero towards the end of the first quarter as investors were carried away in their celebration of QE. The counter-reaction to this move, though, was violent with 10-year yields surging from 0.2% to 0.9% in the space of two months from April to June, and we think a similar tantrum could be waiting in the wings for investors. We are particularly wary that upside surprises in inflation data--mainly in Germany--could push yields up sharply in the next few months.

22 Dec. 2015 Low Household Saving Implies Little Upside to Spending Outlook (My Publications)

The national accounts for the third quarter, released on Wednesday, are likely to show that households are saving a very small proportion of their incomes. Low unemployment, subdued inflation and the healthier condition of households' balance sheets suggests that very low saving is more sustainable than in the past. Nonetheless, the low rate underlines that household spending can't grow at a faster rate than incomes for a sustained period again.

22 August. 2016 Will Inflation be the Dog That Doesn't Bark, Again? (My Publications)

The period of surprisingly low inflation following sterling's plunge when the UK left the Exchange Rate Mechanism in September 1992 appears to challenge our view that inflation will overshoot the MPC's 2% target over the next couple of years. As our first chart shows, CPI inflation averaged just 2.5% in 1993 and 2% in 1994, even though trade-weighted sterling plunged by 15% and import prices surged.

22 August. 2016 Fiscal Problems Will be Exposed as Brazil's Political Mess Clears (My Publications)

Brazil's economic performance has improved marginally in recent months, with inflation falling and economic activity and sentiment data stabilizing, or even increasing modestly. The latest regional economic activity report, for instance, showed that although overall output declined again on a sequential basis in March-to-May, three of the five regions expanded.

22 August. 2016 Acceleration in German GDP Growth Likely Won't be Sustained (My Publications)

While we were out, the key economic news in the Eurozone was mostly positive. The main upside surprise came from the advance Q2 German GDP report, which showed that real GDP rose 0.4% quarter-on-quarter, slowing from the 0.7% jump in the first quarter.

22 August. 2016 Financial Services are Set to Push Core PCE Inflation Higher (My Publications)

The rate of increase of the financial services and insurance component of the PCE deflator has slowed from a recent peak of 5.8% in May 2014 to 3.3% in June this year. This matters, because it accounts for 8.4% of the core deflator, a much bigger weight than in the core CPI.

22 Dec. 2015 Miserable Economic And Political News Keeps Coming For Brazil (My Publications)

Brazil's recent political and economics news has shifted the near-term outlook from bad to worse. President Rousseff on Friday replaced hawkish Finance Minister Joaquim Levy, appointed just over a year ago, with a close partner, Planning Minister Nelson Barbosa. Mr. Levy resigned after continued conflicts with the government, including frustration by the Congress of his attempts to rein in the fiscal mess. Mr. Barbosa is known to be less market friendly, and will likely defend countercyclical measures, delaying any rapid fiscal consolidation. The appointment will deteriorate investors' confidence even further, placing the markets under enormous strain.

22 Feb. 2016 Can Extremely Low Gilt Yields Be Sustained? (My Publications)

Gilt yields slid to record lows at many maturities in mid-February, and while equity prices have since rebounded, gilt yields have remained anchored at rock-bottom levels. But with political risks rising and deficit reduction still very slow, gilt yields look primed to spring back soon.

22 February 2017 The MXN Probably is Undervalued, but it Could Move Even Lower in Q2 (My Publications)

With the MXN up more than 7% since the low of 21.9 against the dollar in January, investors are pondering just how high the Mexican currency can go. We believe that the MXN will continue to hover around its recent range, 20.1-to-20.5, in the near term, but will come under pressure again as protectionist policies in the U.S. take real shape in the spring or summer.

22 February 2017 PMI Data in the Eurozone Signal a Strengthening Economy (My Publications)

Our view that EZ survey data would take a step back in February was severely challenged by yesterday's PMI reports. The composite index in the Eurozone rose to 56.0 in February, from 54.4 in January, lifted by a jump in the services index and a small rise in the manufacturing index.

22 Jan. 2015 End of the Road for The ECB - Sovereign QE or Chaos (My Publications)

Investors will get what they want today from the ECB: additional easing in the form of government bond purchases. The central bank is likely to announce or pre-commit to sovereign QE and corporate bond purchases in a new program that will last at least two years.

22 February 2017 Easier lending standards to boost housing market? (My Publications)

Whatever today's report tells us about existing home sales in January, the underlying state of housing demand right now is unclear. The sales numbers lag mortgage applications by a few months, as our first chart shows, so they're usually the best place to start if you're pondering the near-term outlook for sales. But the applications data right now are suffering from two separate distortions, one pushing the numbers up and the other pushing them down. Both distortions should fade by the late spring, but in they meantime we'd hesitate to say we have a good idea what's really happening to demand.

22 Feb. 2016 The Fed is Ahead of the Curve but Behind the Economy (My Publications)

Here's something we didn't expect to write: The CPI measure of goods prices, excluding food and energy, rose in the three months to January, compared to the previous three months. OK, the increase was marginal, a mere 0.3%, but conventional wisdom has assumed for some time that the strong dollar would push goods prices down indefinitely.

22 Feb. 2016 Colombian Policymakers Borrow Banxico's Bazooka Strategy (My Publications)

Colombia's central bank, BanRep, increased the monetary policy rate by 25bp to 6.25% on Friday, as expected, and also announced budget cuts and a new FX strategy to try to protect the COP. These measures are similar to those taken by Banxico on Wednesday. The press release, and the tone of the conference after the decision, suggest that more hikes are coming.

22 Feb. 2016 Survey Data Will Weaken in Q1, But Won't Signal a Major Downturn (My Publications)

Economic survey data this week will give the first clear evidence on whether recent market volatility has dented Eurozone confidence. The key business and consumer surveys dipped in January, and we now expect further declines, starting with today's PMI data. We think the composite index fell slightly to 53.0 in February from 53.6 in January.

22 August 2017 Tourism is Key to Financial Stability in the Spanish Economy (My Publications)

Last week's attacks in Barcelona--one of Spain's most popular tourist spots--struck at the heart of one of the economy's main growth engines.

22 August 2017 Is the Worst Over for State and Local Government Spending? (My Publications)

Consumption and investment spending by state and local government accounts for just over 10% of the U.S. economy, making it more important than exports or consumers' spending on durable goods, and roughly equal to all business investment in equipment and intellectual property.

21 September 2017 Japanese GDP Supported by U.S. in Q3. Domestic Demand Weakening (My Publications)

Exports rebounded sharply in Q3 so far, after the Q2 weakness. This will be a useful boost to GDP growth in Q3, as domestic demand likely will soften.

21 September 2017 The FOMC is not Deterred by the Hurricanes, Expect a December Hike (My Publications)

The FOMC's view of the economic outlook and the likely required policy response, set out in yesterday's statement and Chair Yellen's press conference, could not be clearer.

21 September. 2016 No Hike Today, but the Door Will be Left Wide Open (My Publications)

We would be very surprised if the Fed were to raise rates today. The Yellen Fed is not in the business of shocking markets, and with the fed funds future putting the odds of a hike at just 22%, action today would assuredly come as a shock, with adverse consequences for all dollar assets.

21 September 2017 German PPI Inflation Set to Edge Lower into Year-End (My Publications)

German producer price inflation rebounded last month. The headline PPI index rose 2.6% year-over-year in August, up from a 2.3% increase in July, driven almost exclusively by a jump in energy inflation.

21 September 2017 August's Jump in Retail Sales Just Looks Like a Flash in the Pan (My Publications)

Retail sales increased by 1.0% month-to-month in August, exceeding our no-change forecast and spurring markets to price-in a 65% chance that the MPC will raise interest rates at its next meeting on November 2, up from 60% beforehand.

21 September 2016 A Reverse Twist by the BOJ would move EZ bond markets (My Publications)

Financial markets in the Eurozone will be pushed around by global events today. The Bank of Japan kicks off the party in the early hours CET, and the spectrum of investors' expectations is wide.

21 September 2016 Still Little Scope for Optimism on Business Investment (My Publications)

If the economy is to enter recession, falling business investment probably will have to be the main driver. Growth in consumer spending likely will slow sharply over the next year as firms become more cautious about hiring new workers and inflation begins to exceed wage growth again.

21 September. 2016 Sluggish Start to Q3 in Brazil, But Trend is Still Improving (My Publications)

Brazil's recession stretched into the start of the third quarter, but its intensity has eased. The IBC-Br economic activity index--a monthly proxy for GDP--fell 0.1% month-to-month seasonally adjusted in July, following a 0.4% gain in June. The unadjusted year-over-year rate fell to -5.2%, from an upwardly revised -2.9%.

22 Apr. 2015 Do rising Inventories pose a threat to growth? (My Publications)

A classic indicator of impending recession is the emergence of excessive levels of inventory across the economy. The pace of businesses inventory accumulation typically lags sales growth, so when activity slows, usually in response to higher interest rates, firms are left with unsold goods.

22 August 2017 Don't Hold Your Breath for Euro-Sterling Parity (My Publications)

Sterling's renewed depreciation to just €1.10--just below last year's nadir--has fuelled speculation that it could reach parity against the euro within the next year.

22 August 2017 Economic Activity is Turning Up in LatAm, but no Boom Coming (My Publications)

LatAm's economies are gradually rebounding, boosted by easier monetary policy in most countries, falling inflation, and a relatively calm external backdrop.

22 Apr. 2016 The ECB is Worried About Elevated Financial Market Volatility (My Publications)

The ECB held fire yesterday and kept its main refinancing and deposit rates unchanged at 0.0% and -0.4%, respectively. The central bank also left the pace of monthly asset purchases unchanged at €80B. The introductory statement overall confirmed the central bank's dovish stance.

22 Apr. 2016 Jobs Data Suggest--But Don't Guarantee Faster Q2 Growth (My Publications)

Looking back at the numbers over the past few weeks, it is pretty clear that the gap between the strong payroll reports and the activity data widened to a chasm in the first quarter. We now expect GDP growth of about zero--the latest Atlanta Fed estimate is +0.3% and the New York Fed's new model points to 0.8%--but payrolls rose at an annualized 1.9% rate.

22 Apr. 2015 Sustained job gains are key to Eurozone consumers sentiment (My Publications)

Advance April consumer survey data will likely confirm that households remain the standout driver of the cyclical recovery in the euro area. We think the headline EC consumer sentiment index rose to -1.0 in April from -3.7 in March.

22 Apr. 2016 Good News for the BCB as Brazil's Inflation Slowdown is Confirmed (My Publications)

Brazil's mid-April inflation report delivered more evidence that inflation is decelerating; it fell to 9.3% from 10.0% in March, reaching the slowest pace since July 2015. The unadjusted month-to-month increase surprised marginally to the upside, but the key story is of a declining year-over-year trend. Core inflation, which is a lagging indicator of the business cycle, slowed again, in line with the decline in services and market prices inflation.

21 July 2017 Q2 Consumption will be Weak, Despite the Pickup in Retail Sales (My Publications)

On the face of it, June's retail sales figures suggest that households have splurged in Q2, re-energising GDP growth after its slowdown in Q1. Sales volumes rose by 0.6% month-to-month in June, completing a 1.5% quarter-on-quarter jump in Q2.

21 July 2017 Don't Bet the Farm on a Major QE Decision in September (My Publications)

The ECB pressed the repeat button yesterday. The central bank maintained its refinancing rate at 0.00%, and also kept the deposit and marginal lending facility rate at -0.4% and 0.25 respectively. The pace of QE was held at €60B per month, scheduled to run until the end of December, "or beyond, if necessary."

20 Oct. 2015 Could the Terminal Funds Rate be Much Higher Than Markets Think? (My Publications)

In the September forecasts, the median forecast of FOMC members for the long-term fed funds rate was 3.5%. Their long-term inflation forecast is 2%-- it has to be 2%, otherwise they would be forecasting permanent failure to meet their policy objectives -- implying a real rate of 1.5%. This is well below the long-run average; from 1960 through 2005, the real funds rate--the nominal rate less the rate of increase of the PCE deflator--averaged 2.4%.

20 Oct. 2015 Inflation Rebound to Force MPC's Hand, Even if Recovery Slows (My Publications)

The consensus view on the Monetary Policy Committee, that it will take two years for CPI inflation to return to the 2% target, looks complacent. Leading indicators suggest that price pressures will return faster than both policymakers and markets expect. Interest rates are therefore likely to rise in the first half of 2016, even if the recovery loses momentum.

20 Oct. 2015 Slowdown in U.K. GDP Growth to Dent EZ Exports Next Year? (My Publications)

Our new Chief U.K. economist, Samuel Tombs, initiated his coverage yesterday with a sombre, non-consensus, message on the economy. Headwinds from fiscal tightening and net trade will weigh on GDP growth next year, but the BoE will likely have to look through such cyclical weakness, and hike as inflation creeps higher. An intensified drag from net trade in the U.K. will, other things equal, benefit the Eurozone. But a slowdown in U.K. GDP growth still poses a notable risk to euro area headline export growth, especially in the latter part of next year.

20 Nov. 2015 Will Corporate Yields Become a Good Leading Indicator Again? (My Publications)

In the years before the crash of 2008, if you wanted to know what was likely to happen to the pace of U.S. economic growth, all you needed to know was what happened to corporate bond yields a year earlier. The correlation between movements in BBB industrial yields--not spreads--and the changes in the rate of GDP growth, lagged by a year, was remarkably strong from 1994 through 2008, as our first chart shows. Roughly, a 50 basis point increase in yields could be expected to reduce the pace of year-over-year GDP growth--the second differential, in other words--by about 1.5 percentage points.

20 Nov. 2015 EZ Current Account Surplus Goes from Strength to Strength (My Publications)

The current account surplus in the Eurozone is well on its way to stabilising above 3% of GDP this year. The seasonally adjusted surplus rose to €29.4B in September from a revised €18.7B in August, lifted by a higher trade surplus, thanks to rebounding German exports. The services balance was unchanged at €4.5B in September, while the primary income balance edged higher to €4.8B from €4.0B. The improving external balance has been driven mostly by a surging trade surplus with the U.S. and the U.K., as our first chart shows.

20 May. 2016 Let the Good Times Roll in EZ Corporate Bond Markets (My Publications)

Markets have responded strongly to the ECB's announcement that it will be buying corporate bonds as part of QE. Net corporate debt issuance of non-financial firms jumped €16B in March, the biggest monthly increase since January 2014. The 12-month average, however, was stable at €3.6B, and a sustained increase in net debt supply partly depends on firms' appetite for financial engineering

20 Nov. 2015 Economic Conditions Deteriorate in Brazil - No Bottom Just Yet (My Publications)

This week economic data highlighted the severity of Brazil's economic recession and the huge challenges it will face next year to return to growth. The recession further deepened in the third quarter with the economic activity index--a monthly proxy for GDP--surprising, once again, to the downside in September. The index fell 0.5% month-to-month, pushing the year-over-year rate down to 6.2%, the steepest fall on record. The series is very volatile on a monthly basis, but the underlying trend remains grim.

20 October. 2016 Are Jobless Claims Really at a 43-Year Low?  (My Publications)

The recent jobless claims numbers have been spectacularly good, with the absolute level dropping unexpectedly in the past two weeks to a 43-year low. The four-week moving average has dropped by a hefty 14K since late August.

20 October. 2016 Rising Prices Will Arrest the Strong Trend in Retail Sales Next Year (My Publications)

It's hard to have much conviction in any forecast for September retail sales, as the relationship between the official data and the surveys has weakened considerably.

20 September 2017 Expect a December Hike (My Publications)

The FOMC won't raise rates today, but we expect that the announcement of the start of balance sheet reduction will not be interrupted by Harvey and Irma.

20 September 2017 Is China set to Open Further its Financial Sector to Foreigners? (My Publications)

Bloomberg reported on Monday that the PBoC is drafting a package of reforms to give foreign investors greater access to the China's financial services sector. This could involve allowing foreign institutions to control their local joint ventures and raising the 25% ceiling on foreign ownership of Chinese banks.

20 September 2017 The MXN Remains Strong, but Further Upside Potential is Modest (My Publications)

Banxico's tightening cycle has totalled 400 basis points, lifting rates to 7.0%. Since late 2015, Banxico has followed the Fed closely, but other external factors also have guided many of its decisions.

20 September 2017 Construction in the Eurozone Will Continue to Lift GDP Growth in Q3 (My Publications)

Construction in the Eurozone had a decent start in the third quarter. Output rose 0.5% month-to- month in July, pushing the year-over-year rate down to 1.9% from 2.8% in June.

20 September 2016 Will Weaker Sterling Ride to the Economy's Rescue? (My Publications)

Hopes that the economy will not slow over the next year are largely pinned on the idea that net trade will be boosted by the drop in sterling. The pound has tracked sideways over the last two months and is about 15% below its trade-weighted peak in November 2015.

20 October.2016 The ECB Will Prepare Markets for QE Extension in December (My Publications)

We don't expect any major policy announcements at today's ECB meeting. We think the central bank will keep its main refinancing rate unchanged at 0.0%, and we expect the deposit and marginal lending facility rates to remain at -0.4% and 0.25%, respectively.

20 September 2016 The Recycling of the EZ's Current Account Surplus Continues (My Publications)

The external surplus in the EZ economy slipped in July. The seasonally-adjusted current account surplus dropped to €21.0B, from a revised €29.5B in June, hit by an increase in the current transfers deficit, and a falling trade surplus. The recent increase in the transfers deficit partly is due to the migrant deal with Turkey, and we expect it to remain elevated.

20 May. 2016 Falling PPI Goods Prices Don't Signal Lower Core CPI Inflation (My Publications)

If you gave us $100, we'd put $90 on inflation, headline and core, being higher a year from now than it is today. Our view, however, is not universally shared, and some commentators continue to argue that the U.S. faces deflation risks. Exhibit one for this view is our first chart, which shows a high correlation between the PPI for finished goods prices and the CPI inflation rate, ex-shelter.

20 May. 2016 Chile's GDP Growth is Not Accelerating, Despite Strong Q1 (My Publications)

The Chilean economy improved in the first quarter, growing 2.0% year-over-year, up from 1.3% in the fourth quarter. Net trade led the improvement, with exports rising 2.1% quarter-on-quarter, thanks to the modest rise in metal prices and an increase in exports of services, especially tourism.

20 June. 2016 Will EZ Equity Inflows Rebound Again in this Business Cycle? (My Publications)

A year can make a big difference for the equity market. At this point last year, holders of the MSCI EU ex-UK were looking at a meaty gain of 21% year-to-date. The corresponding number this year is a sobering -12%. This is a remarkable shift, given stable GDP growth, close to cyclical highs, and additional easing by the ECB.

20 Mar. 2015 Earnings and Treasuries at Risk, but the ECB's QE is a Wild Card (My Publications)

Under normal circumstances, we would have no hesitation calling for substantially higher long Treasury yields and a lower earnings multiple as the Fed raises rates. History tells us that you fight the Fed at your peril, as our first two charts show.

20 Mar. 2015 LatAm FX Rally After Fed's Signal, But Relief Will be Temporary (My Publications)

The global economy is heading towards a new scenario, triggered by the impending start of the monetary policy normalization process in the U.S. In some major economies, notably the Eurozone, the Fed's actions will not derail or even jeopardize the cyclical economic upturn.

20 June. 2016 How Can the Fed Escape From the Loop of Endless Inaction? (My Publications)

For some time, the Fed has been locked in a loop of endless inaction. Every time the economic data improve and the Fed signals it is preparing to raise rates, either markets--both domestic and global-- react badly, and/or a patch of less good data appear. The nervous, cautious Yellen Fed responds by dialling back the talk of tightening, and markets relax again, until the next time.

20 June. 2016 Brazil's Macro Conditions are Improving - Rate Cuts During H2? (My Publications)

Brazil's recession carried over into the beginning of Q2, but with diminishing intensity. The IBC-BR economic activity index, a monthly proxy for GDP, fell 5.0% year-over-year in April, up from a revised 6.4% contraction in March. The index's underlying trend has improved in recent months, suggesting that the economy is turning around, slowly.

20 June 2017 Brazil's Recovery Continues, but Politics have Harmed its Prospects (My Publications)

Economic data released in recent weeks underscore that Brazil emerged from recession in Q1, but the recovery is fragile and further rate cuts are badly needed. The political crisis has damaged the reform agenda, and political uncertainty lingers.

20 June 2017 China Property is Slowing, Prices now Depend on Mortgage Rates (My Publications)

House price inflation in tier-one cities has been crushed by China's most recent monetary tightening. This is a sharp turnaround from the overheating mid-way through last year. Unlike in previous cycles, interest rates are probably more important for house prices than broad money growth.

20 Mar. 2015 The Euro Probably is Undervalued, But it Could Move Even Lower (My Publications)

With the euro down more than 23% since the peak of 1.39 against the dollar last year, investors are pondering just how low the single currency can go. If the purchasing power parity holds in the long run, the real effective exchange rate, REER, should be stationary--mean reverting--around a constant average in the long run.

20 March 2017 If Fundamental Tax Reform Fails, What Happens to Fiscal Policy? (My Publications)

The White House Budget for fiscal 2018, released last week, has no chance of becoming law in anything like its current form, so we don't propose to spend much time dissecting it. But we do need to set out our view on what might actually happen to fiscal policy over the next few months, because it potentially could make a material difference to the pace, and ultimate extent, of Fed tightening.

20 May. 2015 Slowly Does it For Q2 Upturn In Eurozone Inflation (My Publications)

Final inflation in the Eurozone was confirmed at 0.0% year-over-year in April, up slightly from -0.1% in March. The recovery since the trough in January has been driven mostly by a reduced drag from lower energy prices, a trend which should continue in the second quarter.

20 May. 2015 What Does the Fed Think Really Happened in the First Quarter? (My Publications)

The FOMC's statement on April 29 mentioned the winter--"...economic growth slowed during the winter months"--but did not explicitly blame any of the first quarter's weakness on the extended cold and snowy weather. That was a change from the March statement, which made no mention of the weather and gave the distinct impression that policymakers had no firm view on why growth had "moderated".

20 May. 2015 Chile is Recovering, But Colombia Faces Further Near-Term Softness (My Publications)

Colombia, the third largest economy in LatAm, has not been immune to the headwinds of the global economy since the financial crisis in 2008, though it remains one of the fastest growing economies in the region. GDP growth slowed sharply to just 1.7% in 2009, but that was still much better than the 1.2% contraction of the region as a whole.

20 March 2017 February's Above-Target Inflation Rate won't be the Last (My Publications)

February's consumer price report, released tomorrow, likely will show that CPI inflation has breached the MPC's 2% target for the first time since November 2013. Indeed, we think the headline rate jumped to 2.2%, from 1.8% in January, exceeding the 2.1% rate expected by the MPC and the consensus.

20 March 2017 The BCCh Leaves Open a Tiny Space for Further Easing (My Publications)

Chile's central bank cut the policy rate 25bp last week to 3.0%, in line with consensus, amid easing inflationary pressures. The timing of the rate cut was no surprise; in January, the BCCh cut rates for the first time in more than two years, and kept a dovish bias.

20 March 2017 Construction in the EZ is Doing Fine, Despite January Plunge (My Publications)

The Eurozone construction sector ground to a halt at the start of 2017. Data on Friday showed that output plunged 2.3% month-to-month in January, pushing the year-over-year rate down to -6.0%, from a revised +3.0% in December. The weakness was broad-based across the major economies, but it was concentrated in France and Spain where output fell by 3.5% and 3.8%, respectively.

20 September 2017 August Retail Sales to Confirm Consumption Still Weak in Q3 (My Publications)

August's retail sales figures, released today, look set to show that growth in consumers' spending has remained subpar in Q3, casting doubt over whether the MPC will conclude that the economy can cope with a rate hike this year.

20 September. 2016 Homebuilders Need to Catch up to Rising Sales - Expect a Q4 Surge (My Publications)

The information available to date--which is still very incomplete--suggests that new housing construction will decline in the third quarter. This would be the second straight decline, following the 6.1% drop in Q2. We aren't expecting such a large fall in the third quarter, but it is nonetheless curious that housing investment--construction, in other words--is falling at a time when new home sales have risen sharply.

21 December 2016 Is FDI Now the Main Driver of Eurozone Capital Outflows? (My Publications)

The Eurozone's external surplus is on track for a record-breaking year in 2016. Data yesterday showed that the current account surplus rose to €28.4B in October, from €27.7B in September. The trade surplus in goods fell, but this drag was offset by a higher services and income surplus, and a lower current transfers deficit.

21 February 2017 Are EZ Survey Data Overestimating Momentum in the Economy? (My Publications)

We think this week's main economic surveys in the Eurozone will take a step back following a steady rise since the end of Q3. Today's composite PMI in the Eurozone likely slipped to 54.0 in February, from 54.4 in January, mainly due to a dip in the manufacturing component. Even if we're right about slightly weaker survey data in February, though, it is unlikely to change the story of a stable and solid cyclical expansion in the EZ.

21 February 2017 Brazil's Current Account Remains Healthy, FDI In ows are Robust (My Publications)

Brazil's current account data last week provided further evidence of stabilisation in the economy, despite the modest headline deterioration. The unadjusted current account deficit increased marginally to USD5.1B in January, from USD4.8B in January 2016, but the underlying trend remains stable, at about 1.3% of GDP. Our first two charts show that the overall deficit began to stabilize in mid-2016, as the rate of improvement in the trade balance slowed, reflecting the easing of the domestic recession.

21 December 2016 Home Sales Likely Fell in November, Before the Hit from Higher Rates (My Publications)

After two big monthly gains in existing home sales, culminating in October's nine-year high of 5.60M, we expect a dip in sales in today's November report. This wouldn't be such a big deal -- data correct after big movements all the time -- were it not for the downward trend in mortgage applications.

21 December 2016 Consumption Likely Remained Firm in Mexico in Q4, But it Will Slow (My Publications)

Yesterday's report on October private spending in Mexico was positive, suggesting that consumption remained relatively strong at the start of Q4. Retail sales jumped 1.6% month-to-month, following a modest 0.2% drop in September. October's rebound was the biggest gain since March this year, but note that wild swings are not unusual in these data. The headline year-over-year rate rose to 9.3%, from 8.1% in September, but survey data signal to a gradual slowdown in coming months to around 5%.

21 Dec. 2015 Paris Attacks Unlikely to Dent Q4 French GDP Growth Severely (My Publications)

Manufacturing confidence in France remained resilient in the fourth quarter. The INSEE sentiment index rose to 103 in December from 102 in November, lifted by a jump in firms' own production expectations, and a small increase in the new orders-to-inventory ratio. We think production will increase in Q4, lifted by energy output, but the recent jump in the year-over-year rate is unlikely to be sustained, even if we factor in the marginal increase in new orders this month.

21 December 2016 Big Current Account Deficit Likely to Cloud Resilient GDP Picture (My Publications)

The third quarter national accounts, due to be published on Friday, likely will not alter the picture of economic resilience immediately after the referendum. The latest estimate of GDP growth often is revised in this release, but revisions have not exceeded 0.1 percentage points in either direction in the last four years, as our first chart shows.

21 February 2017 Fiscal Policy Won't Be Eased, Even If January's Surplus is Huge (My Publications)

January's public finance data, released today, take on particular importance because they are the last to be published before the Chancellor delivers his first Budget on March 8. The public finances nearly always swing into surplus in January, primarily because the deadline for individuals to submit self-assessment--SA--tax returns for the previous fiscal year is at the end of the month. Firms also pay their third of four payments of corporation tax for their profits in the current fiscal year.

21 February 2017 Wages Don't Necessarily Lead Inflation, but Unit Labor Costs do (My Publications)

Fed Chair Yellen said something which sounded odd, at first, in her Q&A at the Senate Banking Committee last Tuesday. It is "not clear" she argued, that the rate of growth of wages has a "direct impact on inflation".

21 Jan. 2016 The ECB is Under Pressure to Act, but Likely Will Hold Fire Today (My Publications)

Financial markets have put maximum pressure on the ECB going into today's meeting, but we doubt it will be enough to spur the governing council into action so soon after announcing additional stimulus in December. We think the central bank will keep its refi and deposit rate unchanged at 0.05% and -0.3% respectively, and maintain the pace of asset purchases at €60B a month.

21 Jan. 2016 Why Aren't Core Goods Prices Falling Much Faster? (My Publications)

Another day, another sharp drop in the stock market, and another wavelet of commentary suggesting recession and deflation are just around the corner. We have no argument with the idea that the manufacturing sector could contract over, say, the next six months. But the other 88% of the economy--apart from the 1½% of GDP generated by oil extraction-- is benefiting from the strong dollar and cheap fuel.

21 July 2017 BoJ to Allow Foreign Tightening to Ease Japanese Policy, for now (My Publications)

Governor Kuroda commented yesterday that he doesn't think Japan needs more easing at this stage. If he means that the BoJ does not have to change policy to provide more easing then we think he is right, on two and a half counts. First, Japan is likely to receive a boost under its current framework as external rate rises exceed expectations, driving down the yen.

21 Jan. 2016 Could the Chancellor Still Reduce Borrowing This Year as Planned? (My Publications)

By any yardstick, progress in reducing public sector borrowing so far this fiscal year has been poor. While the borrowing trend should improve in the final four months of this year--including December's figures, published Friday--the Chancellor has only a slim chance of meeting the forecasts set out in the Autumn Statement.

21 Jan. 2015 Welcome Gain in ZEW, but Still Not Confirmed by IFO or PMIs (My Publications)

Investor sentiment in the Eurozone showed further signs of recovery yesterday. The ZEW expectations index rose strongly to 48.4 in January from 34.9 in December, and the leap since the trough in October ranks among the strongest rebounds ever recorded in the index.

21 Jan. 2015 - Spending Not Yet Surging in the Wake of Cheaper Gas, But it Will (My Publications)

So far, the surge in retail spending promised by the plunge in gasoline prices has not materialized. The latest Redbook chain store sales numbers dipped below the gently rising trend last week, perhaps because of severe weather, but the point is that the holiday season burst of spending has not been maintained.

21 Jan. 2015 Colombia Will Lose Momentum in 2015, But Don't Panic Just Yet (My Publications)

Colombia is one of the few larger economies in Latin America to have enjoyed solid, positive economic growth over the past two years. But lower commodity prices and last year's central bank tightening, to curb high inflation generated by strong growth, have started to become visible in the main economic data.

21 Dec. 2015 How Vulnerable is the U.K. to a Current Account Crisis? (My Publications)

The latest balance of payments figures, released Wednesday, look set to show that the current account deficit widened in Q3, underlying the U.K.'s vulnerability to a sudden change in overseas investor sentiment. The risk of a full-blown sterling crisis, however, is lower than the enormous current account deficit would appear to suggest.

21 Dec. 2015 Fed Tightening Triggers Immediate Policy Changes in LatAm (My Publications)

Central banks in Mexico, Colombia and Chile raised interest rates last week in tandem with the Fed, underscoring the almost mystical importance of the FOMC's actions in Latin America. In Colombia and Chile, their decisions were also helped by rising inflation pressures, due mainly to pass-through effects from currency depreciation.

21 Apr. 2016 Argentina Returns to the Bond Market After 15 Years of Isolation (My Publications)

After a 15 year hiatus, Argentina returned to the global credit markets yesterday with the sale of a USD16.5B sovereign bonds, the largest ever dollar offering by a developing country. Argentina boosted the size of its offering to USD16.5B from USD15B after attracting orders worth USD70B. The country sold four tranches: 10-year debt at 7.5%, three- and five year yielding 6.25% and 6.875%, respectively, and 30-year paper at 8.0%.

21 Apr. 2016 Further Evidence that the Manufacturing Rollover is History? (My Publications)

The recent sharp, if not startling, upturn in the regional manufacturing surveys should continue today with the release of the Philadelphia Fed report. The survey is constructed in the same way as the more volatile Empire State, which has rocketed in the past few months, and the headline indexes follow similar trends, as our first chart shows.

21 Apr. Retail Sales Likely to Disappoint in March Due to Weak Easter Trading (My Publications)

Signs that Easter trading was unusually poor lead us to anticipate a downside surprise from today's retail sales data for March. The BRC's Retail Sales Monitor, which surveys companies that account for 60% of total retail sales, was remarkably weak in March.

21 Apr. 2016 All Eyes on the Details of QE and TLTROs in Today's ECB Meeting (My Publications)

The ECB will keep its refinancing and deposit rates unchanged today, at 0.0% and -0.4% respectively. We also think the pace of QE will be held at €80B per month. Attention will turn instead to the details and implementation of the measures unveiled last month. Corporate bonds will be added to QE at the end of the second quarter, and monthly purchases of about €5-to-€10B per month are a realistic assumption.

21 Apr. 2015 Survey evidence signalling faster wage gains is mounting (My Publications)

We have argued for some time that the plunge in gasoline prices will constrain core inflation over the course of this year, by reducing production and distribution costs for a broad array of goods.

20 September. 2016 LatAm's Disinflation is Gathering Speed - Rate Cuts Soon? (My Publications)

August inflation surprised to the downside across most of LatAm, as food price surges proved transitory, and the lagged effect of the FX depreciations last year faded. Brazil appeared to be the exception last month, but the underlying trend in inflation is downwards.

21 Apr. 2015 Greek IMF default is looming, but it won't necessarily mean Grexit (My Publications)

Media reports that Greece and the EU are putting together "contingency plans" for a Greek default--and perhaps even an exit from the Eurozone--highlight how far the parties remain from each other.

21 April 2017 Faites vos Jeux! Anything is Possible in France this Weekend (My Publications)

This weekend's first round of the French presidential election is too close to call. Our first chart indicates that a runoff between Marine Le Pen and Emmanuel Macron remains the best bet. But the statistical uncertainty inherent in the predictions, and the proximity of the two remaining candidates--the centre-right Mr. Fillon and far-left Mr. Melenchon-- mean that this is now effectively a four-horse race.

21 August 2017 Chile's Economy is Improving, but Expect Only Modest Growth in H2 (My Publications)

Chile's Q2 GDP report, released on Friday, confirmed that the economy gathered momentum in recent months, following an alarmingly weak start to the year.

21 August. 2015 What Does the Fed Need to See in Order to Hike in September? (My Publications)

When the Bernanke Fed embarked on the first of its 17 straight quarter-point tightenings, on 30 June 2004, the latest available GDP data showed that the economy expanded at a robust 3.9% annualized rate in the first quarter of the year. After being revised up to 4.5%, the latest estimate for growth in the first quarter of 2004 is just 2.3%.

21 Dec. 2015 Corporations Still Over-leveraged, but Little Near-Term Danger? (My Publications)

The markets' favorite story of the moment, aside from the Fed, seems to be the idea that overstretched corporate finances are an accident waiting to happen. When the crunch comes, the unavoidable hit to the stock market and the corporate bond market will have dire consequences, limiting the Fed's scope to raise rates, regardless of what might be happening in the labor market. We don't buy this. At least, we don't buy the second part of the narrative; we have no problem with the idea the finances of the corporate sector are shaky.

21 August. 2015 Mexico's Domestic Recovery Remains - But Oil Woes Continue (My Publications)

The Mexican economy had a decent start to the year thanks to resilient domestic demand, but hampered by the rollover in capital spending in the oil sector and the slowdown in manufacturing activity. Economic activity expanded 2.2% year-over-year in the second quarter, down from 2.6% in the first quarter, but the underlying trend remains reasonably solid.

21 August 2017 The Peak in CPI Inflation Still Hasn't Been Reached Yet (My Publications)

After soaring in the Spring, inflation has slipped back in the Summer. July's consumer prices report, released while we were away last week, showed that CPI inflation held steady at 2.6% in July, one -tenth below the consensus and three tenths below May's year-to-date peak.

21 August 2017 Construction is Propelling the Eurozone Economy in 2017 (My Publications)

The construction sector remains a stand-out performer in the Eurozone economy, despite stumbling at the end of Q2.

21 August 2017 Growth Momentum and Slow Hikes Means no Recession Until 2019 (My Publications)

We have had something of a rethink about the likely timing of the coming cyclical downturn. Previously, we thought the economy would start to slow markedly in the middle of next year, with a mild recession--two quarters of modest declines in GDP-- beginning in the fourth quarter.

22 Jan. 2015 Should We Be Scared by the Flattening Curve? (My Publications)

The flattening of the curve in recent months has been substantial, but in our view it is telling us little, if anything, about the outlook for growth. More than anything else, investors in longer Treasuries care about inflation, and the likely path of headline inflation clearly has been lowered by the plunge in oil prices.

22 Jan. 2016 Brazil's Central Bank on Hold, And Rate Hikes are Now Less Likely (My Publications)

Brazil's decision to keep interest rates at 14.25% on Wednesday was a surprise. The consensus forecast immediately before the meeting was for a 25bp increase. As recently as Tuesday, though, most forecasters expected a 50bp increase, following hawkish comments from Board members since the last meeting in November, and rising inflation expectations. But the day before the meeting, the IMF revised its forecast for 2016 GDP to -3.5%, much worse than the 1% drop it predicted in October.

23 March 2017 February Retail Sales Likely to Confirm Consumer Slowdown (My Publications)

Under normal circumstances, we would expect today's retail sales figures to reveal that volumes rebounded in February, following the 2.7% fall over the previous three months. But the continued weakness of spending surveys suggests that we should brace for another soft report.

23 March 2017 The Eurozone's Primary Income Surplus is Climbing Steadily (My Publications)

The Eurozone's total external surplus hit the skids at the start of the year. Yesterday's report showed that the seasonally adjusted current account surplus plunged to a two-year low of €24.1B in January, from a revised €30.8B in December.

23 March 2017 Warm Weather Points to Upside Risk for February New Home Sales (My Publications)

New home sales are much more susceptible to weather effects -- in both directions -- than existing home sales. We have lifted our forecast for today's February numbers above the 575K pace implied by the mortgage applications data in recognition of the likely boost from the much warmer-than-usual temperatures.

23 Mar. Inflation Still Set to Rebound Soon, Despite Stability in February (My Publications)

CPI inflation remained at 0.3% in February, below the consensus, 0.4%, and our own expectation, 0.5%. All the unexpected weakness, however, was in food and core goods prices, and past movements in commodity and import prices suggest that this will be fleeting

23 Mar. 2016 Welcome March Rebound in Eurozone Economic Survey Data (My Publications)

Economic sentiment data, which rebounded in March, continue to suggest slight downside risk to EZ GDP growth in Q1. The composite Eurozone PMI in March rose modestly to 53.7 from 53.0 in February, only partially erasing the weakness in recent months. The PMI dipped slightly over the quarter as a whole, although not enough to change the EZ GDP forecast in a statistically meaningful way.

23 Mar. 2016 Mortgage Lending Conditions Improving - Where are the Sales? (My Publications)

Further evidence emerged yesterday in support of our view that mortgage lending conditions are easing. The monthly mortgage origination report from Ellie Mae, Inc., a private mortgage processing firm, shows average credit scores for both successful and unsuccessful loan applications continue to trend downwards--though the latter rose marginally in February--while loans are closing much more quickly than in the recent past.

23 Mar. 2016 Rousseff's Government is on the Ropes - Fiscal Progress Will Slow (My Publications)

Political turmoil in Brazil continues to undermine President Dilma Rousseff's leverage over the economy. On Friday, the Lower House of Congress voted to start impeachment proceeding against Ms. Rousseff. She has until early April to present her defense against charges that she doctored government accounts and used graft proceeds to fund the 2014 electoral campaign.

23 May 2017 Has the Outlook for Business Investment Brightened? (My Publications)

The recent deceleration in households' real spending means that either business investment or net exports will have to pickup if the economy is to avoid a severe slowdown this year.

23 May 2017 How to Lift French GDP Growth to Above 1.5% Year-over-year (My Publications)

The recovery in the French economy since the sovereign debt crisis has been lukewarm. Growth in domestic demand, excluding inventories, has averaged 0.4% quarter-on-quarter since 2012. This comp ares with 0.8%-to-1.1% in the two major business cycle upturns in the 1990s and from 2000s before the crisis.

23 Nov. 2015 Domestic Demand Offsets External Woes in Mexico and Colombia (My Publications)

Mexico's economy gathered momentum in Q3, thanks mainly to solid gains in industrial and services activity. Real GDP rose 0.8% quarter-on-quarter in Q3, the fastest pace since Q3 2013 and the ninth consecutive increase. Year-over-year growth rose to 2.6% year-over-year, from 2.3% in Q2. In short, a positive report, surprising to the upside, and above the INEGI's advance estimate, released in late October.

23 Nov. 2015 How to Scare Yourself Over the U.S. Inflation Outlook (My Publications)

Should you be feeling in the mood to panic over inflation risks--or more positively, benefit from the markets' underpricing of inflation risks--consider the following scenario. First, assume that the uptick in wages reported in October really does mark the start of the long-awaited sustained acceleration promised by a 5% unemployment rate and employers' difficulty in finding people to hire. Second, assume that the rental property market remains extremely tight. Third, assume that the abrupt upturn in medical costs in the October CPI is a harbinger o f things to come. And finally, assume that the Fed hawks are right in their view that the initial increase in interest rates will--to quote the September FOMC minutes--"...spur, rather than restrain economic activity". Under these conditions, what happens to inflation?

23 Nov. 2015 The Challenge of Surging Migration Won't Go Away Soon (My Publications)

The flow of Middle-Eastern refugees taking the treacherous journey towards Europe continues unabated. UNHCR estimates of arrivals through the Western Balkan route--mainly originating from Greece and Serbia--suggest the average daily number of refugees has been stable so far between October and November at about 11,000. These data are very unreliable, but they indicate that the onset of winter on the European continent--and the added risk to migrants with no shelter--will not deter people from attempting the trip to Europe.

23 May. 2016 Will Profit Margins in Germany be Squeezed by Higher Wages? (My Publications)

Margins for German manufacturing firms remained depressed at the start of the second quarter. The headline PPI rose 0.1% month-to-month in April, pushing the year-over-year rate down marginally to -3.1% from a revised -3.0% in March. Falling energy prices are the key driver of the overall decline in the PPI.

23 May. 2016 LatAm Markets Hit by a Hawkish Fed - Choppy Summer Ahead? (My Publications)

Weakness across EM asset markets returned after the April FOMC minutes, released last week, suggested that a June rate hike is a real possibility. The risks posed by Brexit, however, is still a very real barrier to Fed action, with the vote coming just eight days after the FOMC meeting.

23 May 2017 The Mexican Economy Shrugged Off Trump in Q1, But Risks Remain (My Publications)

Yesterday's detailed Mexican GDP report confirmed that growth was resilient in Q1, despite external and domestic headwinds. GDP rose 0.7% quarter-on-quarter in Q1, in line with our expectation, but marginally above the first estimate, 0.6%.

23 May. 2016 Does the Fed Funds Laffer Curve Explain Sluggish Growth? (My Publications)

Like just about everyone else, we have struggled in recent years to find a convincing explanation for the persistent sluggishness of growth even as the Fed has cut rates to zero and expanded its balance sheet to a peak of $4.2T. Sure, we can explain the slowdown in growth in 2010, when the post-crash stimulus ended, and the subsequent softening in 2013, when government spending was cut by the sequester.

23 Mar. 2015 Savings Rate Jump is Temporary - It Will Reverse in Spring (My Publications)

If we are right in our view that the lag between shifts in gasoline prices and the response from consumers is about six months--longer than markets seem to think--then the next few months should see spending surge.

23 Mar. 2015 Manufacturing remains the key driver of the EZ business cycle (My Publications)

The Eurozone economy is becoming increasingly service-oriented. The private services sector has contributed just over 50% of gross value added-- GVA -- in the past three years, up from 44% in the seven years before the crash of 2008.

23 July. 2015 Mortgage Demand Signals Rising Third Quarter Home Sales (My Publications)

If the recovery in existing homes hadn't been interrupted by the taper tantrum, in the spring of 2013, sales by now would likely be running at an annualized rate in excess of 6M. The rising trend in sales from late 2010 through early 2013 was strong and stable, as our first chart shows, but the decline was steep after the Fed signalled it would soon slow the pace of QE, and it was made temporarily worse by the severe late fall and early winter weather.

23 July. 2015 Slow, but Steady, Recovery in French Manufacturing This Year (My Publications)

The manufacturing industry in France is recovering slowly, but surely. The headline INSEE index rose to 102 in July from 101 in June, close to a post-crisis high, pointing to steady improvement for manufacturers. Our first chart shows the main leading components of the survey, indicating a modest, but positive, trend in output. The increase in sentiment in July was driven by firming new orders--especially in the export sector--pushing the new orders-to-inventory ratio to an 18-month high.

23 June 2017 Brazil and Argentina Under Renewed But Temporary Pressure (My Publications)

Financial markets in Brazil and Argentina have been under pressure this week, following negative news, both domestic and external. In Brazil, the Ibovespa index tumbled nearly 1.8% on Tuesday after a Senate Committee rejected the Government's labour reform bill.

23 January 2017 Threats to Make Britain a Corporate Tax Haven Lack Credibility (My Publications)

Both the Prime Minister and Chancellor last week threatened to cut business taxes aggressively to persuade multinationals to remain in Britain in the event of hard Brexit. But these threats lack credibility, given the likely lingering weakness of the public finances by the time of the U.K.'s departure from the EU and the scale of demographic pressures set to weigh on public spending over the next decade.

23 January 2017 The Fed's Idea of Full Employment is not the Same as Main Street's (My Publications)

Full employment is a deceptively simple-sounding concept. If everyone who wants a job has one, the economy is at full employment, right? Anything less tends to raise eyebrows among non-economists, whether the people who want a job are formally inside the labor force, or have dropped out but would come back if they thought they could find work.

23 January 2017 Chile's Central Bank Cuts Rates, Leaving the Door Open for More (My Publications)

Chile's central bank cut the country's main interest rate by 25bp to 3.25% last Thursday. The easing was expected, as the board adopted a dovish bias last month, after keeping a neutral stance for most of 2016. Last week's move, coupled with the tone of the communiqué, suggests that further easing is coming, as growth continues to disappoint and inflation pressures are easing.

23 January 2017 ECB: Can the Eurozone Consumer Keep Up the Good Work in 2017? (My Publications)

The Eurozone has come under the spotlight for its growing external surplus, but domestic households have been doing the heavy lifting for GDP growth in this business cycle. During the last four quarters, consumers' spending has boosted year-over-year GDP growth by an average of 1.0 percentage points, in contrast to a 0.4pp drag from net exports.

23 June 2017 Fed Officials Cite "Full Employment" but Worry About Recent CPI Data (My Publications)

A couple of Fed speakers this week have described the economy as being at "full employment". Looking at the headline unemployment rate, it's easy to see why they would reach that conclusion.

23 June 2017 PBoC is to the Chinese Yield Curve as Dr Frankenstein is to the Monster (My Publications)

China has undoubtedly been through a credit tightening, commonly explained as the PBoC attempting to engineer a squeeze, to spur on corporate deleveraging.

23 June. 2016 Venezuela is Still in Dire Straits - Straining to Avoid Collapse (My Publications)

2016 has been another terrible year for Venezuela, and we have no hope that the country's economic and political situation will improve in the near-term. Economic mismanagement, authoritarianism, corruption, violent looting and social unrest are the norm.

23 June. 2016 What Would Happen in the Eurozone if the U.K. Left the EU? (My Publications)

People across Europe are growing wary over the failure of governments to foster economic security since the 2008 crisis. Their conclusion increasingly is that the EU is to blame, so their support for EU-sceptic, and even right-wing nationalist, parties has increased accordingly.

23 Mar. 2015 Brazil's Inflation Target is Wishful Thinking for 2015 - Maybe in 2016 (My Publications)

The bad news just keeps coming for Brazil's economy. The mid-month CPI, the IPCA-15 index, rose 1.2% month-to-month in March. Soaring energy prices remain the key contributor to the inflation story in Brazil, pushing up the housing component by 2.8% in March, after a 2.2% increase in February.

23 June. 2016 Brexit Would Trigger a Dollar Surge, But it's an Unlikely Outcome (My Publications)

With most poll-of-poll measures showing a very narrow margin in the U.K. Brexit referendum, while betting markets show a huge majority for "Remain", today brings a live experiment in the idea that the wisdom of crowds is a better guide to elections than peoples' preferences.

23 June. 2015 Oil Firms' Equipment Capex Can't Fall Forever - is it Close to Bottom? (My Publications)

We are intrigued by the idea that the rollover in oil firms' capital spending on equipment might already be over, even as spending on new well-drilling--captured by the still-falling weekly operating rigs data--continues to decline. The evidence to suggest equipment spending has fallen far enough is straightforward.

23 June 2017 Will French Domestic Demand in Rebound in Q2? (My Publications)

The June batch of the French statistical office's business surveys continues to signal a firming cyclical recovery. The aggregate business index rose to cyclical high of 106 in June from a revised 105 in May, continuing an uptrend that began in the middle of 2016.

23 June. 2015 More Waiting For Investors, But a Deal With Greece is Coming (My Publications)

We sympathize greatly with investors' frustration over endless postponements and new "deadlines" in the negotiations between Greece and its creditors. Syriza delivered a proposal for reforms to the EU and the IMF on Monday morning, welcome d as a "positive step in the right direction" by Eurogroup president Dijsselbloem and Economic and Financial Affairs commissioner Moscovici.

23 November. 2016 Brazil's Current Account De cit is Stabilizing, Improvement Ahead (My Publications)

Brazil's external deficit fell marginally in October, but most of the improvement is now likely behind us. The unadjusted current account deficit dipped to USD3.3B, from USD4.3B in October 2015. The trend is stabilizing, with the 12-month total rolling deficit easing to USD22B--that's 1.2% of GDP--from USD23B in September.

23 Oct. 2015 BCB Stuck Between Inflation Risks and Deep, Long Recession (My Publications)

Brazil economic and political outlook is still opaque, but grim, after a vast array of negative news. Impeachment of President Rousseff remains a possibility; the process of fiscal consolidation is messy and politically bloody; rumors that Finance Minister Levy might leave his post next year have intensified; and the latest data showed that the recession worsened in Q3. As a consequence, the BRL and interest rates have been under pressure and we see no clear signs that the turmoil will ease soon.

24 August. 2015 U.S and U.K. Demand, Not China, Drives the Eurozone Trade Surplus (My Publications)

The sell-off in risky assets intensified while we were away, driven by China's decision to loosen its grip on the currency, and looming rate hikes in the U.S. The Chinese move partly shows, we think, the PBoC is uncomfortable pegging to a strengthening dollar amid the unwinding investment boom and weakness in manufacturing.

24 August. 2016 "Breaking News": EZ PMIs Signal Unchanged GDP Growth in Q3 (My Publications)

Yesterday's advance EZ PMI data were virtually unchanged from previous months, yet again. The composite PMI rose trivially to 53.3 in August from 53.2 in July; this means that the index has been almost stable since February. The headline was lifted by a small increase in services, which offset a slight decline in manufacturing.

24 August. 2016 Chainstore Sales Still Pitifully Weak, Despite the Dip in the Dollar (My Publications)

We are a bit troubled by the persistent weakness of the Redbook chain store sales numbers. We aren't ready to sound an alarm, but we are puzzled at the recent declines in the rate of growth of same-store sales to new post-crash lows. On the face of it, the recent performance of the Redbook, shown in our first chart, is terrible. Sales rose only 0.5% in the year to July, during which time we estimate nominal personal incomes rose nearly 3%.

24 August. 2015 The U.S. Will be A Net Gainer from EM Turmoil, Thanks to Cheap Oil (My Publications)

If the plunge in the stock market last week, and especially Friday, was a entirely a reaction to the slowdown in China and its perceived impact on other emerging economies, then it was an over-reaction. Exports to China account for just 0.7% of U.S. GDP; exports to all emerging markets account for 2.1%. So, even a 25% plunge in exports to these economies-- comparable to the meltdown seen as global trade collapsed after the financial crisis--would subtract only 0.5% from U.S. growth over a full year, gross.

24 August. 2015 Better Economic News Fails to Lift LatAm Sentiment - Fx Still Trashed (My Publications)

Mexico's economy continues to withstand several headwinds, especially the sharp currency depreciation--shown in our first chart--falling commodity prices, and the tough external environment. The country is still one of the economic bright spots in the region, thanks to its resilient domestic demand. June retail sales rose 5.4% year-over-year, well above expectations, and up from 4.1% in May. The underlying trend is positive, averaging 4.8% in the second quarter, well above its 2014 pace.

24 August 2017 New Auto Sales Appear to have hit Bottom, Modest Gains in Q4? (My Publications)

Industry estimates for August light vehicle sales suggest that the downshift in sales which began at the turn of the year is over, at least for now.

24 August 2017 Second Estimate of Q2 GDP to Show U.K. Missing out on G7 Boom (My Publications)

We expect today's second estimate of Q2 GDP to confirm that the U.K. has been the slowest growing G7 economy this year.

24 August. 2016 Mexican Consumers' Spending Still Robust, but Set to Slow in H2 (My Publications)

Mexican consumers' spending improved toward the end of Q2. Retail sales jumped by 1.0% month-to-month in June, pushing the year-over-year rate up to 9.4%, from an already solid 8.6% in May. Still, private spending lost some momentum in the second quarter as a whole, rising by 2.5% quarter-on-quarter, after a 3.8% jump in Q1. A modest slowdown in consumers' spending had to come eventually, following surging growth rates in the initial phases of the recovery.

24 August. 2016 The Impetus to Spending From Falling Mortgage Rates Will Wane (My Publications)

The proportion of households' annual incomes absorbed by servicing debt has declined steadily this decade, providing a powerful boost to spending. Indeed, the proportion of annual incomes accounted for by interest payments--mainly on mortgages--edged down a record low of 4.6% in Q1, less than half the share in 2008.

24 Feb. 2016 Mexico's GDP Slowed in Q4, but Services are Still Resilient (My Publications)

Mexico's economy slowed marginally in Q4, due mainly to the challenging external environment, but the domestic economy remains relatively healthy. Real GDP rose 0.5% quarter-on-quarter in Q4, following a 0.8% solid expansion in Q3. Year-over-year growth dipped to 2.5% from 2.8%.

24 Feb. 2016 Mortgage Applications are Rising, Despite the Usual February Drop (My Publications)

If, like us, you have been cheered by the upturn in mortgage applications since November, you don't need to worry about the apparent drop in activity in the past couple of weeks. The numbers don't look great: The MBA's index capturing the number of applications for new mortgages to finance house purchase has dropped from a peak of 237.7 in the third week of January--ignoring September's spike, which was triggered by a regulatory change--to 213.3 last week.

24 February 2017 Did the Warmer-than-Usual January Lift New Home Sales? (My Publications)

New home sales have tended to track the path of mortgage applications over the past year or so, with a lag of a few months. The message for today's January sales numbers, show in our next chart, is that sales likely dipped a bit, to about 525K.

24 Feb. 2016 Downside Surprise from Fourth- Quarter GDP Likely (My Publications)

The second estimate of Q4 GDP, published on Thursday, probably will show that the economy slowed more abruptly last year than previously thought and that it has become very dependent on consumers for momentum.

24 Feb. 2016 Distress Signal from IFO Confirm Downside Risks are Increasing (My Publications)

Yesterday's IFO survey sent a clear signal that the German economy's engine is stuttering. The business climate index fell to a 14-month low of 105.7 in February from 107.3 in January, and the expectations index slumped to 98.8 from 102.3. The weakness was driven by weaker sentiment in manufacturing, which plunged at its fastest rate since November 2008.

24 Feb. 2015 Germany is Growing, But Not as Fast as Implied by the Surge in Q4 (My Publications)

Sentiment in Germany has improved slightly this month with the IFO business climate index rising to 106.8 from 106.7 in January, pushed higher by a small increase in the expectations index.

24 Feb. 2015 Labor Data Set to Change Yellen's Tone at Today's Testimony? (My Publications)

Fed Chair Yellen is a committed believer in the orthodox idea that inflation is largely a cost-push phenomenon, and that the most important cost, by far, is labor. So in order to predict what Dr. Yellen might say about the outlook for Fed policy in her Testimony today--beyond the language of the January FOMC statement--we have to take a view on her assessment of the state of the labor market.

24 August 2017 Markets Will Look in Vain for QE Clues from Mr. Draghi this Week (My Publications)

Eurozone investors are fixed on Mr. Draghi's speaking schedule this week, looking for hints of the ECB's future policy path.

24 April 2017 It Looks Like Mr. Macron Against Mrs. Le Pen in the Second Round (My Publications)

The initial "official estimate" of the French presidential election--released 20.00 CET--suggest that the runoff will be between the centre-right Emmanuel Macron and Front National's Marine Le Pen. This is consistent with opinion polls. The average of five early estimates also suggests that Mr. Macron won the vote with 23.1% of the vote against Mrs. Le Pen's 22.5%.

23 Sept. 2015 Mexico On Hold, Keeping Calm And Still Waiting for the Fed (My Publications)

Banxico left Mexico's benchmark interest rate at a record low of 3% on Monday, maintaining its neutral tone and indicating that the balance of risks is unchanged for both inflation and growth. Policymakers remain confident that inflation will remain under control over the coming months, below 3% over the fourth quarter, but they repeated their message that they are vigilant to any inflation pass though from MXN depreciation into prices.

23 Sept. 2015 Slow Growth in China is a Risk, but Not the Whole Story in the EZ (My Publications)

Expectations that the ECB will respond to weakening growth in China with Additional stimulus mean that survey data will be under particular scrutiny this week. The consensus thinks the Chinese manufacturing PMI--released overnight--will remain weak, but advance PMIs in the Eurozone should confirm that the cyclical recovery remained firm in Q3. We think the composite PMI edged slightly lower to 54.0 in September from 54.3 in August, consistent with real GDP growth of about 0.4% quarter-on-quarter in Q3.

23 September 2016 French Manufacturing Confidence Rebounds Solidly in September (My Publications)

French manufacturers recovered their optimism towards the end of Q3. The headline INSEE manufacturing sentiment index rose to 103 in September, from 101 in August, and the composite business confidence gauge also increased. A rebound in transport equipment firms' own production expectations was the key driver of the recovery.

23 Sept. 2015 Expansions don't die of old age - the Fed kills them, with rates (My Publications)

The theory of spontaneous combustion of the U.S. economy appears to be making something of a comeback, if our inbox and market chat is to be believed. The core idea here is that expansions die of old age, and can be helped on their way to oblivion by factors like falling corporate earnings and rising inventory. The current recovery, which began in June 2009 and is now 63 months old, already looks a bit long-in-the-tooth.

23 Oct. 2015 U.K. Consumer Recovery is Not as Robust as Retail Sales Suggest (My Publications)

On the face of it, the surge in retail sales volumes in September suggests that the U.K. consumer is in fine fettle and can prevent the economic recovery from losing momentum as exporters struggle and government spending retrenches. But the underlying picture is less encouraging and consumers won't be able to sustain the recent robust growth in real spending when inflation revives next year.

23 Oct. 2015 Dovish Mr. Draghi All But Promises More QE in December (My Publications)

Mr. Draghi gave one of his most dovish performances to date yesterday. The central bank kept its main interest rates and the pace of QE unchanged, but reiterated that risks to growth and inflation are tilted to the downside. The president noted further that the existing policies will be "reexamined" in December in light of updated staff projections. It is difficult to see how the downbeat assessment on the economy will change materially from now until December, indicating that further stimulus is likely.

23 Oct. 2015 Manufacturing Slowdown is Set to Intensify as Exports Drop Further (My Publications)

The woes of the manufacturing sector are likely to intensify over the next few months, even if--as we expect--overall economic growth picks up. The core problem is the strong dollar, which is hammering exporters, as our first chart shows. The slowdown in growth in China and other emerging markets is hurting too, but this is part of the reason why the dollar is strong in the first place.

23 September 2016 Is Quantitative Easing Already a Spent Force? (My Publications)

The MPC must be very disappointed by the impact of its £60B government bond purchase programme. Gilt yields initially fell, but they now have returned to the levels seen shortly before the MPC's August meeting, when the purchases were announced.

23 September. 2016 How to Read the Split FOMC's Confusing Thought Processes (My Publications)

Over the past few days we have written about the difference between the Fed's tactics--signalling rate hikes and then choosing not to act in the face of weaker data--and its strategy, which is to normalize rates in the expectation that inflation will head to 2% in the medium-term.

24 April 2017 Past Errors Mean Investors Should Treat the Latest Polls Cautiously (My Publications)

Sterling jumped last week to its highest level against the dollar since last October in response to news that a general election will be held on June 8. Markets are betting that the Conservative Government will sharply increase its majority, enabling Theresa May to ignore Eurosceptic backbenchers when she strikes a deal with the EU.

24 April 2017 Take None of Last Week's Data at Face Value -- Distortions Abound (My Publications)

The gap between the hard and soft data from the industrial economy appeared to widen still further last week. But we are disinclined to take the data--the official industrial production report for March, and the first survey evidence for April--at face value.

24 April 2017 Brazil's Disinflation Continues, Expect Further Rapid Easing Ahead (My Publications)

While we were out, Brazil's data were relatively positive, showing that inflation is still falling quickly and economic activity is stabilizing. The country has made a rapid and convincing escape from high inflation over the past year.

24 Apr. 2015 Cyclical recovery remains on track in the Eurozone Economy (My Publications)

The preliminary April PMIs point to a continuation of the cyclical bounce, despite falling slightly from last month. The composite PMI in the Eurozone fell to 53.5 in April, down from 54.0 in March.

23 September. 2016 The MXN Will Remain a Victim of Collateral Risk This Year (My Publications)

The risk of higher US rates put LatAm currencies under pressure during the first half of the week, before the US FOMC meeting on Wednesday. But they recovered some ground yesterday, following the Fed's decision to leave rates on hold.

24 Apr. 2015 Core capital goods orders heading down through summer (My Publications)

Orders for core capital goods began to fall outright in September last year; we can't blame the severe winter for the 11.1% annualized decline in the fourth quarter of last year. Indeed, the drop in orders in the first quarter will be rather smaller than in the fourth, unless today's March report reveals a catastrophic collapse.

23 Jan. 2015 The ECB gets ahead of the curve with significant QE program (My Publications)

The ECB sent a strong signal yesterday that it is ready to fight deflation with a full range of unconventional monetary policy tools. Asset purchases, including sovereigns, to the tune of €60B per month will begin in March, and will run until end-September 2016, but Mr. Draghi noted that purchases could continue if the ECB is not satisfied with the trajectory of inflation.

23 Jan. 2015 Can Treasuries Focus on the U.S. Economy as Euro Risk Recedes? (My Publications)

The ECB's decision to go all-in and buy sovereign debt has three key consequences for U.S. markets. First, Treasuries will no longer benefit from safe-haven flows, because shorting Eurozone government debt has just become a fantastically risky proposition.

22 March 2017 Greece, the EU and the IMF are Sleepwalking into Crisis... Again (My Publications)

Another deadline has come and gone in the negotiations between Greece and its creditors. This week's meeting between EU finance ministers revealed that the creditors have not seen enough commitments unlock the €7B Greece needs to repay in July. Mr. Tsipras has agreed to energy sector privatizations, and to increase the threshold for income tax exemption.

22 March 2017 Why Are Pending Sales Lagging Existing Sales? (My Publications)

The remarkably strong existing home sales numbers in recent months, relative to the pending home sales index, are hard to explain. In January, total sales reached 5.69M, some 6% higher than the 5.35M implied by December's pending sales index. The gap between the series has widened in recent months, as our first chart shows, and we think the odds now favor a correction in today's February report.

22 March 2017 Improving Fiscal Picture in the South, but Politics Are Key (My Publications)

Growth in South America disappointed last year, but prospects are gradually improving on the back of rising commodity prices and the global manufacturing rebound. These factors will help to ease the region's external and fiscal vulnerabilities, particularly over the second half of the year. On the domestic front, though, the first quarter has proved challenging for some countries, hit by temporary supply factors such as a mine strikes, floods, and wildfires.

22 Mar. 2016 Will Economic Survey Data Step Back From the Brink this Week? (My Publications)

Financial markets and economic survey data have been sending a downbeat message on the Eurozone economy so far this year. The composite PMI has declined to a 12-month low, consumer sentiment has weakened, and national business surveys have also been poor.

22 Mar. 2016 The Upturn in Core Inflation is Real - Don't Focus on the Noise (My Publications)

We pointed out in yesterday's Monitor that Fed Chair Yellen appears to be putting a good deal of faith in the idea that the recent upturn in core inflation is temporary. She argued that "some" of the increase reflects "unusually high readings in categories that tend to be quite volatile without very much significance for inflation over time".

22 June. 2016 Promising Inflation Picture in Brazil, Better News is Coming (My Publications)

Brazil's mid-June inflation reading surprised to the downside, falling to 9.0% from 9.6% in May. The reading essentially confirmed that May's rebound was a pause in the downward trend rather than a resurgence of inflationary pressures. A 1.3% increase in housing prices, including services, was the main driver of mid-June's modest unadjusted 0.4% month-to-month rise in the IPCA-15.

22 June. 2016 Resilient EZ Survey Data Ahead, but Sentiment Would Fall on Brexit (My Publications)

Yesterday's ZEW investor sentiment in Germany shows showed no signs that uncertainty over the U.K. referendum is taking its toll on EZ investors. The expectations index surged to 19.2 in June, from 6.4 in May, the biggest month-to-month jump since January last year, when investors were eagerly expecting the ECB's QE announcement.

22 March 2017 Inflation Will Continue to Exceed the MPC's Forecast (My Publications)

February's consumer price figures provided hard evidence that the import price shock, caused by sterling's depreciation last year, is filtering through faster than the MPC expected. We expect CPI inflation to continue to exceed the forecast set out in February's Inflation Report.

22 May 2017 Have Eurozone Investors Lost Their Appetite for Foreign Debt? (My Publications)

The Eurozone's current account surplus remained close to record highs at the end of Q1, despite dipping slightly to €34.1B in March, from a revised €37.8B in February. A further increase in the services surplus was the key story.

22 May. 2015 Core Disinflation is Over, but Dollar Strength Limits Upside Risk (My Publications)

Core inflation has risen, albeit modestly, in the past two months. The uptick, to 1.8% in March from 1.6% in January, has come as something of a surprise. The narrative in the media and markets remains, as far as we can tell, one of downward pressure on inflation and, still, fear of possible deflation.

22 May. 2015 Solid EZ PMI, but Weak German Manufacturing is Worrying (My Publications)

The composite PMI in the Eurozone continues to edge slightly lower, falling to 53.4 in May from 53.9 in April. A fall in the services index to 53.3, from 54.1 last month offset a modest increase in manufacturing to 52.3 from 52.0 in April.

22 November. 2016 Soybean Exports Still High, but Falling Sharply (My Publications)

Surging soybean exports contributed 0.9 percentage points, gross, to third quarter GDP growth, though the BEA said that this was "mostly" offset by falling inventories of wholesale non-durable goods.

22 May. 2015 Brazil, Overshadowed by Mexico During The First Quarter--Again (My Publications)

Mexico's economy stuttered at the start of the year. Real GDP rose 0.4% quarter-on-quarter in the first quarter, after a solid 0.7% in the fourth quarter. Q1 activity was supported by the services sector, rising 0.5%, offsetting the 0.2% contraction in industrial activity.

22 May 2017 What Does the Path to the Recession of 2019 Look Like? (My Publications)

In recent years only one event has made a material difference to the growth path of the U.S. economy, namely, the plunge in oil prices which began in the summer of 2014. The ensuing collapse in capital spending in the mining sector and everything connected to it, pulled GDP growth down from 2½% in both 2014 and 2015 to just 1.6% in 2016.

22 May 2017 LatAm Markets Under Renewed Pressure, but Hold on, for Now (My Publications)

LatAm's relatively calm market environment has been thrown into disarray over the last few weeks.New fears of a slowdown in China, political turmoil in the U.S. and, most importantly, the serious corruption allegations facing Brazil's President, Michel Temer, have triggered a modest correction in asset markets and have disrupted the region's near-term policy dynamics.

22 May 2017 The Housing Market is Weakening, but Lasting Price Falls aren't Likely (My Publications)

Even the most bullish estate agent in Britain would struggle to put a positive spin on the latest housing market news. The latest levels of the official, Nationwide, and Halifax measures of house prices all are below their peaks.

22 June. 2016 No Real Change from Yellen, but Acknowledgement of Other Views (My Publications)

Dr. Yellen's Testimony yesterday was largely a cut-and-paste job from the FOMC statement last week and her remarks at the press conference. The Fed's core views have not changed since last week, unsurprisingly, and policymakers still expect to raise rates gradually as inflation returns to the target, but will be guided by the incoming data.

22 June. 2015 Why is the Fed so Cautious About the Trajectory of Unemployment? (My Publications)

The closer we look at the Fed's new forecasts, the stranger they seem. The FOMC cut its GDP estimate for this year and now expects the economy to grow by 1.9%--the mid-point of its forecast range--in the year to the fourth quarter. Growth is then expected to pick up to 2.6% next year, before slowing a bit to 2.3% in 2017. Unemployment, however, is expected to fall much less quickly than in the recent past.

22 July. 2015 Chain Store Sales Growth Will Slow Further - Don't be Misled (My Publications)

The downshift in the rate of growth of retail sales, which has caused a degree of consternation among investors, likely has further to run. The Redbook chain store sales survey clearly warned at the turn of the year that a slowdown was coming, but forecasters didn't want hear the warning: Five of the seven non-auto retail sales numbers released this year have undershot consensus.

22 July. 2015 The Economic Recovery in Spain is Real, But Can it Last? (My Publications)

We have to pinch ourselves when looking at economic data in Spain at the moment. Real GDP rose a dizzying 0.9% quarter-on-quarter in Q1, driven by solid gains of 0.7% and 1.1% in consumer's spending and investment respectively. Retail sales and industrial production data indicate GDP growth remained strong in Q2, even if survey data lost some momentum towards the end of the quarter. We will be looking for signs of further moderation in Q3, but surging private deposit growth indicate the cyclical recovery will continue.

22 July. 2016 Copom Holds Rates, Looking for Inflation Expectation to Slow More (My Publications)

Brazil's central bank kept the SELIC rate on hold on Wednesday at 14.25% for the eight consecutive meeting. The decision, which was widely expected, was unanimous, but the post-meeting statement was more detailed and informative than the central bank's June communiqué. We think the shift was intentional; the central bank's new board, headed by Mr. Ilan Goldfajn, is eager to strengthen the institution's credibility and transparency.

22 July. 2015 Brazil's Worst Recession In 25 Years Will Stop The BCB, Soon (My Publications)

Recent economic weakness in Brazil, particularly in the labor market, has strengthened our view that the central bank is close to the end of its painful, but necessary, tightening cycle. We expect the BCB to increase its policy rate by 50bp to 14.25% at next week's monetary policy meeting, and then leave the rate on hold for the foreseeable future.

22 Jan. 2016 Mr. Draghi Won't Give Up On Low Inflation, Promising More Easing (My Publications)

Yesterday's ECB meeting provided no immediate relief to nervous investors. The central bank kept its main interest rates unchanged, and maintained the pace of QE purchases at €60B per month. Mr. Draghi compensated for the lack of action, however, by hinting heavily at further easing at its next meeting. The president emphasized that the ECB's policies will be "reviewed and reconsidered" in light of the March update to the staff projections. Mr. Draghi also admitted that inflation has been "weaker than expected" since the last meeting, and that downside risks have increased further. The central bank does not pre-commit, but we think it is a good bet that the ECB will do more in March.

22 Jan. 2016 Consensus Looks too Sanguine on December Retail Sales (My Publications)

The consensus forecast of a mere 0.3% month-to-month decline in retail sales volumes in December, following the 1.7% surge in November, looks far too timid. We anticipate a much bigger decline, about 1%, bringing volumes back in line with their underlying trend. We can't rule out a bigger fall.

22 Jan. 2016 How Long Will the Inventory Correction Last? (My Publications)

We're expecting a substantial inventory hit in the fourth quarter, subtracting about 1¼ percentage points from headline GDP growth. Businesses very likely added to their inventories in Q4, in real terms, but the we reckon the increase was only about $30B, annualized, compared to the $85.5B jump in the third quarter. Remember, the contribution to GDP growth is the change in the pace of inventory-building between quarters.

22 July. 2016 Emerging Divisions on the MPC Signal Only Modest August Easing (My Publications)

Soon after last week's vote to keep Bank Rate at 0.50%, the MPC's doves were quick to assert that monetary easing is still imminent. A speech by Andy Haldane, published on July 15, called for "... a package of mutually complementary monetary policy easing measures" that should be "delivered promptly and muscularly". Meanwhile, Gertjan Vlieghe, who was alone in voting for a rate cut in July, wrote in The Financial Times last week that he also favours "a package of additional measures" in August.

22 July. 2016 July Payrolls Won't Excite Markets, but Hourly Earnings Should (My Publications)

This is the final Monitor before we hit the beach for two weeks, so want to highlight some of the key data and event risks while we're out. First, we're expecting little more from the FOMC statement than an acknowledgment that the labor market data improved in June. After the May jobs report, the FOMC remarked that "...the pace of improvement in the labor market has slowed".

22 June. 2015 No Grand Deal with Greece, but an Extension Until Year-End is Likely (My Publications)

Discussions between Greece and its creditors drifted further into limbo last week, but we are cautiously optimistic that the Euro Summit meeting later today will yield a deal. The acrimony between Syriza and the main EU and IMF negotiators means, though, that a grand bargain is virtually impossible. We think an extension of the current bail-out until year-end is the most likely outcome.

22 June. 2015 Twin Disaster for Brazil As Inflation Rises and the Recession Deepens (My Publications)

In recent weeks Brazilian central bank officials have reinforced their message that they will continue fighting inflation with "determination and perseverance". CPI inflation is failing to subside, at least at the headline level, where the latest readings are very disappointing, and expectations have remained stubbornly high. And the BRL has fallen 13% year-to-date, posing further inflation threats ahead. All these factors mean that the BCB will increase its main interest rate yet again in July.

22 June 2017 Falling Oil Prices will hit Mining Capex, but no Repeat of 2014 to 16 (My Publications)

The renewed slide in oil prices in recent weeks will crimp capital spending, at the margin, but it is not a macroeconomic threat on the scale of the 2014-to-16 hit.

22 June 2017 Asian Exports Remain Sturdy in Q2, but the Outlook is Cloudy (My Publications)

Korea's preliminary export numbers rebounded quite spectacularly in June, with growth at 24.4% year-on-year, compared with just 3.4% in May. This reading is important as it comes early in the monthly data cycle. Korea's position close to the beginning of the global supply chain, moreover, means its exports often lead shifts in global trade.

22 July. 2016 The ECB Tells Investors to go on Holiday and Come Back in Q3 (My Publications)

As widely expected, the ECB held fire yesterday. The central bank left its main refi rate unchanged at zero, and also kept the pace of QE unchanged at €80B a month. The deposit and marginal lending facility rates were also left unchanged at -0.4% and 0.25% respectively. The formal end-date of QE is still Q1 2017, but the press release repeated the message that QE can continue "beyond [Q1 2017], if necessary, and in any case until it sees a sustained adjustment in the path of inflation consistent with its inflation aim."

22 June 2017 Are we headed toward an extension of the U.K.'s EU membership? (My Publications)

The EU has had a better start to the Brexit negotiations than its counterpart across the Channel. The risk of disagreement within the EU on the details with of the U.K.'s exit is high, but the Continent has presented a united front so far, mainly because Mr. Macron and Mrs. Merkel agree on the broad objectives. They have no interest in punishing the U.K., but they are also keen to show that exiting the EU has costs for a country which leaves.

22 November. 2016 Sweeteners for the 'JAMs' Will Be Spread Thinly on Wednesday (My Publications)

In recent public appearances, the Chancellor has made a concerted effort to downplay expectations of fiscal loosening in Wednesday's Autumn statement. On Sunday, he labelled the deficit "eye-wateringly" large and he warned that he was "highly constrained".

22 November. 2016 Trade Data are Improving in the Andes... Better Still in 2017? (My Publications)

Colombia's trade deficit continued to narrow in Q3; a postive development now that EM are back in the firing line. Assuming no revisions, the marginal year-over-year dip in the September trade deficit means that the third quarter deficit was USD3.1B, down from US4.6B a year ago.

23 August. 2016 Rental Inflation Set to Rise Further as Vacancies Hit a New Cycle Low (My Publications)

This week brings home sales data for July, which we expect will be mixed. New home sales likely rose a bit, but we are pretty confident that existing home sales will be reported down, following four straight gains. We're still expecting a clear positive contribution to GDP growth from housing construction in the third quarter, but from the Fed's perspective the more immediate threat comes from the rate of increase of housing rents, rather than the pace of home sales.

23 August. 2016 The Inventory Cycle is About to Turn, Worsening the Downturn (My Publications)

Whether the economy enters recession will hinge more on corporate behaviour than on consumers. Household spending accounts for about two thirds of GDP, but it is a relatively stable component of demand. By contrast, business investment and inventories--which are often overlooked--are prone to wild swings.

23 Feb. 2015 Deal between EU and Greece will avert disaster in the short run (My Publications)

The Eurogroup finally agreed on a four-month financing extension for Greece late Friday evening, conditional on Syriza presenting a satisfactory list of reforms later today. At the press conference, Eurogroup President Dijsselboem emphasized that commitments always come before money.

23 August. 2016 Mexico Struggled at the end of the First Half - Will it Rebound? (My Publications)

The Mexican economy shrank by 0.2% quarter-on-quarter in Q2, according to the final GDP report, a tenth better than the preliminary reading. The year-over-year rate rose marginally to 2.5% from 2.4% in Q1. But the year-over-year data are not seasonally adjusted, understating the slowdown in the first half of the year, as shown in our first chart.

23 August. 2016 EZ PMIs to Signal Stable GDP Growth in the Third Quarter (My Publications)

Today's market attention will be focused on the advance August PMI data in the major EZ economies. We think the composite PMI in the euro area was unchanged at 53.2 in August, consistent with stable GDP growth of 0.3%-to-0.4% quarter-on-quarter in Q3. The signal of "stability" in the Eurozone business cycle has been consistently relayed by the PMI since the beginning of the year.

23 August 2017 Mexican Economy was Firm in H1, H2 Will be Soft, but 2018 Better (My Publications)

Yesterday's detailed Mexican GDP report confirmed that growth was relatively resilient in Q2, despite the lagged effect of external and domestic headwinds.

23 August 2017 New Home Sales set for Cycle Highs, but Only Temporarily (My Publications)

The level of new home sales is likely to hit new cycle highs over the next few months, with a decent chance that today's July report will show sales at their highest level since late 2007.

23 Feb. 2015 Mexico's GDP Rising at the Fastest Pace in Two Years - More to Come? (My Publications)

Punished by the global economic slowdown depressing commodity prices, the Mexican economy is now making a gradual comeback, thanks to the continuing strength of its main trading partner, increasing public expenditure on key infrastructure projects, and accommodative monetary policy.

23 Feb. 2015 What if the Terminal Rate is Higher than the Fed Thinks? (My Publications)

A thought, ahead of Chair Yellen's Testimony tomorrow. Conventional wisdom has it that the terminal Fed funds rate in this cycle will b e much lower than in the past--the Fed thinks 3¾%, compared to 5.25% in 2007, and 6.5% in 2000--reflecting the long-lasting legacy of the crash, particularly in household balance sheets.

23 February 2017 Q4 GDP Flatters to Deceive, a Consumer-led Slowdown is Coming (My Publications)

Taken at face value, the GDP data continue to suggest that the Brexit vote has had no adverse consequences for the economy. The official estimate of quarter-on-quarter GDP growth in Q4 was revised up yesterday to 0.7%, from 0.6%. The revision had been flagged earlier this month by stronger industrial production and construction output figures.

23 February 2017 The IFO Agrees with the PMI: German GDP Growth to Rise in Q1 (My Publications)

Yesterday's German IFO survey broadly confirmed the bullish message from the PMIs earlier this week. The headline business climate index rose to 111.0 in February from a revised 109.9 in January, boosted by increases in both the current assessment and the expectations index.

23 Jan. 2015 Brazil Continues to Combat Expectations for Surging Inflation (My Publications)

Brazil's central bank is finally decisively facing its demon, persistently high inflation. The eight-member policy board, known as Copom, decided unanimously on Wednesday to increase the Selic rate by 50bp to 12.25%, the highest level in more than three years, in line with the consensus.

23 February 2017 Fiscal Easing Could Boost Growth Substantially, but not for Long (My Publications)

The White House budget proposals, which Roll Call says will be released in limited form on March 14, will include forecasts of sustained real GDP growth in a 3-to-3.5% range, according to an array of recent press reports.

23 Feb. 2016 Would the MPC Just Let Sterling Drop Like a Stone? (My Publications)

Sterling will be under the spotlight again today when four members of the Monetary Policy Committee, including Governor Mark Carney, answer questions from the Treasury Select Committee about the recent Inflation Report.

23 Feb. 2016 Falling Stock Prices Won't Kill Consumers Enjoying Cheap Gas (My Publications)

Dire warnings that the plunge in s tock prices would depress consumers' confidence and spending have not come to pass. It's too soon to draw a definitive conclusion--the S&P hit its low as recently as the 11th--but peoples' end-February brokerage statements are on track to look less horrific than the end-January numbers, provided the market doesn't swoon again over the next few days.

23 Feb. 2016 PMIs Suggest Risks to Q1 EZ GDP Growth are Tilted to the Downside (My Publications)

Advance PMI data yesterday supported our suspicion that Q1 economic survey data will paint a picture of slowing growth in the Eurozone economy. The composite PMI in the Eurozone fell to a 13-month low of 52.7 in February from 53.6 in January, driven by declines in both the French and German advance data.

23 August 2017 Fiscal Restraint, not a Surging Economy, Drove July's Surplus (My Publications)

Yesterday's public finance figures showed that the public sector, excluding public sector banks, ran a surplus of £0.2B in July, a modest improvement on borrowing of £0.4B a year ago.

23 August 2017 All Systems Go for Italy's Economy, but Don't ask About the Long Run (My Publications)

The performance of Italy's economy in the first half of 2017 proves that the strengthening euro area recovery is a tide lifting all the r egion's boats.

22 Sept. 2015 Moody's Fires a Shot Across the Bow on French Sovereign Debt (My Publications)

Mr. Draghi's pledge in 2012 to do "whatever it takes to preserve the euro," and QE have stymied sovereign debt risk in the euro area. At the same time, the EU's relaxed position over debt sustainability was highlighted earlier this year by the Commission's decision to give France two more years to get its deficit below 3% of GDP. But Moody's downgrade of the French government bond rating last week to Aa2 from Aa1 serves as a gentle reminder to investors of the underlying fundamentals.

22 Sept. 2015 Nominal Retail Sales Set to Slow Further, Thanks to the Dollar (My Publications)

The rate of growth of chain store sales has levelled off in recent months, after slowing dramatically in the first four months of this year, almost certainly in response to falling prices for dollar-sensitive goods like household electronics. In the fourth quarter of last year, the Redbook recorded same-store sales growth averaging 4.3%, but that has slowed to a 1-to-2% range since April.

22 September 2016 Poor Borrowing Trend Reduces Scope for Stimulus in November (My Publications)

Public borrowing continues to falling at a very slow pace, despite the major fiscal consolidation implemented this year. Public sector net borrowing excluding public sector banks--PSNB ex.--was £10.5B in August, only 8.1% less than the £11.5B borrowed a year ago.

22 Oct. 2015 Will Simply Holding The E.U. Referendum Harm The Economy? (My Publications)

Discussion about whether the U.K. would be better off voting to leave the European Union in the forthcoming referendum is rarely out of the press, raising the question of whether simply holding the national vote could damage the economy even if the U.K. votes for the status quo in the end.

22 Oct. 2015 Markets Will Have to Settle for Just Dovish ECB Rhetoric Today (My Publications)

Investors looking for more QE and rate cuts will be disappointed by ECB inaction today. We think the Central Bank will keep its main interest rates unchanged, and also maintain the pace of asset purchases at €60B a month. We do, however, look for a slight change in language, hinting that QE is likely to continue beyond September next year.

22 November. 2016 Will November EZ Survey Data Take a Step Back this Week? (My Publications)

November data for most of the major EZ business and consumer surveys arrive this week. We doubt the reports will change our view that EZ GDP growth likely will remain steady at about 1.6% year-over-year in Q4. But appearances matter, and risks are tilted to the downside in some of the main surveys, after jumps in October.

22 Oct. 2015 Claims Signal Payroll Data are Flawed, or Labor Pool Has Run Dry (My Publications)

The headline payroll number each month is the difference between the flow of gross hirings and the flow of gross firings. The JOLTS report provides both numbers, with a lag, but we can track the firing side of the equation via the jobless claims numbers. Claims are volatile week-to-week, thanks to the impossibility of ironing out every seasonal fluctuation in such short-term data, but the underlying trend is an accurate measure. The claims data are based on an actual count of all the people making claims, not a sample survey like most other data. That means you'll never be blindsided by outrageous revisions, turning the story upside-down.

22 September 2016 Yield Curve Control Will be Tricky to Implement in the Eurozone (My Publications)

We tend to keep a close eye on monetary policy initiatives in Japan, as the BOJ's fight to spur inflation in a rapidly ageing economy resembles the challenge faced by the ECB.

22 September 2017 Don't Expect a Giveaway Budget, Despite low Borrowing this year (My Publications)

Public borrowing was below consensus expectations in August, fuelling speculation that the Chancellor might pare back the remaining fiscal tightening in the Autumn Budget on November 22.

23 Apr. 2015 Cyclical recovery in the Eurozone will likely moderate in Q2, slightly (My Publications)

The preliminary April PMIs due today will provide the first economic sentiment data for Q2, and likely will point to a continuation of the cyclical recovery. We think the composite PMI was unchanged at 54.0 in April, driven by a small gain in manufacturing offset by a slight decline in services.

23 Apr. 2015 More signs of life in the housing market - This time, for real? (My Publications)

New home sales performed better during the winter than any other indicator of economic activity. At least, we think they did. The mar gin of error in the monthly numbers is enormous, typically more than +/-15%.

22 September. 2016 December Fed Hike Still Most Likely (My Publications)

The hawks clearly tried hard to persuade their more nervous colleagues to raise rates yesterday. In the end, though, they had to make do with shifting the language of the FOMC statement, which did not read like it had come after a run of weaker data.

22 September 2017 The Earthquake's Economic Hit Appears to be Modest (My Publications)

Before this week's earthquake, the resilience of Mexico's economy in the face of a volatile and challenging global backdrop owed much to the strength of domestic demand, especially private consumption.

22 September 2017 How far will the Hurricanes Depress September Payrolls? (My Publications)

The trend rate of increase in private payrolls in the months before Hurricane Katrina in 2005 was about 240K per month.

22 September 2017 Policy Divergence is Back on as the BoJ Stands Pat (My Publications)

The BoJ kept policy unchanged yesterday, with the policy balance rate remaining at -0.1% and the 10-year yield target remaining around zero.

28 November. 2016 Household Consumption in France Will Recover Lost Ground in Q4 (My Publications)

The outlook for French consumers' spending improved this month, at the margin. The headline consumer sentiment index was unchanged at 98 in November, but most forward-looking indicators rose. Consumers' spending in was flat in Q2 and Q3, following a 1.1% jump in the first quarter.

28 Oct. 2015 A Clear Message from M1: The Cyclical Recovery Persists (My Publications)

Monetary conditions in the Eurozone continue to send a bullish message on GDP growth, and indicate an ongoing, but slow, improvement in credit growth. Broad money growth--M3--was unchanged at 4.9% year-over-year in September, after a trivial 0.1% upward revision of last month's data. The increase continues to be driven by surging narrow money rising 11.7% in September from 11.5% in August, boosted by overnight deposit growth offsetting a slight decline in currency in circulation.

7 Apr. 2016 The Oil Industry Won't Disappear - the Contraction Will End Soon (My Publications)

If the current rate of contraction continues, the U.S. onshore oil industry will cease to exist in the third week of January next year. Over the past six weeks, the number of operating rigs has dropped by an average of 8.5, and 362 rigs were running last week. At the peak, in early October 2014--just 18 months ago--the rig count reached 1,609.

7 April 2017 Brace for Disappointing Industrial Production Data Today (My Publications)

Manufacturing orders in Germany recovered some ground in the middle of Q1, following the plunge at the beginning of the year. Factory orders rose 3.4% in February, pushing the year-over-year rate up to +4.6% from a revised 0.0% in January.

7 April 2017 Mexico Sentiment is on the Mend as U.S. Threats are Easing, for Now (My Publications)

Sentiment has been improving gradually in Mexico in recent weeks, reversing some of the severe deterioration immediately after the U.S. presidential election. Year-to-date, the MXN has risen 10.3% against the USD and the stock market is up by almost 8%. We think that less protectionist U.S. trade policy rhetoric than expected immediately after the election explains the turnaround.

7 Apr. 2016 Real Economic Data Point to an Upbeat German GDP Story in Q1 (My Publications)

Yesterday's German industrial production data were poor, but better than we expected. Output fell 0.5% month-to-month in February, pushing annual growth down to 1.3% from a revised 1.8% in January. In addition, net revisions to the month-to-month data were a hefty -1.0%, but this is not enough to change the story of a Q1 rebound in industrial production.

7 Apr. 2016 Peruvian Presidential Race Faces Rising Last-Minute Uncertainty (My Publications)

Ms Keiko Fujimori, the candidate of Peru's conservative Fuerza Popular party, seems on course to win the first round of the presidential election this Sunday, April 10. According to the latest Ipsos poll, the daughter of former President Alberto Fujimori continues to lead the race, with the support or about 34% of voters.

6 September. 2016 Too Soon to Breathe a Sigh of Relief on Recession Risk (My Publications)

The improvement in the August services PMI has generated hyperbolic headlines suggesting the U.K. is on a tear despite the Brexit vote. Taken literally, however, the PMIs suggest that the revival in business activity in August only partially reversed July's decline. Meanwhile, the impact of sterling's sharp depreciation on the purchasing power of firms and consumers has only just begun to be felt.

7 Apr. 2015 The noose tightens on Greece and its creditors as default looms (My Publications)

Negotiations between Greece and its creditors will come to a head in the next few weeks as the country faces imminent risk of running out of money. Following a meeting with the head of the IMF, Christine Lagarde, on Sunday Greek finance minister Faroufakis assured investors that the country intends to make a scheduled €450M payment to the fund on Thursday.

7 April 2017 Mixed Signals for March Payrolls, but 200K Seems a Fair Bet (My Publications)

Everything but the weather points to a strong headline payroll number for March. Our composite leading payroll indicator has signalled robust job growth since last fall, and the message for March is very clear.

7 April 2017 What Place will QE have in the Bank's Future Policy Mix? (My Publications)

Markets were jolted yesterday by news that the U.S. Fed is mulling ending, or at least slowing, the reinvestment of Treasuries and mortgage-backed securities later this year. Such a move would reduce liquidity in global markets that has underpinned soaring equity prices in recent years.

7 Dec. 2015 German Factory Orders are Slowing, Despite October's Jump (My Publications)

Manufacturing activity in Germany rebounded at the start of the fourth quarter, following a miserable Q3. New orders jumped 1.8% month-to-month in October, lifted by increases in consumer and capital goods orders, both domestic and export. But the year-over-year rate fell to -1.4%, from a revised -0.7% in September, due to unfavorable base effects, and the three-month trend remained below zero. Our first chart shows that non-Eurozone export orders are the key drag, with export orders to other euro area economies doing significantly better.

7 Dec. 2015 Mexico's Leading Indicators Point to a Solid Fourth Quarter (My Publications)

Mexico's economy is not accelerating, but it is holding up well in extremely difficult circumstances for EM. Growth is reasonably healthy, inflation is under control and the labor market is resilient. In short, Mexico is a success story, given the backdrop of plunging oil prices. The contrast with the disaster in Brazil is stark. Last week's survey and hard data continued to tell an upbeat story on Mexico's economy. The IMEF manufacturing index, Mexico's PMI, rose to 52.1 in November up from 51.6 in October, lifted mainly by gains in the employment and deliveries indexes.

7 Dec. 2015 Will the MPC Attempt to Steer the Markets to an Earlier Hike Again? (My Publications)

December's meeting of the Monetary Policy Committee is likely to be a quiet affair in comparison to this month's pivotal ECB and Fed meetings. It's hard to see what news would have persuaded other members to join Ian McCafferty in voting to raise interest rates this month. The MPC might comment in the minutes to try to reverse the further fall in market interest rate expectations since its previous meeting, when it already thought they were too low. But the potency of any moderately hawkish guidance may be diluted by further strident comments from the Committee's doves.

7 Dec. 2015 After the First Hike, Next Week, Wage Gains Will Set the Pace (My Publications)

We're guessing Fed Chair Yellen would have preferred to have another acceleration in hourly earnings and a dip in the unemployment rate along side the hefty 211K leap in November payrolls, but no matter. At its October meeting, the Fed wanted to see "some further improvement in the labor market", and by any reasonable standard a 509K total increase in payrolls in two months fits the bill.

7 August 2017 While we were Out... (My Publications)

...The Fed did nothing, surprising no-one; the labor market tightened further; the housing market tracked sideways; survey data mostly slipped a bit; and oil prices jumped nearly $4, briefly nudging above $50 for the first time since May.

7 August 2017 Brazil's Central Bank Set to Ease to 7.25% or Lower by Year-End (My Publications)

While we were out, Brazil's economic and political situation continued to improve, allowing the BCB to cut the Selic rate by 100bp to 9.25% at its July 26th meeting, matching expectations.

7 August 2017 Japan's Wage Drop not so Damaging as Regular Wages Rise (My Publications)

Japanese average cash earnings posted a surprise drop of 0.4% year-over-year in June, down from 0.6% in May and sharply below the consensus for a rise of 0.5%. The decline was driven by a fall in the June bonus, by 1.5%.

6 September. 2016 Payrolls Will Revive, but not Immediately, Ignore "So" AHE (My Publications)

Over the past six months, payroll growth has averaged exactly 150K. Over the previous six months, the average increase was 230K. And in the six months to August 2015--a fairer comparison, because the fourth quarter numbers enjoy very favorable seasonals, flattering the data--payroll growth averaged 197K.

6 September. 2016 German Services PMI Taints an Otherwise Strong Day for EZ Data (My Publications)

Yesterday's EZ PMI data surprised to the downside. The composite PMI in the euro area dipped to 52.9 in August, from 53.2 in July, below the initial estimate 53.3. The headline was marred by weakness in the German services PMI, which crashed to a 40-month low of 51.7, from 54.4 in July.

6 Nov. 2015 Brazil's Industrial Recession Deepens - Chile's Recovery in Place (My Publications)

Brazil's industrial sector continues to suffer, despite September's report surprising marginally on the upside. Output contracted 1.3% month-to-month in September, after a 0.9% fall in August, pushing the year over-year rate down to -10.9% down from -8.8% in August. This is the biggest drop since April 2009. Output has fallen an eye-popping -7.4% year-to-date, and in the third quarter alone activity contracted by 3.2% quarter-on-quarter, in line with our vie w for a 1.2% contraction in real GDP for the third quarter.

6 Nov. 2015 Markets Ignore Inflation Report's Hawkish Undertones (My Publications)

Markets have interpreted the Monetary Policy Committee's "Super Thursday" releases as an endorsement of their view that interest rates will remain on hold for another year. We think the Committee's communications were more nuanced and believe the door is still open to an interest rate rise in the second quarter of next year.

6 Nov. 2015 Payroll Uncertainty (Even) Greater than Usual in October (My Publications)

Any model of payrolls based on the usual indicators--jobless claims, ISM hiring, NFIB hiring, and other sundry surveys--right now points to payroll growth at 250K or better. Indeed, the ISM non-manufacturing report on Wednesday is consistent with payroll growth closer to 400K, and the lagged NFIB hiring intentions number points to 300K. Yet the consensus forecast for today's October report is just 182K. Why so timid?

6 May. The MPC Won't Step in to Revive the Economy this Time (My Publications)

The latest U.K. PMIs were unambiguously dreadful. The manufacturing, construction and services PMIs all fell in April, and their weighted average points to quarter-on-quarter growth in GDP slowing to zero in Q2, from 0.4% in Q1. The U .K.'s composite PMI also undershot the Eurozone's for the second month this year.

6 May. 2016 Will the Periphery's Resilience to Political Risks Persist? (My Publications)

Political risks in the periphery have simmered constantly during this cyclical recovery, but they have increased recently. In Italy, the government is scrambling to find a solution to rid its ailing banking sector of bad loans. But recapitalisation via a bad bank is not possible under new EU rules.

6 May. 2016 Chile's Economy Picks Up in Q1, but no Sustained Acceleration (My Publications)

Economic growth in Chile picked up in Q1, but the recovery remains disappointingly weak, due to both global and domestic headwinds. The latest Imacec index, a proxy for GDP, rose just 2.1% year-over-year in March, slowing from a 2.8% gain in February. Assuming no revisions next month, economic activity rose 1.2% quarter-on-quarter in Q1, better than the 0.9% increase in Q4. These data points to a modest pick-up in GDP growth in Q1, to 1.8% year-over-year, from 1.3% in Q4.

6 May. 2016 Payrolls Likely On Trend - Watch Out for a Rebound in Wages (My Publications)

Barring some sort of out-of-the-blue shock, we are much more interested in the hourly earnings data today than the headline payroll number. The key question is the extent to which wages rebound after being depressed by a persistent calendar quirk in both February and March.

6 Nov. 2015 Woeful German Manufacturing Data Curbs Optimism for Q4 (My Publications)

German manufacturing data continues to offer a sobering counterbalance to strong services and consumers' spending data. New orders plunged 1.7% month-to-month in September, well below the consensus, pushing the year-over-year rate down to a 1.0% fall from a revised 1.7% increase in August. These data are very volatile, and revisions probably will lift the final number slightly next month, but the evidence points to clear risks of a further decline in the underlying trend of production.

6 Oct. 2015 Stable GDP Growth in Q3, due to Firmer Consumers' Spending? (My Publications)

The PMI survey points to a slight loss of momentum in Eurozone growth towards the end of Q3. The composite index fell to 53.6 in September from 54.3 in August, trivially lower than the initial estimate of 53.9. This is not enough to move the needle on the survey's signal for Q3 GDP growth, though; our first chart shows it pointing to stable growth of 0.4% quarter-on-quarter.

6 September 2017 Harvey set to Distort Chainstore, MBA Data Today, but no hit on ISM (My Publications)

Last Friday's August auto sales numbers were overshadowed by the below-consensus payroll report and the six-year high in the ISM manufacturing index, but they are the first data to reflect the impact of Hurricane Harvey.

6 September 2017 Will the Brazilian Industrial Sector Continue to Perform Strongly? (My Publications)

Brazil's industrial sector came roaring back at the start of Q3, following a poor end to Q2. Industrial production jumped 0.8% month-to-month in July, driving the year-over-year rate higher to 2.5%, from 0.5% in June and just 0.1% on average in Q2.

6 September. 2016 Chile's Economy Still Under Strain, but Recession Will be Avoided (My Publications)

Chile's economy remains under pressure, at least temporarily. After signs of recovery in Q1, activity deteriorated in Q2 and at the start of the third quarter. The sluggish global economy--especially China, Chile's main trading partner--is exacerbating the domestic slowdown, hit by low business and consumer confidence.

6 September 2017 EZ Consumers' Spending Likely will Slow in Q3, but don't Panic (My Publications)

EZ consumers' spending slowed at the start of Q3. Retail sales slipped 0.3% month-to-month in July, pushing the year-over-year rate down to 2.6% from an upwardly revised 3.3% in June.

6 September 2017 Chinese Service PMI Still Stable but Glosses Over Subsector Divergence (My Publications)

The services sector in China is notoriously difficult to track, with the major aggregate statistics published only on a quarterly or even annual basis.

6 Oct. 2015 Will the Industrial Slowdown Drag Down the Rest of the Economy? (My Publications)

The elevated September ISM non-manufacturing index reported yesterday--it dipped to 56.9 but remains very high by historical standards--again served to underscore the depth of the bifurcation in the economy. The services sector, boosted by the collapse in gasoline prices and the strong dollar, is massively outperforming the woebegone manufacturing sector.

6 September 2017 August's PMIs Show the Economy is too Brittle to Handle a Rate Hike (My Publications)

Our conviction that the economy continues to grow at a snail's pace increased yesterday following the release of August's Markit/CIPS services survey.

7 December 2016 Brazil's Copom is Ready to Act Boldly, but Politics Pose Risks (My Publications)

In Brazil, the minutes of the Copom's November meeting, released yesterday, are consistent with our forecast for a 50bp rate cut in January. At its last two meetings, the BCB cut the Selic rate by only 25bp, to 13.75%, amid concerns about services inflation, global uncertainty, and the Fed's likely rate hike next week.

7 December. 2016 Durable Goods Orders Plunged Last Month, but the Core is Stabilizing (My Publications)

Unless Boeing received a huge aircraft order on November 30, we can now be pretty sure that most of October's 4.6% leap in headline durable goods orders reversed last month. Through November 29, Boeing booked orders for 34 aircraft, compared to 85 in October. Moreover, the bulk of the orders were for relatively low value 737s, whereas the October numbers were boosted by a surge in orders for 787s, whose list price is about three times higher.

7 June. 2016 Are Eurozone Equity Markets Complacent About Brexit? (My Publications)

Recent polls in the U.K. have reminded markets that the vote is too close to call at this point, but investors in the Eurozone appear unfazed, so far. The headline Sentix index rose to 9.9 in June, from 6.2 in May, lifted by the expectations index, which increased to a six-month high of 10.0 from 5.5 in May.

7 June. 2016 Atlanta Fed Wage Tracker Hits Seven-Year High - Does it Matter? (My Publications)

The headline hourly earnings data for May were dull, showing the year-over-year rate unchanged at 2.5%. That's up from 2.1% in the year to May 2015, but it's not an alarming rate of increase. But the Atlanta Fed's median hourly earnings data, which track the wages of individuals from year-to-year, show wages up 3.4% year-over-year, the fastest rate of increase since February 2009.

7 March 2017 Can Italy's Economy Overcome Weak Real Wage Growth in 2017? (My Publications)

The Italian economy slowed at the end 2017, and it continues to underperform other major EZ economies. Real GDP rose 0.2% quarter-on-quarter in Q4, a bit slower than the 0.3% gain in Q3, pushing full-year growth up to a modest 1.0%. This compares poorly, though, with growth of 1.6% in the euro area as a whole.

7 June 2017 The Slowing in Consumer Credit Demand is Good News (My Publications)

Today's consumer credit report for April likely will show that the stock of debt rose by about $15B, a bit below the recent trend. The monthly numbers are volatile, but the underlying trend rate of increase has eased over the past year-and-a-half, as our first chart shows. The slowdown has been concentrated in the non-revolving component, though the rate of growth of the stock of revolving credit--mostly credit cards--has dipped recently, perhaps because of weather effects and the late Easter.

7 June 2017 Sentiment Indicators Signal Better Times for the Mexican Economy (My Publications)

Mexico's survey data have improved significantly over the last few months, reaching levels last since before Donald Trump won the U.S. election in November. This suggest that the economy is in much better shape than feared earlier this year. Consumer confidence, for instance, has continued its recovery.

7 June 2017 A Tory Victory Wouldn't Necessarily Boost Sterling this Time (My Publications)

Predicting which way markets would move in response to potential general election outcomes has been relatively straightforward in the past. But the usual rules of thumb will not apply when the election results filter through after polling stations close on Thursday evening.

7 June 2017 How to Prepare for a Eurozone Bond Market Without the ECB (My Publications)

Predicting which way markets would move in response to potential general election outcomes has been relatively straightforward in the past. But the usual rules of thumb will not apply when the election results filter through after polling stations close on Thursday evening.

7 March 2017 Mexicans' Confidence Rebounds, Partly, but the Trend is Still Poor (My Publications)

Mexican asset prices and sentiment have been helped in recent weeks by less-harsh rhetoric from the Trump administration. The headline consumer confidence for February, reported yesterday, rose to 75.7 from 68.5 in January; all the sub-components improved. The data are not seasonally adjusted, so most local analysts look at the data in year-over-year terms.

7 March 2017 The Chancellor Isn't Bluffing, This Will Be a Thrifty Budget (My Publications)

If the Chancellor is true to his word, Wednesday's Budget will be a pedestrian affair with few major policy changes designed to prevent the economy from slowing this year. In an article in The Sunday Times, Philip Hammond asserted that "we cannot take our foot off the pedal" in the mission to eliminate the budget deficit by the end of the next parliament.

7 November. 2016 U.S. Election is the Big Threat for LatAm Markets (My Publications)

The U.S. Presidential election will set the tone for LatAm's markets this week. Hillary Clinton's dwindling lead over Donald Trump in recent polls has unleashed pressure on EM assets.

7 Oct. 2015 Are Payrolls Slowing Because There's No-one Left to Hire? (My Publications)

In the absence of market-moving data today, we want to take a closer look at the labor market, and, specifically, the idea that payroll growth is slowing because firms cannot find staff they consider suitably qualified for the jobs available. Every indicator of labor demand, with the sole exception of manufacturing-specific surveys, is consistent with very rapid payroll growth, well in excess of 200K per month.

7 Oct. 2015 Banxico Confirms No Rush to Hike Interest Rates, With the Fed on Hold (My Publications)

The September Banxico minutes restated that the U.S. Fed's first interest rate hike is the key event awaited by Mexican policymakers. Banxico's board of governors voted unanimously on September 21st to keep the main interest rate at a record-low 3%.

7 November. 2016 Is Sterling Now Back on a Sustained Recovery Path? (My Publications)

Upbeat PMIs, the MPC's abandonment of its easing bias and the High Court ruling that only a parliamentary vote--and not the Prime Minister--can trigger Article 50, all helped sterling to make up some lost ground last week.

7 November. 2016 Wage Gains Will Focus Fed Minds (My Publications)

If the Fed needed further encouragement to raise rates next month, it arrived Friday in the form of solid jobs numbers, a new cycle low for the broad unemployment rate, and a new cycle high for wage growth.

7 March 2017 Why has Spending not Faltered After Tax Refunds were Delayed? (My Publications)

The delay in the processing of personal income tax refunds this year appears not to have had any adverse impact on retail sales, so far. Indeed, the Redbook chainstore sales survey suggests that sales have accelerated over the past few weeks.

7 November. 2016 EZ Growth is Stable, but Inflation is Rising (My Publications)

The two major EZ economic reports released while we were away conformed to the consensus. Advance data suggest that real GDP in the euro area rose 0.3% quarter-on-quarter in Q3, the same pace as in Q2, and the year-over-year rate was similarly unchanged at 1.6%.

7 July. 2016 June ADP Set to be Constrained by Weak May Payroll Data (My Publications)

We have argued frequently that the ADP employment report is not a reliable advance payroll indicator--see our Monitor of May 4, for example-- so for now we'll just note that it is generated by a regression model which includes a host of nonpayroll data and the official jobs numbers from the previous month. It is not based solely on reports from employers who use ADP for payroll processing, despite ADP's best efforts to insinuate that it is.

7 July. 2016 German Manufacturing Likely Slipped in the Second Quarter (My Publications)

German factory orders struggled in the second quarter. New orders were unchanged month-to-month in May, a poor headline following the revised 1.9% plunge in April. The year-over-year rate rose to -0.2%, from a revised -0.4% in April. The month-to-month rate was depressed by a big fall in domestic orders, which offset a rise in export orders.

7 February 2017 January's Rise in Car Sales is Misleading, it won't be Sustained (My Publications)

The 5% year-over-year increase in private new car registrations in January ended a nine-month period of falling sales. January's increase, however, is unlikely to be a bellwether for car sales over the whole year, or for the strength of consumer spending more generally.

7 Jan. 2015 - Oil Will Flatter Headline Trade Data, But Won't Stop Q4 Hit (My Publications)

The plunge in oil prices me ans that U.S. oil imports are set to drop much further over the next few months, flattering the headline trade deficit. The trend in imports has been downwards since early 2013, as our first chart shows, reflecting the surge in domestic production. That surge is now over, but as falling prices become the dominant factor in the oil import story, the trend will remain downwards.

7 Jan. 2015 Low Inflation to Offer Significant Boost to Real GDP in the Eurozone (My Publications)

Inflation data later today will likely show that the Eurozone fell into deflation driven primarily by the big plunge in oil prices since 2008. The consensus expects a 0.1% decline year-over-year, but we look for the CPI to fall slightly more, by 0.2%.

7 February 2017 Don't Be Fooled by Jump in German Factory Orders (My Publications)

German manufacturing is in good shape, but probably is not as strong as implied by yesterday's surge in new orders. Factory orders jumped 5.2% month-to-month in December, rebounding strongly after a downwardly revised 3.6% fall in November. December's jump was the biggest monthly increase in two years, but it was flattered by a leap in bulk investment goods orders, mainly in the domestic market and other EZ economies.

7 February 2017 Disinflation in Colombia Continues, but Momentum is Easing, for now (My Publications)

January CPI data in Colombia, released on Saturday, confirmed that inflation pressures eased last month, but the details weren't as good as the headline. Inflation fell to 5.5% year-over-year, from 5.8% in December, as a result of falling food inflation-- helped mainly by a favourable base effect--and lower clothing prices.

7 December. 2016 Steady as She Goes for the EZ Economy, Despite Political Turmoil (My Publications)

Yesterday's detailed EZ GDP report showed that real output rose 0.3% quarter-on-quarter in Q3, the same pace as in Q2. The year-over-over rate rose marginally to 1.7% from 1.6%, trivially higher than the first estimate, 1.6%. The details showed that consumers' spending and public consumption were the key drivers of growth in Q3, offsetting a slowdown in net trade.

7 February 2017 Q1 Growth to Disappoint, Again? (My Publications)

The obvious answer to the question posed in our title is that it's far too early to tell what will happen to first quarter growth. More than half the quarter hasn't even happened yet, and data for January are still extremely patchy, with no official reports on retail sales, industrial production, housing, capex, inventories or international trade yet available. For what it's worth, the Atlanta Fed's GDPNow model signals growth of 3.4%, though we note that it substantially overstated the first estimate of growth in the fourth quarter.

7 Jan. 2015 The Sharp Slowdown In Chile's Economy Is Almost Over (My Publications)

Chile's economic outlook remains challenging. Overall, 2015 will likely mark the second consecutive year of disappointing growth, but it will be better than 2014, a year to forget.

7 July 2017 Andean Economies Improving as First-Half Shocks Fade (My Publications)

The Imacec data released on Wednesday provided further evidence that the Chilean economy grew at a decent pace in the second quarter, following a very sluggish first quarter.

7 July. 2015 Cyclical Recovery is Resilient - Not Immune - To Greek Turmoil (My Publications)

The sell-off in bonds and equities continued yesterday, but the reaction bears no resemblance, so far, to the sovereign debt crises in 2012 and 2010. The first evidence from sentiment data in July also points to surprising stability. The headline Sentix index rose to 18.5, up slightly from 17.1 in June, but the expectations index fell marginally, to 22.3 from 22.5.

7 July. 2015 May Trade Data Today are Critical to Q2 GDP Growth Estimates (My Publications)

Markets often pay little attention to the monthly foreign trade numbers, but today's May data are important because they could easily make a big difference to expectations for second quarter GDP growth. The key question is the extent to which exports have recovered since the port dispute on the West Coast, which severely distorted trade flows in the early part of the year.

7 July 2017 Upside Risk for Payroll. Despite Soft ADP. Robust AHE a Decent Bet too (My Publications)

ADP's reported 158K increase in private payrolls was very close to our model-based estimate, so it doesn't change our 220K forecast for todays official payroll number, well above the 177K consensus.

7 July 2017 The Soft and Hard Data Divide Persists in German Manufacturing (My Publications)

The hard numbers in Eurozone manufacturing continue to lag the sharp rise in the main surveys. Data yesterday showed that German factory orders rose 1.0% month-to-month in May, only partially rebounding from a downwardly revised 2.2% plunge in April.

7 July 2017 China's Authorities Losing the Regulatory Arbitrage Game (My Publications)

All regulators face the challenge that when you regulate one part of the economy, problems appear somewhere else. For China, the game is particularly intense because liquidity created by previous debt binges continues to slosh around the financial system, with no outlet to the real economy.

7 July 2017 Production Likely Jumped in May, but Q2 GDP Still Will b e Soft (My Publications)

Markets likely will be particularly sensitive to May's industrial production and construction output figures, released today, as they will provide a guide to the strength of the preliminary estimate of Q2 GDP, released shortly before the MPC's key meeting on August 3.

6 March 2017 Fed Fears Hit LatAm FX Last Week - is a Renewed Sell-off Coming? (My Publications)

LatAm assets have struggled in recent days as it has become clear that the Fed will hike next week. But we don't expect currencies to collapse, as domestic fundamentals are improving and the broader external outlook is relatively benign.

6 March 2017 Yellen Effectively Promises a March Hike, with Good Reason (My Publications)

Fed Chair Yellen's speech Friday was remarkably blunt: "Indeed, at our meeting later this month, the Committee will evaluate whether employment and inflation are continuing to evolve in line with our expectations, in which case a further adjustment of the federal funds rate would likely be appropriate."

5 September 2017 Services PMI set to Show Economy Still Struggling in Q3 (My Publications)

August's Markit/CIPS services survey, released today, likely will show that the economy's biggest sector is continuing to slow. We think that the PMI fell to just 53.0--its lowest level since it plunged immediately after the Brexit vote--from 53.8 in July, below the consensus, 53.5.

5 September 2017 Underlying Trend in Labor Data Unaffected by "Soft" August Report (My Publications)

We had hoped that the statistical problems which have plagued the initial estimates of August payrolls in recent years had faded, but Friday's report suggests our judgement was premature.

5 September. 2016 Brazil's Industrial Sector is Stabilizing - Modest Gains Ahead? (My Publications)

Friday's Brazil industrial production data were surprisingly upbeat. Output rose 0.1% month-to-month in July, slightly better than the consensus forecast for no change. July's modest gain was the fifth consecutive increase, confirming that industrial output in Brazil is stabilizing, and it paints a less grim picture of GDP growth at the start of Q3.

5 September 2017 BanRep's Hawks want Proof the Coming In ation Jump is Noise (My Publications)

Colombia's Central Bank is about to face a short-term dilemma. The recent fall in inflation will be interrupted while economic growth, particularly private spending, will struggle to build momentum over the second half.

5 September 2017 How Much of a Headwind is a Stronger Euro for EZ Equities? (My Publications)

At the start of the year, consensus forecasts expected Eurozone equities to outperform their global peers this year, on the back of a strengthening cyclical recovery and an increase in earnings growth. Both of these conditions have been met, and yesterday's sentiment data suggest that EZ equity investors remain constructive.

5 Oct. 2015 Less Bad Than Expected Data in Brazil, But the Crisis is Not Over (My Publications)

Brazil's economic and fiscal outlook has worsened in recent months, and economic activity will likely contract even further in the short-term. Some of last week's economic reports, however, were a bit less bad than of late. The latest industrial production data were less bad than expected in August, but the picture is still very grim. Industrial output plunged 1.2% month-to-month, above the consensus, and allowing the annual rate to stabilize at -9% year-over-year.

5 Oct. 2015 Why are Payroll Gains Slowing When Employers Want to Hire? (My Publications)

It is possible that the broad-based softness of September payrolls captures a knee-jerk reaction on the part of employers, choosing to wait-and-see what happens to demand in the wake of stock market correction. But that can't be the explanation for the mere 136K August gain, because the survey was conducted before the market rolled over. Even harder to explain is the hefty downward revision to August payrolls, after years of upward revisions. All is not yet lost for August--the last time the first revision to the month was downwards, -3K in 2010, the second revision was +56K--but we aren't wildly optimistic.

5 September. 2016 Is a Further Rate Cut no Longer a Done Deal? (My Publications)

The run of consensus-beating activity measures and the pickup in leading indicators of inflation have led markets to doubt that the MPC really will follow up August's package of stimulus measures with another Bank Rate cut this year.

5 September. 2016 Wanted: A New Monetary Policy Target for the ECB (My Publications)

In principle, predicting the interest rate policies of an inflation-targeting central bank should be simple. Our first chart shows a standard Taylor Rule rate for the Eurozone based on the ECB's inflation target of 2%, the long-run average unemployment rate and a long run "equilibrium interest rate" of 1.5%. This framework historically has been a decent guide to ECB policy.

6 April 2017 Firms in the EZ are Investing Again, but What About Wages? (My Publications)

Readers have asked us about the availability of flow-of-funds data in the Eurozone similar to the detailed U.S. reports. The ECB's sector accounts come close and cover a lot of ground, but are also released with a lag. We can't cover all sectors in one Monitor, but the investment data for non-financial firms, excluding construction, suggest that investment growth slowed last year.

6 April 2017 GDP Growth Likely Slowed in Q1, Despite The Rising Services PMI (My Publications)

The rise in Markit/CIPS services PMI to 55.0 in March, from 53.3 in February, brings some relief that GDP growth has not stalled in Q1, following manufacturing and construction surveys that signalled near-stagnation.

6 December. 2016 PMI Data Signal a Solid End to 2016 for the EZ Economy (My Publications)

The final EZ PMI data for November yesterday confirmed that the composite index in the Eurozone rose to an 11-month high of 53.9, from 53.3 in October. The key driver was an improvement in services, boosted by stronger data in all the major economies. Manufacturing activity also improved, though, and the details showed that new business growth was robust in both sectors.

6 April 2017 ADP Likely Overstates Payrolls, ISM Non-manufacturing Understates (My Publications)

We don't directly plug the ADP employment data into our model for the official payroll number. ADP's estimate is derived itself from a model which incorporates lagged official payroll data, because payrolls tend to mean-revert, as well as macroeconomic variables including oil prices, industrial production and jobless claims -- and actual employment data from firms which use ADP's payroll processing services.

6 Apr. 2016 Recession Risks Ease in Chile as Underlying IMACEC Stabilizes (My Publications)

Chile's economy appears to have gathered momentum in February with the Imacec index, a proxy for GDP, increasing 2.8% year-over-year, up from a modest 0.1% contraction in January and its fastest pace since January 2015. Activity was driven mainly by expansion in services, mining and retail commerce activities.

6 Apr. 2016 Is Non-Manufacturing Activity Past Its Cyclical Peak in the Eurozone? (My Publications)

The final Eurozone PMIs indicate that the cyclical recovery continued in Q1, but downside risks are rising. The composite index rose marginally to 53.0 in March, from 53.1 in February, below the initial estimate 53.7. Over the quarter as a whole, though, the index fell to 53.2 from 54.1 in Q4, indicating that economic momentum moderated in the first quarter.

6 Apr. 2016 Productivity Slowdowns Have Happened Before, and Reversed (My Publications)

With only three weeks to go until the release of the initial official estimate of first quarter GDP, the Atlanta Fed's GDPNow measure shows growth at just 0.4%. Our own estimate, which includes our subjective forecasts for the missing data--the Atlanta Fed's measure is entirely model-based--is a bit higher, at 1%, and both measures could easily be revised significantly.

5 Oct. 2015 Bravery will be Rewarded on Eurozone Equities in Q4 (My Publications)

Headwinds from global growth fears have weighed on Eurozone equities in recent months, leaving the benchmark MSCI EU ex-UK index with a paltry year-to-date return ex-dividends of 1.7%. We think bravery will be rewarded, though, and see strong performance in the next six months. Equities in Europe do best when excess liquidity --M1 growth in excess of inflation and nominal GDP growth--is high.

5 Nov. 2015 Yellen Signals December Action, Data Permitting (My Publications)

Fed Chair Yellen yesterday reinforced the impression that the bar to Fed action in December, in terms of the next couple of employment reports, is now quite low: "If we were to move, say in December, it would be based on an expectation, which I believe is justified, [our italics] that with an improving labor market and transitory factors fading, that inflation will move up to 2%." The economy is now "performing well... Domestic spending has been growing at a solid pace" making a December hike a "live possibility." New York Fed president Bill Dudley, speaking later, said he "fully" agrees with Dr. Yellen's position, but "let's see what the data show."

5 June. 2015 The ECB's Year-End Inflation forecast is probably too low (My Publications)

The violence of recent bond market weakness likely has been driven mainly by reduced liquidity, and a squeeze in crowded positions. But we also think that it can be partly explained by an adjustment to higher inflation expectations. The latest ECB staff projections assume the average HICP inflation will be 0.3% this year, up from the zero predicted in March. Allowing for a smooth increase over the remainder of the year, this implies a year-end inflation rate of 0.8%.

5 Mar. 2015 Bond Markets in the Eurozone Will Stay Crazy as the ECB Starts QE (My Publications)

The ECB will keep interest rates on hold later today, and the commitment to monthly asset purchases of €60B--of which €50B will be sovereigns--until September next year will also remain unchanged. Sovereign QE should begin formally next week, but it has already turned bond markets upside down.

5 Mar. 2015 Stronger Fed Growth Forecasts Mean Even Lower Unemployment (My Publications)

In the wake of last week's downward revision to fourth quarter GDP growth, productivity will be revised down too. We expect the initial estimate, -1.8%, to be revised down to -2.4%, a startling reversal after robust gains in the second and third quarters.

5 June. 2015 Payroll consensus looks low, but watch out for the birth death model (My Publications)

All the fundamentals point to a very strong payroll number for May. The NFIB hiring in tentions index, the best single leading indicator of payrolls five months ahead, signalled back in December that May employment would rise by about 300K. The NFIB actual net hiring number, released yesterday, is a bit less bullish, implying 250K, but the extraordinarily low level of jobless claims, shown in our first chart, points to 300K. Finally, the ISM non-manufacturing employment index suggests we should be looking for payrolls to rise by about 260K. Our estimate is 280K.

5 June. 2015 BCB hikes rates to squeeze inflation and rebuild credibility (My Publications)

Brazil's Monetary Policy Committee--Copom--increased the Selic rate by 50bp to 13.75% on Wednesday, as widely expected. The short statement was unchanged from the previous four meetings, indicating the decision was unanimous and without bias, maintaining uncertainty about the next steps. Many Copom members, especially its President, Alexandre Tombini, have signaled that they intend to persevere in their attempt to bring the inflation rate down to 4.5% by the end of 2016.

5 June 2017 The Election Race is Still Tightening, Setting up Sterling for More Volatility (My Publications)

The Conservatives' opinion poll lead continued to decline over the last week, suggesting that a landslide victory on Thursday no longer is likely. Indeed, the Tories' average lead over Labour in the 10 most recent opinion polls has fallen to just 6%, down from a peak of nearly 20% a month ago.

5 June 2017 The Real Story of High Youth Unemployment in the Eurozone (My Publications)

Youth unemployment remains a blemish on the Eurozone economy, despite an increasingly resilient cyclical recovery. The unemployment rate for young workers aged 15-to-24 years stood at 18.4% at the end of April, chiefly due to high joblessness in the periphery.

5 May 2017 Mr. Macron should be able to move into the Élysée on Monday (My Publications)

This weekend will bring closure to an extraordinary presidential election campaign in France. The polls correctly predicted the first result, and assuming they are right in the second round too, Mr. Macron will comfortably beat Ms. Le Pen.

5 May 2017 Brazil's Industrial Output Dropped in March, but the Trend is Rising (My Publications)

Wednesday's Brazilian industrial production data were worse than we expected but the details were less alarming than the headline. Output slipped 1.8% month-to-month in March, the biggest fall since August 2015, setting a low starting point for Q2.

5 Nov. 2015 A Rebound in German New Orders? But the Trend is Subdued (My Publications)

Factory orders in Germany probably jumped in September, following a string of losses in the beginning of Q3. We think new orders rose 1.0% month-to-month, pushing the year-over-year rate slightly lower, to 1.8% from 2.0% in August. A rebound in non- Eurozone export orders likely will be the key driver of the monthly gain, following a 14.8% cumulative plunge in the previous two months. The rise will be concentrated in capital and consumer goods, and should be enough to offset a fall in export orders within the euro area. Our forecast is consistent with new orders falling 2.0% quarter-on-quarter in Q3, partly reversing the 3.0% surge in the second quarter, and raising downside risks for production in Q4.

5 Nov. 2015 More MPC Hawks Likely to Emerge Today, Despite Services Slowdown (My Publications)

The improvement in the Markit/CIPS services PMI in October was pretty limp, supporting our view here that the recovery is shifting into a lower gear. What's more, the poor productivity performance implied by the latest PMIs indicates that wage growth will fuel inflation soon. As a result, the Monetary Policy Committee--MPC--won't be able to wait long next year before raising interest rates. Indeed, we expect the minutes of this month's meeting, released today, to show that one more member of the nine-person MPC has joined Ian McCafferty in voting to hike rates.

5 May. 2016 ISM Non-manufacturing Jobs Up, But are Prior Declines a Threat? (My Publications)

Markets and the commentariat seemed not to like the April ADP employment report yesterday but we are completely indifferent. We set out in detail in yesterday's Monitor the case for expecting a below consensus ADP reading--in short, the model used to generate the number includes lagging official data, some of which were hugely depressed by the early Easter--so it does not change our 200K forecast for tomorrow's official number.

5 May. 2016 Growth in Eurozone Consumers' Spending is Slowing (My Publications)

Evidence of slowing growth in Eurozone consumers' spending continues to mount. Retail sales in the euro area fell 0.5% month-to-month in March, pushing the year-over-rate down to 2.1% from a revised 2.7% in February. The headline likely was depressed by the early Easter. March had one trading day less than February, which was not picked up the seasonals.

5 May 2017 Payrolls Should Rebound to More than 200K, Wage Gains up too? (My Publications)

If the underlying trend in payroll growth is about 200K, then a weather-depressed 98K reading needs to be followed by a rebound of about 300K in order fully to reverse the hit. But the consensus for today's April number is only 190K, and our forecast is 225K.

5 May 2017 Surveys Signal a Solid Start to Q2, but "Hard" Data Remain Weak (My Publications)

Activity surveys picked up across the board in April, offering hope that the slowdown in GDP growth--to just 0.3% quarter-on-quarter in Q1-- will be just a blip. The headline indicators of surveys from the CBI, European Commission, Lloyds Bank and Markit all improved in April and all exceeded their 2004-to-2016 averages.

6 Feb. 2015 Chilean Growth Is Improving, But China's Slowdown Is A Worry (My Publications)

Chilean GDP growth hit bottom in August, but activity is now picking up and will gather speed over the coming quarters. The tailwinds from lower oil prices and fiscal stimulus will soon be visible in the activity data.

6 Feb. 2015 Payroll Growth Trending at 250K-plus - Expect Strength Today (My Publications)

The odds favor a robust January payroll report today. The key leading indicator--the NIFB hiring intentions index from five months ago--points to a 275K increase, while the coincident NFIB actual employment change index suggests 260K.

6 June 2017 Andes Economies to Recover in H2, Thanks to Loose Monetary Policy (My Publications)

Recent data have confirmed that growth in the Andean economies--Colombia, Chile and Peru--faced downward pressure in Q1, but some leading indicators and recent hard data suggest that we should expect better news ahead.

6 June 2017 ISM Non-manufacturing Jobs Up Sharply. Summer Payrolls to Surge? (My Publications)

The 6.4-point rebound in the May ISM non-manufacturing employment index, to a very high 57.8, supports our view that summer payroll growth will be strong. On the face of it, the survey is consistent with job gains in excess of 300K, as our first chart shows, but that's very unlikely to happen.

6 June 2017 May Services PMI Dents Second Quarter Rebound Hopes (My Publications)

The fall in the services PMI to 53.8 in May, from 55.8 in April, is a setback for hopes that the slowdown in GDP growth in Q1 will be fleeting. Both business activity and orders rose at their slowest rates since February.

6 July. 2016 The EZ Economy is at the Mercy of Rising Political Uncertainty (My Publications)

Yesterday's economic data point to a sea of calm in the Eurozone economy. The composite PMI was unchanged at 53.1 in June, a slight upward revision from the initial estimate, 52.8. The index suggests real GDP growth was stable at 1.5%-to-1.6% year-overyear in Q2, though the quarter-on-quarter rate likely slowed markedly, following the jump in Q1.

6 July. 2016 ISM Non-manufacturing Jobs Should Rebound, but How Far? (My Publications)

The shock of the weak May payroll report means that the June numbers this week will come under even greater scrutiny than usual. We are not optimistic that a substantial rebound is coming immediately. The headline number will be better than in May, because the 35K May drag from the Verizon strike will reverse.

6 July. 2015 Labor Market is Still Tightening, Despite June Payroll Miss (My Publications)

First, a deep breath: June payrolls, with a margin of error of +/-107K, missed the consensus by 10K. Adding in the -60K revisions and the miss is still statistically insignificant. The story, therefore, is that there is no story. Even relative to our more bullish forecast, the miss was just 37K. Nothing bad happened in June. But we hav e to acknowledge that payroll growth has now undershot the pace implied by the NFIB's hiring intentions number--lagged by five months--in each of the past four months. In June, the survey pointed to a 320K jump in private employment, overshooting the actual print by nearly 100K.

6 July. 2016 Economic Activity Remains Soft in the Andes, But Will Improve Ahead (My Publications)

Economic activity is slowing in Colombia. The ISE activity index--a monthly proxy for GDP--rose only 0.6% year-over-year in April, down from 2.3% in March, and we expect it to rise at this pace over the coming months. During the first quarter, the index rose at an average year-over-year rate of 3.0%.

6 June 2017 The Spanish Economy is Punching Above its Weight. Can it Last? (My Publications)

Yesterday's final May PMI data in the Eurozone confirmed the strength of the cyclical upturn. The composite PMI was unchanged at 56.8, in line with the initial estimate.

6 June. 2016 A New Portuguese Debt Crisis is Unlikely in the Shor t Run (My Publications)

The recent deal between Greece and the EU shows that the appetite for a repeat of last year's chaos is low. But investors' attention has turned to whether Portugal is waiting in the wings to reignite the sovereign debt crisis. Complacency is dangerous, but economic data suggest that a Portuguese shock to the Eurozone economy and financial markets is unlikely this year.

6 Mar. 2015 The BCB Hikes Again But The Tightening Cycle is Not Quite Over (My Publications)

The Brazilian industrial sector started this year on a very downbeat note, despite a 2% month-to-month jump in output. The underlying trend in activity is still very weak. Production fell 5.2% year-over-year.

6 March 2017 Can Gilt Yields Remain Low While the World Reflates? (My Publications)

If 2017 really is the year of "reflation", somebody forgot to tell the gilt market. Among the G7 group, 10-year yields have fallen only in the U.K. during the last three months, as our first chart shows.

6 March 2017 PMIs Signal Stronger EZ Growth, but Will the Hard Data Follow? (My Publications)

Survey data continue to suggest that GDP growth will accelerate in Q1. The final PMI reports on Friday showed that the headline EZ composite index rose to 56.0 in February, from 54.4 in January, in line with the first estimate.

6 Mar. 2015 Decent But Unspectacular Job Gains in February? (My Publications)

Our base forecast for today's February payroll number is an unspectacular 220K, though if you twist our arms we'd probably say that we'd be less surprised by a big overshoot to this estimate than an undershoot. The single biggest argument against a big print today is simply that February payrolls have initially been under-reported in each of the past five years and then revised higher.

6 Mar. 2015 A more upbeat Mr. Draghi, but QE is not challenged by better economic data (My Publications)

Mr. Draghi was in a slightly more bullish mood yesterday, noting that the significant easing of financial conditions in recent months and improving sentiment show that monetary policy "has worked". Economic risks are tilted to the downside, according to the president, but they have also "diminished".

6 June. 2016 Mr. Temer Begins Brazil's Fiscal Overhaul, Despite Political Unrest (My Publications)

Brazil's interim government has been trying to put the kibosh on the vicious circle of recession, capital outflows, and political pandering that has dogged the country for so long. In his first few weeks at the helm, despite the political turmoil, Mr. Temer has started to tackle Brazil's fiscal mess, the country's biggest headache.

6 June. 2016 Payrolls Will Rebound Over the Summer - Fed to Hike in September (My Publications)

We chose last week to ignore the payroll warning signal from the ISM non-manufacturing employment index, which rolled over in January and February, because the danger seemed to have passed. The ISM is not always a reliable indicator--the drop in the index in early 2014 was not replicated in the official data, but the plunge in early 2015 was--and usually it operates with a very short lag, just a month or two.

6 July. 2015 Greece Votes No, and Takes a Step Closer to Exiting the Euro (My Publications)

The Greek polls released Sunday evening indicate a comfortable victory for "no," rejecting the latest EU proposal. This is not a good outcome for the market, and volatility will likely increase substantially today. The result--not confirmed as we go to press but very clearly indicated by the count so far--gives an air of legitimacy to Syriza's brinkmanship, but the creditors' reaction to a "no" vote, which they likely did not expect, is uncertain.

6 July. 2015 Colombia's Economic Activity Resilient, but is it Sustainable? (My Publications)

Colombia started the second quarter strongly, with the ISE economic activity indicator--a monthly proxy for GDP--expanding a solid and surprising 3.6% year-over-year in April, up from 2.9% in March. The rate of growth is well above the 2.8% gain in Q1, con firming the country's resiliency in the face of lower oil prices. Still, growth has slowed sharply since the 4.4% increase in activity in 2014, as our first chart shows.

6 February 2017 Soft January Hourly Earnings Will Prove Short-Lived (My Publications)

Markets over-reacted to the much smaller-than-expected 0.1% increase in January hourly earnings, in our view. We don't have a full explanation for the shortfall against our 0.5% forecast, but that doesn't make it wise to throw out the baby with the bathwater, making the de facto assumption that wage growth now won't accelerate in the future.

6 Jan. 2015 - How Will the Fed React to Sub- Zero Headline Inflation in Q2? (My Publications)

The latest drop in crude oil prices me ans that sub-zero headline CPI inflation in the spring is now more likely than not. We expect a lurch down from November's 1.3% to 0.7% in December, then 0.3% in January. The rate will remain close to that level for the next few months before hitting zero in May and slipping into negative territory--just--in June and July.

6 Jan. 2015 Weak German CPI = December Deflation in The Eurozone (My Publications)

Advance inflation data from Germany and Spain indicate that the Eurozone slipped into deflation last month, piling maximum pressure on Mr. Draghi later this month. Inflation in the euro area's largest economy fell to 0.2% year-over-year in December from 0.6% in November, driven by a 6.6% plunge in the energy component.

6 February 2017 Growth Indicators Start to Turn Down as Price Pressures Escalate (My Publications)

The run of above-consensus news on the U.K. economy came to an abrupt end last week, as a series of survey indicators for January took a turn for the worse. After six months of breathing space, the economic consequences of the Brexit vote are increasingly being felt.

6 February 2017 Mexico's Sentiment Depressed by Trump Fears and "Gasolinazo" (My Publications)

Mexico's latest hard data suggest things might not be as bad as we feared. Retail sales and manufacturing output were relatively strong at the end of last year, the Q4 preliminary GDP report was mostly upbeat, and the labor market was firing on all cylinders.

6 Feb. 2015 The ECB increases the pressure on Greece (My Publications)

The decision by the ECB to remove the waiver for including Greek government bonds in standard refinancing operations changes little in the short run, as the banking system in Greece still has full access to the ELA. It does put additional pressure on Syriza, though, to abandon the position that it will exit the bailout on February the 28th, effectively pushing the economy into the abyss.

6 February 2017 EZ Households are in Good Shape, But Spending Will Slow in 2017 (My Publications)

Consumers' spending in the euro area weakened at the end of Q4, but we think households will continue to boost GDP growth in the first quarter. Data on Friday showed that retail sales fell 0.3% month-to-month in December, pushing the year-over-year rate down to 1.1%, from a revised 2.8% in November.

6 January 2017 Are Markets Complacent About the Chances of a 2017 Rate Hike? (My Publications)

Investors have treated the upbeat message of the Markit/CIPS PMIs this week with caution and continue to think that the chance that the MPC will raise interest rates this year is remote. Overnight index swap rates currently are pricing-in just a one-in-four chance of a 25 basis point increase in Bank Rate in 2017.

6 January 2017 Brazil's Industrial Recovery is Underway, but it is Painfully Slow (My Publications)

Yesterday's Brazilian industrial production data continue to tell a story of a slow business cycle upturn. Output rose 0.2% month-to-month in November, after a downwardly revised 1.2% plunge in October. The year-over-year rate, though, jumped to -1.1%, from -7.3% in October. The underlying trend is now on the mend, following weakness in Q3 and early Q4. Output rose in November three of the four major categories and in 13 of the 24 sectors.

6 July 2017 Monte dei Paschi Finally is Restructured. Will it Work? (My Publications)

It's probably happening a decade too late, but the EU is now moving in leaps and bounds to restructure the continent's weakest banks. Yesterday, the Monte dei Paschi saga reached an interim conclusion when the Commission agreed to allow the Italian government to take a 70% stake in the ailing lender.

6 July 2017 Sluggish Growth and Slowing Price Rises Undermine Rate Hike Case (My Publications)

Investors have stuck to their view that interest rates are just as likely to rise this year as not, despite the soft round of PMIs released this week.

6 July 2017 Downside Risk for June ADP Jobs, but Official Data Will be Stronger (My Publications)

Today's June ADP employment report likely will undershoot the 183K consensus, but we then expect the official payroll number tomorrow to surprise to the upside.

6 July 2017 Chinese Service Sector Downtrend to Continue into the Second Half (My Publications)

China's service sector slowed again in June, with the Caixin PMI falling to 51.6 from 52.8 in May. The Q2 average of 52.0 was only minimally lower than the 52.6 in Q1.

6 January 2017 Decent December Job Gains, and Wage Growth Set for a New High? (My Publications)

We're expecting a 175K increase in December payrolls today. Our forecast has been nudged down from 190K in the wake of the ADP employment report, which was slightly weaker than we expected.

6 January 2017 Will the ECB's Doves Be Overrun by Higher Inflation in 2017? (My Publications)

Inflation in the Eurozone is on the rise but, as we explained in yesterday's Monitor it is unlikely to prompt the ECB further to reduce the pace of QE in the short run. The central bank has signalled a shift in focus towards core inflation, at a still-low 0.9% well below the 2% target. But the core rate also is a lagging indicator, and we think it will creep higher in 2017.

7 Oct. 2015 Trend in German New Orders is Stable, Despite Monthly Plunge (My Publications)

Yesterday's factory orders report in German was grim reading. New orders fell 1.8% month-to-month in August, following a downwardly revised 2.2% plunge in July. Weakness in export demand and mean reversion in domestic orders were the key culprits. Domestic orders fell 2.6% month-to-month; nothing to worry about after a near-4% jump in July.

7 Sept. 2015 Mexico's Recovery In Place But Constrained By External Headwinds (My Publications)

Growth momentum in Mexico has improved marginally over the last few months after the soft patch during the first quarter, with business and households gaining confidence in the economic recovery. But the upswing has been rather modest, due to the volatility in global financial markets and the challenging external environment. The outlook for the global economy has deteriorated over recent months due to China's problems, and commodity prices remain under pressure. All these factors are now weighing on investors' confidence and hurting EM across asset classes.

9 Jan. 2015 Weak Manufacturing amid Signs of Strength in Consumption (My Publications)

New orders data released yesterday for Germany confirmed that weakness in the manufacturing sector remains a key challenge for the economy. Factory orders fell 2.4% month-on-month in November, equivalent to a 0.4% fall year-over-year.

9 January 2017 Wage Growth is Emerging as a Clear and Present Inflation Threat (My Publications)

December's payroll numbers were unexciting, exactly matching the 175K consensus when the 19K upward revision to November is taken into account. Some of the details were a bit odd, though, notably the 63K jump in healthcare jobs, well above the 40K trend, and the 19K drop in temporary workers, compared to the typical 15K monthly gain.

9 January 2017 Will Sterling Take a Further Pounding in 2017? (My Publications)

Sterling was the worst performing G10 currency in 2016 and most analysts anticipate further weakness in 2017. The cost of purchasing downside protection for sterling over the next year also continues to exceed upside protection, as our first chart shows.

9 Jan. 2015 Inflation Under Control, But Currency Depreciation Still a Risk (My Publications)

Colombia's annual inflation rate closed last year at 3.7% year-over-year, unchanged from November, and within Banrep's target, 2%-to-4%. Core inflation, ex-food and fuel, advanced to 2.8% in December from 2.6% in November.

9 Jan. 2015 - Expect Another Robust Payroll Report - Watch Hourly Wages Too (My Publications)

Most of the evidence points to a robust December employment report today, though we doubt the headline number will match the heights seen in November, when the initial estimate showed payrolls up 321K. We look for 275K.

9 February 2017 Markets finally wake up to political risks in France (My Publications)

The twists and turns of the French presidential election campaign continue. François Fillon was tipped as favourite after he won the Republican primaries. But Mr. Fillon now is struggling to keep his campaign on track after allegations that he gave high paying "pro-forma" jobs to his wife as an assistant last year. The socialist candidate, Benoit Hamon, has been hampered by the unpopularity of his party's incumbent, François Hollande, and has lost ground to the far-left Jean-Luc Mélenchon.

9 February 2017 Weak December Production to Raise Spectre of GDP Revision (My Publications)

Figures due on Friday likely will show that the increase in industrial production in December was much smaller than the 0.6% month-to-month assumed by the ONS in its preliminar y Q4 GDP estimate. We expect a 0.2% rise, which would leave production down 0.1% quarter-on-quarter, rather than up 0.1% as the ONS initially estimated.

9 January 2017 Mexico Trembles Before Trump Tweets, Expect More Volatility Soon (My Publications)

For the MXN, last year was especially harsh. The currency endured extreme volatility, plunging 17% against the USD. So far, this year is off to a rocky start too. The MXN fell close to 2.5% during the first week of 2017.

9 January 2017 The Eurozone Economy Likely Finished 2016 With a Bang (My Publications)

The slew of EZ economic data on Friday supports our view that the economy ended 2016. The Commission's economic sentiment index jumped to 107.8 in December from a revised 106.6 in November. The headline strength was due to a big increase in "business climate indicator" and higher consumer sentiment. In individual countries, solid numbers for German construction and French services sentiment were the stand-out details.

9 June 2017 Markets Continue to Distrust Opinion Polls Indicating a Tight Race (My Publications)

The final flurry of opinion polls indicates that voting intentions have changed little over the last few days. The Conservatives have an average lead over Labour of 7.5% in the final p olls conducted by 10 different agencies, only slightly more than their 6.5% lead at the 2015 election.

9 June 2017 The ECB's World: Accelerating GDP Growth and Lower Inflation (My Publications)

The headline changes in yesterday's ECB policy announcement were largely as expected. The central bank left its main refinancing and deposit rates unchanged at 0.00% and -0.4% respectively, and maintained the pace of QE at €60B per month. The central bank also delivered the two expected changes to its introductory statement. The reference to "lower levels" was removed from the forward guidance on rates, signalling that the ECB does not expect that rates will be lowered anytime soon.

9 June. 2015 A flying start to Q2 for German Industrial sector and exports (My Publications)

Economic reports released yesterday indicate that the German economy was off to a solid start early in the second quarter. Industrial production rose 0.9% month-to-month in April, equivalent to a 1.4% increase year-over-year, up from a revised tiny 0.2% gain in March. This is the biggest annual jump in production since July last year, but the underlying trend is turning up only slowly, in line with the moderate improvement in survey data this year.

9 June 2017 Inflation in Mexico will Stabilize Soon, Despite May's Ugly Headline (My Publications)

The Mexican inflation rate soared at the start of 2017, but this is yesterday's story; the headline will stabilize soon and will decline slowly towards the year-end. May data yesterday showed that inflation rose to 6.2%, from 5.8% in April. Prices fell 0.1% month-to-month unadjusted in May, driven mainly by lower non-core prices, which dropped by 1.3%, as a result of lower seasonal electricity tariffs.

9 June 2017 Bank C&I Lending has Levelled-off, Expect a Second-Half Rebound (My Publications)

The rollover in bank lending to commercial and industrial companies probably is over. On the face of it, the slowdown has been alarming, with year-over-year growth in the stock of lending slowing to just 2.6% in April, from a sustained peak of more than 10% in the early part of last year.

9 July. 2015 Oil Firms' Capex Rollover is Almost Over, Provided Prices Stabilize (My Publications)

After 29 straight weekly declines, the number of oil rigs in operation in the U.S. rose to 640 in the week ended July 2, from 628 the previous week, according to oil services firm Baker Hughes, Inc. If today's report for the week ended July 9 shows the rig count steady or up again, it will b e much easier to argue that the plunge in activity since the peak--1,601 rigs, in mid-September--is now over.

9 July. 2015 Steep Wall of Worry in EZ Equities, But Macro Indicators Say "Buy" (My Publications)

Bond market volatility and political turmoil in Greece have been the key drivers of an abysmal second quarter for Eurozone equities. Recent panic in Chinese markets has further increased the pressure, adding to the wall of worry for investors. A correction in stocks is not alarming, though, following the surge in Q1 from the lows in October. The total return-- year-to-date in euros--for the benchmark MSCI EU ex-UK index remains a respectable 11.4%.

9 February 2017 Is the Jump in Wholesale Inventories Sustainable? (My Publications)

Total real inventories rose at a $48.7B annualized rate in the fourth quarter, contributing 1.0 percentage points to headline GDP growth. Wholesale durable goods accounted for $34B of the aggregate increase, following startling 1.0% month-to-month nominal increases in both November and December. The November jump was lead by a 3.2% leap in the auto sector, but inventories rose sharply across a broad and diverse range of other durables, including lumber, professional equipment, electricals and miscellaneous.

9 Feb. 2015 The German economy is improving: Q4 GDP will beat consensus (My Publications)

German industrial production data were presented by Bloomberg News as signs that the recovery is "gathering momentum", but it is slightly premature to make that call. Narrow money growth is currently sending a strong signal of higher GDP growth this year in the euro area, but the message from the manufacturing sector is still one of stabilisation rather than acceleration.

9 August. 2016 London Will Continue to Bear the Brunt of the Downturn (My Publications)

London has been the U.K.'s growth star for the last two decades. Between 1997 and 2014, yearover-year growth in nominal Gross Value Added averaged 5.4% in London, greatly exceeding the 4% rate across the rest of the country. Surveys since the referendum, however, indicate that the capital is at the sharp end of the post-referendum downturn.

9 August. 2016 NFIB Survey Signals Better Non-Oil Business Capex as Soon as Q3 (My Publications)

The headline NFIB index of small business activity and sentiment in July likely will be little changed from June--we expect a half-point dip, while the consensus forecast is for a repeat of June's 94.5--but what we really care about is the capex intentions componen

9 Dec. 2014 - NFIB Says Wage Pressure is Rising: ECI Data Seem to Agree (My Publications)

We argued in the Monitor yesterday that the NFIB survey's hiring intentions number is the best guide to the trend in payroll growth a few months ahead. But today's November NFIB report will bring no new information on job growth because the key labor market elements of the survey have already been released.

9 August. 2016 Further Evidence of Divergence in the Andean Economies (My Publications)

Colombia's economy has continued to slow, due mainly to lagged effect of the oil price shock since mid-2014, and stubbornly high inflation, which has triggered painful monetary tightening. Modest fiscal expansion and capital inflows have helped to avoid a hard landing, but the economy is still feeling the pain of weakening domestic demand. And the twin deficits--though improving--remain a threat.

9 August 2017 Productivity Growth Might be Turning up, Labor Costs Subdued (My Publications)

We are a bit more optimistic than the consensus on the question of second quarter productivity growth, but the data are so unreliable and erratic that the difference between our 1.2% forecast and the 0.7% consensus estimate doesn't mean much.

9 August 2017 Chinese Trade Growth to Continue Trending Down in the Second Half (My Publications)

The headline Chinese trade numbers are beginning to come into line with the story we have been telling about the more recent trends.

9 August 2017 Inflation in the Andes Remains in Check, But H2 Will Be Less Benign (My Publications)

Inflation pressures in Colombia cooled considerably last month. Saturday's CPI report showed that inflation fell to 3.4% year-over-year in July, its lowest level since 2014, from 4.0% in June.

9 Dec. 2015 Chile's Imacec Consistent With Weak But Stable GDP Growth (My Publications)

Economic activity data in Chile have been soft and uneven this year, due mainly to the hit from low commodity prices and uncertainty surrounding the reform agenda, which has badly damaged consumer and investor sentiment. The latest Imacec index, a proxy for GDP, increased just 1.7% year-over-year in October, down from the 2.7% gain in September, and below the 2.2% average seen during Q3 as a whole.

9 Dec. 2015 Could Falling Oil Prices Delay the MPC Again? (My Publications)

The price of Brent oil has fallen sharply to $40 per barrel from about $50 just a month ago, and speculation is mounting that it could plunge to $20 soon. But CPI inflation should still pick up over coming months, provided oil prices remain above $30. And the absence of "second-round" effects of lower oil prices this year should reassure the Monetary Policy Committee that lower oil prices won't bear down on inflation over the medium-term.

9 December. 2016 The Oil Hit Spread Widely Across the Economy - Now, it's Over (My Publications)

A core element of our relatively upbeat macro view before the implementation of fiscal stimulus under the new administration is that the ending of the drag from falling capex in the oil sector will have quite wide, positive implications for growth. The recovery in direct oil sector spending is clear enough; it will just track the rising rig count, as usual.

9 Feb. 2015 Labor Data Forcing the Fed Into a Corner - (My Publications)

It's always easy to find reasons to doubt single monthly observations of any economic time series, but our first chart makes it very clear that the labor market has strengthened markedly over the past few months. The underlying trend rate of growth in private payrolls is now above 300K for the first time in exactly 20 years, and we seen no reason to expect much change over the next few months.

9 Feb. 2015 Only Brazil Will Have to Hike, Other LatAm Central Banks On Hold (My Publications)

Last week's data supported our view that monetary policy across LatAm will continue to diverge in the short term. Brazil will have to prolong its monetary tightening cycle, while economies such as Colombia and Chile will remain on hold despite the recent slowdowns in their economic cycle.

9 December. 2016 The ECB Sent a Dovish Signal Yesterday, QE is Here to Stay (My Publications)

Yesterday's ECB meeting left investors with a lot of thinking to do. The central bank kept its key interest rate unchanged, but extended and tweaked its asset purchase program. QE was extended until December 2017, but the monthly pace of purchases will be reduced by €20B per month to €60B starting April next year.

9 December 2016 Mexico's Consumers Will Face a Tough 2017 (My Publications)

Mexico's economic outlook has dimmed recently, a point driven home by sentiment data released last week. Still, we think GDP growth will slow only marginally in Q4, to about 11⁄2% year-over-year. Consumers' spending likely will remain strong in the near term, thanks mainly to rising remittances from the U.S., driven by fear of policy changes under the Trump administration.

9 Dec. 2015 Services will Push up Core Inflation in the EZ Next Year (My Publications)

Core inflation--a long lagging indicator in the euro area-- will rise next year, in response to surging consumers' spending. Our first chart shows that services inflation likely will be a key theme in this story. Even allowing for a structural drag on inflation due to high unemployment outside Germany, cyclical risks to services inflation are tilted firmly to the upside.

9 Dec. 2015 Sub-$40 WTI Boosts Consumers' Cashflow - Oil Capex to Fall Further (My Publications)

OPEC's decision at the weekend to turn the oil market into a free-for-all means that the rebound in headline inflation over the next few months will be less dramatic than we had been expecting. Falling retail gas prices look set to subtract 0.2% from the headline index in both November and December, and by a further 0.1% in January. These declines are much smaller than in the same three months a year ago, so the headline rate will still rise sharply, to about 1.3% by January from 0.2% in October, but it won't approach 2% until the end of next year or early 2017,

9 June. 2015 New York Fed Says Weather, Not Seasonals, Hit Q1 Growth (My Publications)

The latest round of Fed analysis on the weakness of first quarter growth, from the New York Fed, completely contradicts the conclusions of the San Fran Fed's work published a couple of weeks ago. The NY Fed found no statistically significant residual seasonality in the GDP numbers, and argued that the reported decline in economic activity was due entirely to the severe weather, which subtracted about two percentage points from headline growth.

9 June. 2016 Eurozone Credit Markets Cheer as ECB Private QE Begins (My Publications)

The ECB's corporate bond purchase program began yesterday with purchases concentrated in utilities and telecoms, according to media sources. This is consistent with the structure of the market, and the fact that bond issues by firms in these sectors are the largest and most liquid. But debt issued by consumer staples firms likely also featured prominently.

9 Oct. 2015 FOMC Members Sticking to Previous Positions, Mostly (My Publications)

The FOMC minutes showed both sides of the hike debate are digging in their heels. As the doves are a majority--rates haven't been hiked--the tone of the minutes is, well, a bit do vish. But don't let that detract from the key point that, "Most participants continued to anticipate that, based on their assessment of current economic conditions and their outlook for economic activity, the labor market, and inflation, the conditions for policy firming had been met or would likely be met by the end of the year." Confidence in this view has diminished among "some" participants, however, worried about the impact of the strong dollar, falling stock prices and weaker growth in China on U.S. net exports and inflation.

9 Oct. 2015 Three-Speed LatAm Inflation - Brazil And Mexico the Outliers (My Publications)

The big four LatAm economies, Brazil, Mexico, Colombia and Chile, released September inflation this week and the data showed three clear--and contrasting--trends. Inflation is accelerating in the Andes, whereas the headline rate hit another historic low in Mexico. Inflation in Brazil is still the depressing outlier, with annual CPI inflation hovering around 9.5% year-over-year in recent months, well above the rates of its regional peers. But it is close to peaking, at last.

9 Sept. 2015 Cyclical Recovery in the Eurozone Goes from Strength to Strength (My Publications)

Final Q2 GDP data yesterday indicate the euro area economy was stronger than initially estimated in the first half of the year. Real GDP rose 0.4% quarter-on-quarter in Q2, slightly higher than the initial estimate of 0.3, following an upwardly revised 0.5% increase in Q1. Upward revisions to GDP in Italy were the key driver of the more upbeat growth picture. The revisions mean that annualised Eurozone growth is now estimated at 1.8% in the first six months of the year, up from the previous 1.4%, consistent with the bullish message from real M1 growth and the composite PMI.

9 Oct. 2015 Drag from Net Trade will be Key Story in German Q3 GDP Data (My Publications)

Trade data yesterday added to the downbeat impression of the German economy, following poor manufacturing data earlier in the week. Exports plunged 5.2% month-to-month in August--the second biggest monthly fall ever--pushing the year-over-year rate down to 4.4%, from a revised 6.3% in July. Surging growth in the past six months, and base effects pointed to a big fall in August, but we didn't expect a collapse.

9 November. 2016 With Trump the Likely winner, what next for policy and Markets? (My Publications)

The verdict is not yet definitive, but prudence dictates we must now assume victory for Donald Trump. The immediate implication of President Trump is global risk-off, with stocks everywhere falling hard, government bonds rallying, alongside gold and the Swiss franc. The dollar is the outlier; usually the beneficiary when fear is the story in global markets, it has fallen overnight because the risk is a U.S. story.

9 Nov. 2015 The Unemployment Rate Is the Key Measure of Labour Market Slack (My Publications)

The Monetary Policy Committee continues to assert that it can leave interest rates at rock-bottom levels, even though the unemployment rate has returned to its pre-recession level, because it understates the extent of slack in the labour market. If that hypothesis were correct, however, the relationship between the unemployment rate and wage growth would have weakened. But this clearly has not happened, as our first chart shows.

9 November. 2016 Trump Stuns LatAm... Banxico Likely Will Have to Act (My Publications)

As it became clear that Donald Trump would beat Hillary Clinton to win the U.S. presidency, EM currencies came under severe pressure, fearing his economic and immigration policies. Some of the initial pressure is easing as markets digest the news and following Mr. Trump's conciliatory tone in his victory speech. But the proposals have been made and the MXN and other key LatAm assets likely will remain very stressed in the near term.

9 Sept. 2015 Ignore Swings in Random Labor Force Data: Focus on Job Gains (My Publications)

We read after the employment report that the drop in the unemployment rate was somehow not significant, because it was due in p art to a reported 41K drop in the size of the labor force, completing a 404K cumulative contraction over the three months to August. In our view, though, analysts need to take a broader approach to the picture painted by the household survey, which is much more volatile and less reliable than the payroll survey over short periods.

9 Sept. 2015 Inflation still the key concern for Andes' central banks (My Publications)

Colombia's August inflation rate exceeded BanRep's 2-to-4% target range yet again, rising to a six-year high of 4.7%, from 4.5% in July. The signs of stabilization over the previous couple of months proved to be temporary. Core inflation has jumped above the upper bound of the inflation target too, climbing to 4.2%--the highest rate since 2009--in August from 4.0% in July, suggesting that the pass-through from the depreciating currency into consumer prices is starting to hurt. Inflation in tradables jumped in August to 5.2% from 4.7%, underscoring the hit from the COP's drop.

Eurozone H1 2017 Outlook - A Late-Cycle EZ Economy: Higher Inflation and Modestly Lower Growth (My Publications)

The Eurozone economy will have a bright start to 2017, but we think growth over the year as a whole will slow modestly compared with 2016.....

H2 2017 Eurozone Outlook - The Eurozone Economy is Doing Well, but Will it Last? (My Publications)

Pantheon Macroeconomics is pleased to make available to you our Outlooks for the second half of 2017 for the US, Eurozone, UK, Asia, and Latin America. These reports present our key views, giving you a concise summary of our economic and policy expectations. If you are interested in seeing publications which you don't already receive, please request a complimentary trial

US 15 September 2017 Core CPI Mean-Reverts, Hefty Storm-Induced Increases Ahead? (My Publications)

The run of soft core CPI numbers is over. The average 0.18% increase over the past two months probably is a good indication of the underlying trend -- the prints would have been close to this pace in both months had it not been for wild swings in the lodging component -- and the other one-time oddities of recent months' have faded.

9 September. 2016 The ECB Underwhelms, But QE Extension is Likely in December (My Publications)

Yesterday's ECB policy decision was a carbon copy of the announcement in July. The central bank maintained its key refinancing rate at 0.00%, and also kept its deposit and marginal lending facility rates unchanged at -0.4% and 0.25% respectively. The ECB also kept the pace of QE unchanged at €80B per month. Finally, the central bank refrained from formally extending QE.

9 September. 2016 Political Turbulence in Mexico Won't Derail Fiscal Consolidation (My Publications)

Political developments are clouding the horizon in Mexico, at least temporarily. Mexico's Finance Minister Luis Videgaray, the mastermind behind President Enrique Peña Nieto's most important economic reforms, resigned on Wednesday. José Antonio Meade, a former finance chief, has been tapped to replace him.

9 September. 2016 Inventories are Key to Q3 Growth, but Anything Could Happen (My Publications)

Inventories subtracted 1.3 percentage points from headline GDP growth in the second quarter and were by far the biggest constraint on the economy. This was the fifth straight drag from inventories, but it was more than twice the average hit over the previous year.

9 September. 2016 iPhone Price Hike Underlines Incoming In ation Shock (My Publications)

The consequences of sterling's sharp depreciation for inflation were brought home yesterday by the news that the iPhone 7 will cost more than its predecessor. The entry-level version is priced at £60 more than its iPhone 6S equivalent. Of course, the new version is more advanced, but the fact that the dollar price held steady, at $649, demonstrates the U.K. price hike entirely is due to the adverse impact of the weaker pound.

9 Nov. 2015 Investors Should Brace for a Poor German Q3 GDP Report (My Publications)

Friday's industrial production data capped another dreadful week for German manufacturing. Output fell 1.1% month-to-month in September, pushing the year-over-year rate lower to 0.2%, from a revised 2.9% in August. The 0.6% upward revision of the previous month's data makes the data slightly less awful than the headline, but the details showed weakness across all core sectors. The underlying trend in production is stable at about 1.2% year-over-year, but downbeat new orders suggest it will weaken in the fourth quarter.

9 Nov. 2015 Inflation Still a Headache for South American Central Banks (My Publications)

Three of the big LatAm economies-- Brazil, Colombia and Chile--released October inflation last week; the data are still showing the pass-through effects of currency depreciation during the first half of the year into prices, though, at different degrees. LatAm currencies have been hit by the weakness in commodity prices and negative sentiment towards EM generally.

9 March 2017 ADP Report Raises the Chance of a Blockbuster February Jobs Number (My Publications)

We expected a consensus-beating ADP employment number for February, but the 298K leap was much better than our forecast, 210K. The error now becomes an input into our payroll model, shifting our estimate for tomorrow's official number to 250K; our initial forecast was 210K.

9 March 2017 The Chancellor Sticks to Plans for an Intense Fiscal Tightening (My Publications)

The Chancellor lived up to his reputation for fiscal conservatism yesterday and is pressing ahead with a tough fiscal tightening. He hopes that this will create scope to loosen policy if the economy struggles after the U.K. leaves the EU in 2019, but we remain concerned his "fiscal headroom" will be much smaller than he currently anticipates.

9 March 2017 The Devil is in the De tail for the ECB's Communication Today (My Publications)

We predict no major policy changes at the ECB today. We think the central bank will leave its main refinancing and deposit rates unchanged at 0.00% and -0.4%, respectively. We also expect the ECB will leave the pace of QE unchanged at €60 per month until December 2017, at least.

9 Mar. 2015 Surging Job Gains, and Sub-Nairu Unemployment to Force June Hike (My Publications)

In the wake of the February employment report, the implied probability of a June rate hike, measured by the fed funds future, jumped to 89% from 71%. The market now shows the chance of a funds rate at 75bp by the end of the year at just over 60%. That still looks low to us, but it is a big change and we very much doubt it represents the end of the shift in expectations.

9 Mar. 2015 Currency Depreciation is Affecting Inflation Expectations in LatAm (My Publications)

Brazil's central bank is in a very delicate situation. The economy is on the verge of another recession, but at the same time the BRL is falling, inflation expectations are rising and the inflation rate is overshooting. Fiscal policy is also tightening to restore macro stability magnifying the squeeze on growth.

9 June. 2016 The Inventory Rundown isn't Over, but the Intensity Will Soon Diminish (My Publications)

The collapse in capital spending in the oil sector last year was the biggest single drag on the manufacturing sector, by far. The strong dollar hurt too, as did the slowdown in growth in China, but most companies don't export anything. Capex has fallen in proportion to the drop in oil prices, so our first chart strongly suggests that the bottom of the cycle is now very near.

9 Mar. 2015 A Strong Consumer is Helping to Lift GDP Growth in the Eurozone (My Publications)

The second estimate of Eurozone GDP confirmed that the economy grew 0.3% quarter-on-quarter in the final three months of last year, up slightly from 0.2% in the third quarter. Gross fixed capital formation and household consumption both rose 0.4%, but the improving trend in euro area GDP growth is almost exclusively driven by consumer spending.

9 May 2017 Chainstore Sales Rebound Points to Robust Q2 Consumption (My Publications)

If the Redbook chain store sales survey moved consistently in line with the official core retail sales numbers, it would attract a good deal more attention in the markets. We appreciate that brick-and-mortar retailers are losing market share to online sellers, but the rate at which sales are moving to the web is quite steady and easy to accommodate when comparing the Redbook with the official data.

9 May 2017 Colombian Inflation is Heading Lower, Despite the Pause in April (My Publications)

Colombia's disinflation since mid-2016 has been driven by easing pressures on food prices, weak demand, and the better performance of the COP. But higher regulated prices at the start of the second quarter have triggered a pause in the downward trend.

9 May. 2016 Payrolls Will Rebound--Maybe not in May--and Wages Are Rising (My Publications)

The undershoot in April payrolls, relative to the consensus, is a story of a fluke number in just one sector. Retail payrolls reportedly shrank by 3K, after rising by an average of 52K over the previous six months. Our first chart shows clearly that the retail payrolls are quite volatile over short periods, with sudden and often inexplicable swings in both directions quite common.

9 Nov. 2015 Fed Set to Hike in December, and then Faster than Markets Expect (My Publications)

At a stroke, the October payroll report returned the short-term trend in payroll growth to the range in place since 2011, pushed the unemployment rate into the lower part of the Fed's Nairu range, and lifted the year-over-year rate of growth of hourly earnings to a six-year high. The FOMC has never quantitatively defined what it means by "some further improvement in the labor market", its condition for increasing rates, but if the October report does not qualify, it's hard to know what might fit the bill. We expect a 25bp increase in December.

9 May. 2016 More Timely EZ GDP Data also Means Larger Revisions (My Publications)

The trade-off between the timeliness and accuracy of the data is fundamental to macroeconomic analysis. Coincident data such as GDP, industrial production and retail sales are the most direct measures of economic activity, but their first estimates don't always tell the full story.

9 May. 2016 Banxico Will Wait for the Fed to Hike - No Reasons to Move Soon (My Publications)

Banxico left Mexico's benchmark interest rate at 3.75% on Thursday, maintaining its neutral tone and indicating that the balance of risks is unchanged for both inflation and growth. Policymakers remain confident that inflation will remain under control over the coming months, below 3%, but noted that they expect a brief increase above the target during Q4.

9 May 2017 Does the Economy Thrive Under "Strong and Stable" Government? (My Publications)

The Prime Minister has argued repeatedly during the general election campaign that Britain will prosper under a "strong and stable" Conservative government with a large majority. "Division in Westminster," she argued when calling the election last month, "...will risk our ability to make a success of Brexit and it will cause damaging uncertainty and instability to the country."

9 May 2017 Two Answers and Many Questions, as President Macron Settles in (My Publications)

Mr. Macron's victory in France answers two questions for markets, at least in the short run. Firstly, France will stay in the Eurozone, and Mr. Macron will not call a referendum on EU membership. Mr. Macron has come to power with a mandate to strengthen economic integration and co-operation between Eurozone economies.

9 Apr. 2015 German Manufacturing sector remains relatively subdued (My Publications)

The combination of upbeat survey data and solid consumer spending numbers indicate that the German economy is in good shape. But manufacturing data continue to disappoint; factory orders fell 0.9% month-to-month in February, equivalent to a 1.3% decline year-over-year.

8 September. 2016 The ECB Will Extend QE Today (My Publications)

Markets are looking for the ECB to extend QE today, and we think they will get their way. We expect the central bank to prolong the program by six months, to September 2017, and to maintain the pace of monthly purchases at €80B per month.

8 Dec. 2015 Small Firms Are Struggling to Recruit, and Price are Nudging Up (My Publications)

The release of the NFIB survey at 6.00AM eastern time this morning--really, they need a new PR advisor--doubtless will bring a flurry of headlines about rising wage pressures, with the expected compensation index rising by a startling three points to a new post-crash high. But this is not news, nor is the high, stable level of hiring intentions; these key labor market numbers were released last week in the NFIB Jobs Report, which appears the day before the official employment report. The data are simply extracted from the main NFIB survey.

8 December. 2016 The ECB Will Extend QE Today, but Also Signal its Eventual End (My Publications)

The scars from previous economic crises have not healed fully in the Eurozone, and we think the ECB will extend QE today, by six months to Q3 2017. We expect Mr. Draghi to retain his dovish bias in the opening statement, and to repeat the emphasis on downside risks, due to the weak external environment and political fears.

8 December. 2016 Will the Fed Move up the Dotplot in Anticipation of Fiscal Easing? (My Publications)

We're hearing a good deal of speculation about the dotplot after next week's FOMC meeting, with investors wondering whether the median dot will rise in anticipation of the increased inflation threat posed by substantial fiscal loosening under the new administration. We suspect not, though for the record we think that higher rate forecasts could easily be justified simply by the tightening of the labor market even before any stimulus is implemented.

8 Dec. 2015 Productivity Growth Still too Weak to Prevent Inflation Rebound (My Publications)

By any yardstick, U.K. productivity growth has been terrible in recent years. Output per hour exceeded its pre-recession peak only in the second quarter of 2015, and it has grown at an average annual rate of just 0.6% this decade. U.S. productivity growth has been equally dismal since 2010. But the U.K.'s performance is more worrying, because the productivity slump during the recession suggested scope for a period of catch-up. In the U.S., by contrast, productivity surged during the recession as firms cut headcount sharply.

8 Dec. 2015 Energy Production Will Depress German Industrial Output in Q4 (My Publications)

German industrial output was off to a sluggish start in the fourth quarter. Production eked out a marginal 0.2% month-to-month gain in October, pushing the year-over-year rate down to 0.0% from a revised 0.4% in September. Manufacturing output rose 0.6%, led by a 2.7% jump in production of capital goods, but the underlying trend in the sector overall is flat. On a more positive note, construction output rose 0.7% month-to-month in October, and leading indicators suggest this could be the beginning of a string of gains, lifting investment spending in coming quarters.

8 August. 2016 The Term Funding Scheme is Not a Game-Changer (My Publications)

Economists failed to foresee the U.K.'s growth spurt in 2013 partly because they underestimated the positive impact of the Funding for Lending Scheme, launched in mid-2012. In fact, the FLS was so successful at stimulating mortgage lending that it had to be "refocussed" to apply solely to business lending in January 2014.

8 August. 2016 Wage Gains Set to Slide in August, Delaying the Fed Until December (My Publications)

We were happy to see the 255K gain in July payrolls, but we remain nervous about the sustainability of such strong numbers. The jump in employment was very large relative to some of the key survey-based indicators of the pace of hiring, even after allowing for the 29K favorable swing in the birth/ death model, compared to a year ago, and the 27K jump in state and local government education jobs, likely due to seasonal adjustment problems

8 February 2017 Banxico to Hike Rates Tomorrow, but its Tone Likely Will be Softened (My Publications)

Banxico's likely will deliver the widely-anticipated rate hike this Thursday. Policymakers' recent actions suggests that investors should expect a 50bp increase, in line with TIIE pric ing and the market consensus. The balance of risks to inflation has deteriorated markedly on the back of the "gasolinazo", a sharp increase in regulated gasoline prices imposed to raise money and attract foreign investment.

8 February 2017 German Manufacturing Data Threw a Tantrum in December (My Publications)

German manufacturing data are all over the place at the moment. Earlier this week, data showed that new orders jumped toward the end of 2016, but yesterday's industrial production report was a shocker. Output plunged 3.0% month-to-month in December, pushing the year-over-year rate down to -0.7% from a revised +2.3% in November.

8 July. 2015 Evidence, so far, Points to Strong Q2 GDP Print in Germany (My Publications)

German GDP growth likely accelerated in the second quarter, following a disappointing 0.3% quarter-on-quarter expansion in Q1. Growth in the manufacturing sector remains modest, and the trend in consumers' spending remains solid. Industrial production was unchanged in May, pushing year-over-year growth to 2.1% from a revised 1.1% in April.

8 July. 2015 Mexican Consumers Upbeat, as Economic Fundamentals Improve (My Publications)

Household sentiment in Mexico continues to improve, consistent with tailwinds from low inflation, accommodative monetary policy, and the improving labor market. The consumers confidence index rose to 94.7 in June from 92.0 in May, with four of the five components improving, especially big-ticket purchasing expectations and expectations for the economy.

8 July. 2015 Oil to the Rescue as Core Trade Numbers Disappoint, Again (My Publications)

In the wake of the May international trade numbers, our hopes that net foreign trade would contribute more than a full percentage point to second quarter GDP growth have taken something of a knock. We're now looking for a 0.7pp contribution.

8 Jan. 2015 The ECB Will Be Forced to Act as The Eurozone Slips Into Deflation (My Publications)

Deflation officially arrived in the Eurozone yesterday as a 6.3% plunge in energy prices pushed the overall rate of inflation to -0.2% year-over-year in December, down sharply from 0.3% in November.

8 Jan. 2015 - Payroll Still Set for Big December Gain - ADP is Unreliable (My Publications)

We aren't revising our payroll forecast in the wake of the ADP report, which showed private payrolls rising by 241K in December. We expected a bigger increase because ADP tends to lag the official data for the previous month, and the BLS reported a 314K jump in private employment in November, but the "shortfall" is too small to matter.

8 February 2017 Housing Market Flagging Again as Income Squeeze Intensifies (My Publications)

The MPC's interest rate cut in August, and the continued willingness of banks to lend, bolstered the housing market immediately after the referendum. But the latest indicators suggest that the market is slowing again, as the financial pressures on households' incomes intensify.

8 February 2017 Seasonal Problems set to Depress Mortgage Applications Data (My Publications)

Mortgage applications have risen, net, over the past couple of months, despite the 70bp surge in 30-year mortgage rates since the election. Indeed, we'd argue that the increase in applications is a result of the spike in rates, because it likely scared would-be homebuyers, triggering a wave of demand from people seeking to lock-in rates, fearing further increases.

8 August. 2016 Brazil's Economy is Stabilizing. Mexico's is Slowing, Temporarily (My Publications)

While we were out, Brazil's economic and political position continued to improve. The recession eased in the second quarter and into July. Industrial production, for example, increased in June for the fourth consecutive month, rising by 1.1% month-to-month.

8 August 2017 Will Mexico's Economy Resilience Continue in the Second Half? (My Publications)

The Mexican economy maintained its relatively strong momentum in Q2. The first estimate of Q2 GDP, released last week, confirmed that growth was resilient during the first half of this year, despite the confidence hit caused by domestic and external headwinds.

7 September 2017 The ECB will Set up Markets Today for a QE Decision in Q4 (My Publications)

Today's ECB meeting will follow the same script as in July. No-one expects the central bank to make any formal changes to its policy settings. The ECB will keep its main refinancing and deposit rates at zero and -0.4%, respectively.

7 September. 2016 Capex Rebounding in Q3, Except in the Housing Component (My Publications)

If you had asked us in the spring where the action would be in capital spending over the summer, we would have said that the housing component was the best bet. Right now, though, the opposite seems more likely, with housing likely to be the weakest component of capex.

7 September. 2016 Copom Minutes Suggest that October Easing is Very Much Alive (My Publications)

The recent less-bad growth and inflation data in Brazil are encouraging news and are setting the stage for easing in October. The minutes of the Copom's August 31 monetary policy meeting, released yesterday, were less hawkish than in previous months, indicating that policymakers are gauging the possibility of cutting rates.

7 September 2017 Scrappage Schemes Will Only Postpone the Slump in Car Sales (My Publications)

Car manufacturers have been at the sharp end o f the slowdown in consumers' spending this year. In response, several brands have launched generous scrappage schemes, giving buyers a big discount when they trade in their old vehicle.

7 September 2017 Jobless Claims will Rocket After Harvey, but Timing is Tricky (My Publications)

The jobless claims numbers today likely will mark the end of the calm before the storm effect, even though the data cover the week ended September 1, and Harvey hit on August 26.

7 Sept. 2015 Poor New Orders in Germany, But Expect Rebound Next Month (My Publications)

The disappointing German factory orders ended the run of strong economic data last week. New orders fell 1.4% month-to-month in July, pushing the year-over-year rate down to a 0.6% fall from a 7.0% increase in June. This is a poor headline, but it partly reflects mean-reversion from last month's revised 1.8% jump. We expect a rebound next month, and the details also offer a useful reminder that these data are extremely volatile on a month-to-month basis.

7 September 2017 Japanese Regular Wages Breaking out of a 20-year Stagnation? (My Publications)

Japanese labour cash earnings data threw analysts another curveball in July, falling 0.3% year-over-year. At the same time, June earnings are now said to have risen by 0.4%, compared with a fall of 0.4% in the initial print.

7 September. 2016 How Will the U.K. Resolve the Immigration,Trade Dilemma? (My Publications)

Following the summer recess, the U.K. Government has turned to the unenviable task of weighing up how much economic pain to endure in order to reduce immigration. The Government's insistence that Brexit "must mean controls on the numbers of people who come to Britain from Europe" suggests it is prepared to sacrifice access to the single market in order to appease public opinion.

7 September. 2016 Q2 GDP Data Add to the Evidence of a Peak in the EZ Business Cycle (My Publications)

A plunge in imports saved the EZ economy from a contraction in second quarter GDP. Yesterday's final data showed that real GDP growth rose 0.3% quarter- on-quarter, slowing from a 0.5% jump in Q1. A 0.4 percentage points boost from net exports was the key driving force.

8 August 2017 Chinese Capital Outflows Well -Managed while Conditions Benign (My Publications)

The external environment was relatively benign for China in July. The euro and yen appreciated as markets began to question how long policy can remain on their current emergency settings.

8 August 2017 Watch the NFIB Survey for Clues to Job Growth, Capex and Inflation (My Publications)

The NFIB survey of small businesses today will show that July hiring intentions jumped by four points to +19, the highest level since November 2006. The NFIB survey has been running since 1973, and the hiring intentions index has never been sustained above 20.

8 Apr. 2016 Tame Inflation Pressures Leave Banxico Room to Breathe (My Publications)

Good news keeps on coming from Mexico, and the outlook is still favourable. Overall inflation pressures remain subdued and the domestic economy remains reasonably solid, despite a modest slowdown in recent months. Job creation remains robust, and real wages have been growing at a solid, non-inflationary pace.

8 Apr. 2016 Net Exports Likely Weighed on French GDP Growth Again in Q1 (My Publications)

External demand in France probably weakened in the first quarter. The trade deficit widened sharply to €5.2B in February, from a revised €3.9B in January, pushing the current account deficit to an 18-month high. It is tempting to blame the stronger euro, but that wasn't the whole story.

8 Apr. 2015 Slowly does it for upturn in the German manufacturing sector (My Publications)

German factory orders probably bounced a modest 0.3% month-to-month in February, equivalent to a 0.5% decline year-over-year. We expect private investment growth to have picked up in the first quarter, but leading indicators for the industrial sector in Germany are sending conflicting signals.

8 Apr. 2016 How Far Will the Labor Share in GDP Rise? (My Publications)

As recently as late 2008, the share of employee compensation in GDP was slightly higher than the average for the previous 20 years. But it would be wrong to argue, therefore, that the squeeze on labor is a phenomenon only of the past few years. It's certainly true that labor's share dropped precipitously from 2009 through 2011, and has risen only marginally since then.

8 July. 2016 German Economy Likely Stalled in Q2, but Don't Forget the Q1 Surge (My Publications)

German GDP growth jumped in the first quarter, but monthly economic data suggest the economy all but stalled in Q2. Yesterday's industrial production data are a case in point. Output slid 1.3% month-tomonth in May, pushing the year-over-year rate down to -0.4% from a revised 0.8% gain in April. Adding insult to injury, the month-to-month number for April was revised down by 0.3 percentage points

8 July. 2016 June Payrolls Should be Better than May, but no Return to Trend Yet (My Publications)

We have had a modest rethink of our June payroll forecast and have nudged up our number to 150K, still below the 180K consensus. Our forecast has changed because we have re-estimated some of our models, not because of the 172K increase in the ADP measure of private payrolls. ADP is a model-based estimate, not a reliable survey indicator.

8 November. 2016 Weather--not Brexit--is Culpable for Production and Retail Sales Swings (My Publications)

It would be a mistake to conclude much about the economic impact of the Brexit vote from today's official industrial production figures for September, and the British Retail Consortium's figures for retail sales in October.

8 Oct. 2015 Flat Mortgage Demand Signals a Pause in the Housing Recovery (My Publications)

We planned to write today about the rebound in housing market activity over the past few months, arguing that it is about to run out of steam in the face of the recent flat trend in mortgage applications. The Mortgage Bankers Associations' purchase applications index rocketed in the spring, but then moved in a narrow range from mid-April through late September. Then, out of the blue, the MBA reported a 27% leap in applications in the week ended October 2, taking the index to its highest level in more than five years.

8 Oct. 2015 Weak, but Stable, Trend in German Manufacturing Investment in Q3 (My Publications)

Yesterdays' industrial production report capped a poor week for German manufacturing. Output fell 1.2% month-to-month in August, well below the consensus, +0.2%, though note that a 0.5% upward revision to the July data made the August headline look worse. Similar to the factory orders report earlier this week--see our October 6th Monitor--base effects also mean that production accelerated to 2.5% year-over-year, from a revised 0.8% gain in July.

8 November. 2016 Rate Cuts are Coming in the Andes, Uncertainty Will Ease Soon (My Publications)

Inflation pressures are easing rapidly in Colombia, according to October's CPI report, released on Saturday. Inflation fell to 6.5% year-over-year in October, down from 7.3% in September; the consensus expectation was 6.7%.

8 November. 2016 Focus on the Improving Trend in German Manufacturing (My Publications)

Demand for German manufacturing goods slipped at the end of Q3. Yesterday's report showed that factory orders fell 0.6% month-to-month in September, constrained by weakness in domestic demand and falling export orders to other EZ economies.

8 May 2017 Rocky Commodity Markets Put LatAm FX under Temporary Stress (My Publications)

LatAm assets have done well in recent weeks on the back of upbeat investor risk sentiment, low volatility in developed markets and a relatively benign USD. A less confrontational approach from the U.S. administration to trade policy has helped too.

8 November. 2016 If Clinton Loses, Most U.S. Forecasting Models Will be Wrong (My Publications)

We are not political analysts or psephologists, but we note that each of the nine separate election forecasting models tracked by the New York Times suggests that Hillary Clinton will be president, with odds ranging from 67% to greater than 99%.

8 Sept. 2015 No Loss of Momentum in August Employment, Despite Headline (My Publications)

The soft-looking August payroll number almost certainly will be revised up substantially, as the readings for this month have been in each of the past six years. Runs of remarkably consistent revisions--from 53K to 104K, with a median of 66K--don't happen by chance very often. A far more likely explanation is that the seasonal adjustments are flawed, having failed to keep up with changes in employment patterns since the crash. If the median revision is a good guide to what happens this year, the August number will be pushed up to 240K, in line with our estimate of the underlying trend and much more closely aligned with the message from a host of leading indicators.

8 Sept. 2015 The German Manufacturing Sector is Still Stuck in Neutral (My Publications)

Industrial production in Germany had a decent start to the third quarter. Output rose 0.7% month-to-month in July, less than we and the consensus expected, but the 0.5% upward revision to the June data brings the net headline almost in line with forecasts. Rebounds of 2.8% and 3.2% month-to-month in the capital goods and construction sectors respectively were the key drivers of the gain, following similar falls in June. A 3.2% fall in consumer goods production, however, was a notable drag.

8 September 2017 Production Likely Jumped in July, but it Won't Drive a Q3 Revival (My Publications)

The consensus that industrial production increased by just 0.2% month-to-month in July looks too cautious.

8 September. 2016 Claims, JOLTS, and Sales Don't Support the Grim ISM Message (My Publications)

We argued yesterday that the steep declines in the ISM surveys in August, both manufacturing and services, likely were one-time events, triggered by a combination of weather events, seasonal adjustment issues and sampling error. These declines don't chime with most other data.

8 September. 2016 Evidence of the Inefficacy of Monetary Stimulus Mounts (My Publications)

Evidence that households are not benefiting much from the Monetary Policy Committee's easing measures mounted yesterday, after the release of August data on advertised borrowing rates. Our first chart shows the drop in swap rates and average quoted mortgage rates since the end of last year.

8 September 2017 China Probably is Content with its Modest "Safe-haven" Role, for now (My Publications)

Geopolitical tensions have risen sharply for Asia in the last few months, yet the RMB has appreciated sharply. China's currency appears to be playing some kind of safe haven role.

8 September 2017 Brazil's Central Bank Eases Boldly, but Hints at Slower Cuts Ahead (My Publications)

Brazil's improving economic and political situation allowed the BCB to cut the Selic rate by 100bp to 8.25% at its Wednesday meeting, matching expectations.

8 September 2017 Jobless Claims will be Elevated for Some Time, Payroll hit Uncertain (My Publications)

The 62K jump in jobless claims for the week ended September 2 is a hint of what's to come. Claims usually don't surge until the second week after major hurricanes, because people have better things to do in the immediate aftermath, so we are braced for a further big increase next week.

8 September 2017 The ECB is worried about a strong euro (My Publications)

The ECB made no changes to its policy stance yesterday. The central bank left its refinancing and deposit rates at 0.00% and -0.4%, respectively, and maintained the pace of QE at €60B per month. The program will run until December "or beyond, if necessary."

8 May 2017 Inflation Report Likely to Reaffirm Slim Chances of a 2017 Rate Hike (My Publications)

This week's MPC meeting and Inflation Report likely will support the dominant view in markets that the chances of a 2017 rate hike are remote, even though inflation will rise further above the 2% target over the coming months. Overnight index swap markets currently are pricing-in only a 20% chance of an increase in Bank Rate this year.

8 May 2017 Fed Hawks Will Focus More on Unemployment than Wage Gains (My Publications)

At their March meeting FOMC members' range of forecasts for the unemployment rate in the fourth quarter of this year ranged from 4.4% to 4.7%, with a median of 4.5%. But Friday's report showed that the unemployment rate hit the bottom of the forecast range in April.

8 June. 2015 Expect more jobs reports like May's, piling pressure on the Fed (My Publications)

The winter hit to payrolls is now ancient history. Private employment rose by an average of 273K per month in the second half of last year, so May's 262K has restored normal service, more or less. History strongly suggests the number will be revised up, so we are happy to argue that the data convincingly support our view that the weakness in late winter and early spring was temporary, substantially due to the severe weather.

8 June. 2015 Inflation improving in key LatAm countries, but risks remain (My Publications)

Tomorrow, Mexico's INEGI will release its inflation report for the second half of May, which is of key importance for Banxico's monetary policy. The Bank, in particular governor Agustin Carstens, has said on many occasions that it will watch external conditions and their impact on consumer prices closely. We expect inflation to edge down to 2.9% year-over-year in May, thanks to a 0.1% increase in the second half.

8 June. 2015 Slowly Does it for German Manufacturing Upturn in Q2 (My Publications)

New orders data indicate that German manufacturing enjoyed a strong start to the second quarter. Factory orders rose 1.4% month-to-month in April, equivalent to a modest 0.4% gain yearover- year, down from a revised 2.0% in March. The numbers put new orders on track for a solid 1.8% quarter-on-quarter gain in Q2--assuming no change in May and June--but these data are volatile, making this estimate highly uncertain.

8 June 2017 Subdued Core Inflation Gives ECB Doves the Upper Hand Today (My Publications)

The ECB will keep all its policy parameters unchanged today. The refi and deposit rates will be maintained at 0.00% and -0.4%, respectively, and the pace of QE will stay at €60B per month, running until the end of the year.

8 June 2017 Stepping on the First Rung of the Housing Ladder isn't Getting Easier (My Publications)

Many observers hoped that the silver lining of a slowdown in house price growth this year would be that more first-time buyers could step onto the first rung of the housing ladder. Instead, purchasing a first home has become even harder for FTBs with modest deposits.

8 July. 2016 Muted Headline Inflation in Mexico, but Core has Hit Banxico's Target (My Publications)

Favourable inflation conditions in Mexico remain in place with June consumer prices increasing just 0.1% month-to-month, unadjusted, better than expected. A modest gain in core prices was largely offset by falling non-core prices, so year-over-year inflation edged down to 2.5% from 2.6% in May.

8 June 2017 Hiring Plans Signal 200K-plus Summer Payroll Gains (My Publications)

Our core view on the May payroll number remains that the single most likely cause of the unexpectedly modest increase is a seasonal adjustment error, triggered when the survey is conducted early in the month.

8 June. 2016 Colombia's Inflation Picture Still Ugly, but it Will Improve (My Publications)

Brazil's interim government has been trying to put the kibosh on the vicious circle of recession, capital outflows, and political pandering that has dogged the country for so long. In his first few weeks at the helm, despite the political turmoil, Mr. Temer has started to tackle Brazil's fiscal mess, the country's biggest headache.

8 June. 2016 EZ Domestic Demand Rose Solidly in Q1, but Will Slow in Q2 (My Publications)

The third estimate of euro area growth in the first quarter provides clear evidence that measuring GDP is not an exact science. Real GDP rose 0.6% quarter-on-quarter in Q1, accelerating from 0.4% in Q4. This latest estimate is higher than the previous estimate, 0.5%, but in line with the first calculation. Eurostat and all the large Eurozone economies now provide early estimates of GDP, before data for the full quarter is available.

8 March 2017 Rising Interest Payments may Slash the Chancellor's Rainy Day Fund (My Publications)

The Chancellor's Budget today looks set to prioritise retaining scope to loosen policy if the economy struggles in future, rather than reducing the near-term fiscal tightening. In November, the OBR predicted that cyclically-adjusted borrowing would fall to 0.8% of GDP in 2019/20, comfortably below the 2% limit stipulated by the Chancellor's new fiscal rules.

8 May 2017 Mr. Macron Easily Defeats Ms. Le Pen: Now the Hard Work Begins (My Publications)

Early results suggest that Mr. Macron has comfortably beat Marine Le Pen to become French president, defying a leak of emails and other documents from his En Marche campaign over the weekend. The final results won't be published until Monday morning, but the initial estimate indicates that Mr. Macron will edge Ms. Le Pen by 65.1% to 34.9%.

8 March 2017 Focus on the Trend in German Factory Orders, to Retain Sanity (My Publications)

A setback in German manufacturing orders was coming after the jump at the end of 2016, but yesterday's headline was worse than we expected. Factory orders crashed 7.4% month-to-month in January, more than reversing the 5.4% jump in December. The year-over-year rate fell to -0.8% from a revised +8.0%. The decline was the biggest since 2009, but the huge volatility in domestic capital goods orders means that the headline has to be taken with a large pinch of salt.

8 March 2017 Could a Bad Payroll Report for February Really Stop the Fed? (My Publications)

With the FOMC decision now just seven days away, the forcefulness of recent Fed speakers has led many analysts to argue that only a spectacularly bad payroll report, or an external shock, can prevent a rate hike next week. External shocks are unpredictable, by definition, and we think the chance of a startlingly terrible employment report is low, though substantial sampling error does occasionally throw the numbers off-track.

8 June. 2016 Job Openings Likely Dipped in April, but Remain Very High (My Publications)

A casual glance at our char t below, which shows the number of job openings from the JOLTS report, seems to fit our story that the slowdown in payrolls in April and May--perhaps triggered by the drop in stocks in January and February--will prove temporary. Job openings dipped, but have recovered and now stand very close to their cycle high.

8 March 2017 Brazil's Economy Struggled Late Last Year, Will it Grow in Q1? (My Publications)

Markets have been positively surprised by Brazil's rapid disinflation, the efforts at fiscal reform, and the prospect of growth in the economy this year. The Ibovespa index is now above its pre-crisis high and the real has approached the key level of three per USD in recent months. But the latest GDP report, released yesterday, showed that the economy struggled in Q4. Real GDP fell 0.9% quarter-on-quarter, worse than the revised 0.7% drop in Q3.

5 June 2017 Politics at Centre-Stage in Mexico, Volatility Likely Will Ease, for now (My Publications)

Investors in Mexico likely will focus early this week on yesterday's gubernatorial election results in Nayarit, Coahuila and the State of Mexico. The latter is especially important, because it is viewed as a possible guide to the 2018 presidential election.

5 June 2017 May Payrolls Hit by the Calendar, Expect a Rebound, and a Fed Hike (My Publications)

We don't believe that payrolls rose only 138K in May. History strongly suggests that when the May payroll survey is conducted relatively early in the month, payroll growth falls short of the prior trend.

3 June. 2016 A Perfect ECB Balancing Act, But it Will Become More Difficult Soon (My Publications)

The ECB stood pat yesterday, keeping its key refinancing and deposit rates unchanged at zero and -0.4%, respectively. The marginal lending facility rate was also left at 0.25%, and the monthly pace of QE was maintained at €80B, with a preliminary end-date in the first quarter of 2017. Purchases of corporate bonds will begin June 8, and the first new TLTRO auction will take place June 22.

3 June. 2016 Brazil's Recession Eased in Q1, But a Payback is Looming for Q2 (My Publications)

Brazil's recession eased considerably in the first quarter, due mainly to a slowing decline in gross fixed capital formation, a strong contribution from net exports, and a sharp, albeit temporary, rebound in government spending. Real GDP fell 0.3% quarter-on-quarter, much less bad than the revised 1.3% contraction in Q4.

3 June. 2016 May Payrolls Constrained By Verizon Strike, but Should be OK (My Publications)

The downside surprise in April payrolls reflected weakness in just three components--retail, construction, and government--compared to their prior trends. Of these, we think only the construction numbers are likely to remain soft in May. Had it not been for the Verizon strike, then, we would have expected payrolls to rise by just over 200K in May, but the 35K strike hit means our forecast is 170K.

3 June. 2015 Inflation is rising, but the ECB will confirm its dovish stance today (My Publications)

In yesterday's Monitor, we laid out the macroeconomic case for moderately higher inflation in the second half of the year. But subdued market based inflation expectations indicate that the ECB will retain its dovish bias for now. The central bank's preferred measure, 5-year/5-year forward inflation expectations, have only increased modestly in response to QE, and have even declined recently on the back of higher market volatility.

3 June. 2015 Brazil's Industrial meltdown continues - Better news elsewhere (My Publications)

Brazil industrial production continues to edge lower, falling 1.2% month-to-month in April, a 7.6% year-over-year drop. In March, output was down only 3.4% year-over-year, but the data are volatile in the short-term. The trend is about -7%, down from -3.8% in the second half of last year.

3 July. 2015 Will Desperation Force Greece to Print its Own "euros" and IOUs? (My Publications)

Rumours of Greece stepping back from the brink and accepting its creditors' demands, have taunted markets this week. But the response from the EU, so far, is that talks will not resume before this weekend's referendum. Our base case is a "yes" to the question of whether Greece should accept the proposal from the EU and IMF.

3 June. 2015 April trade data could be wild - They matter for Q2 GDP forecasts (My Publications)

We were a bit surprised to see our forecast for the April trade deficit is in line with the consensus, $44B, down from $51.4B in March, because the uncertainty is so great. The March deficit was boosted by a huge surge in non-oil imports following the resolution of the West Coast port dispute, while exports rose only slightly. As far as we can tell, ports unloaded ships waiting in harbours and at the docks, lifting the import numbers before reloading those ships.

3 Mar. 2015 Consumption and Construction Data Point to Sluggish Q1 GDP (My Publications)

Barring some sort of miracle, or substantial upward revision to prior data--it happens--first quarter consumption spending growth is unlikely to reach 3%, despite the robust 0.3% gain reported yesterday for January. Part of the problem is a basis effect.

3 Mar. 2015 Weak Euro Boosts Orders for Manufacturers (My Publications)

Industrial companies in the Eurozone are still struggling with low growth, but the outlook is stabilising following the near-recession late last year. The Eurozone manufacturing PMI was unchanged at 51.0 in February, trivially lower than the initial estimate of 51.1.

3 May 2017 April's Higher Manufacturing PMI Won't Be Sustained (My Publications)

The Markit/CIPS manufacturing PMI shot up to a three-year high of 57.3 in April, from 54.2 in March, bringing an end to the run of downbeat news on the economy. The performance of the U.K. manufacturing sector, however, remains underwhelming, given the magnitude of sterling's depreciation.

3 May 2017 BanRep Acted Boldly on Friday. Will the BCRP follow Suit Next Week? (My Publications)

Colombia's sluggish growth and near-term economic outlook resembles that of most other LatAm economies. Domestic demand is weak, credit conditions are tight, and confidence is depressed. The medium term outlook, however, is perking up, slowly.

3 May 2017 EZ Q1 GDP Growth Likely won't Live up to the Soaring Surveys (My Publications)

Survey data point to a very strong headline, 0.6%-to-0.7% quarter-on-quarter, in today's Q1 advance Eurozone GDP report. But the hard data have been less ebullient than the surveys. A GDP regression using retail sales, industrial production and construction points to a more modest 0.4% increase, implying a slowdown from the upwardly-revised 0.5% gain in Q4.

3 March 2017 Yellen and Fischer Won't Push Back Against a March Rate Hike Today (My Publications)

Speeches by Chair Yellen and Vice-Chair Fischer give the two most important Fed officials the perfect platform today to signal to markets whether rates will rise this month.

3 March 2017 Will the Chancellor Change the MPC's Inflation Target? (My Publications)

The CPIH--the controversial, modified version of the existing CPI that includes a measure of owner occupied housing, or OOH, costs--will become the headline measure of consumer price inflation when February's data are published on March 21.

3 March 2017 Banxico is Facing a Tough Dilemma, but the Copom is Sitting Pretty (My Publications)

Banxico's Quarterly Inflation Report--QIR--for Q4 2016, published this week, confirmed that the monetary authority is concerned about the slowing pace of economic activity and rising inflation pressures. Banxico noted that signs of a recovery have emerged in external demand, but it also pointed out that the Trump administration might impose policies which would hit FDI flows into Mexico.

3 March 2017 EZ Inflation Hit by Perfect Storm in Q1, Headline Will Ease in Q2 (My Publications)

Inflation pressures in the Eurozone are building rapidly, setting up an "interesting" ECB meeting next week. Yesterday's advance CPI report showed that inflation edged up further in February to 2.0%, from 1.8% in January. The headline rate is now in line with the ECB's target, and up sharply from the average of 0.2% last year.

3 July. 2015 Surprising But Not Sustainable Jump in Brazil's Industrial Output (My Publications)

The second quarter is over but it is too early to give a reliable forecast of the pace of Brazilian GDP growth. However, an array of leading and coincident indicators points to a steep contraction in Q2 and a bleak second half of the year. Unemployment is leaping higher, along with inflation and household debt, and the ongoing monetary and fiscal tightening will further hurt the real economy ahead.

3 July 2017 Will the Argentinian Economy be Oblivious to Political Risks? (My Publications)

Argentina's economic data released last week confirm that the economy is improving. Our core view, for now, is that the economy will continue to defy rising political uncertainty, both domestic and external.

3 February 2017 The U.S. Puts Germany's Huge Trade Surplus Under the Spotlight (My Publications)

In our Monitor on January 27 we speculated that the new U.S. administration would see Germany's booming trade surplus as a bone of contention. We were right. Earlier this week, Peter Navarro, the head of Mr. Trump's new National Trade Council, fired a broadside against Germany, accusing Berlin for using the weak euro to gain an unfair trade advantage visa-vis the U.S.

3 February 2017 Brazil's Q4 Industrial Output was Poor, Q1 Will be Much Better (My Publications)

Brazil's Q4 industrial production report, released Wednesday, confirmed that the recovery remained sluggish at the end of last year. December's print alone was relatively strong, though, and the cyclical correction in inventories--on the back of improving demand--lower interest rates, and the better external outlook, all suggest that the industrial economy will do much better this year.

3 February 2017 MPC Signals Newfound Supply Optimism, no Near-Term Rate Hike (My Publications)

The absence of hawkish undertones in the minutes of the MPC's meeting or in the Inflation Report forecasts took markets by surprise yesterday. The dominant view on the Committee remains that the economy will slow over the next couple of years, preventing wage growth from reaching a pace which would put inflation on trac k permanently to exceed the 2% target.

3 Feb. 2015 Inflation will trough in Q3 (My Publications)

One of the questions we have been asked recently is when inflation in the euro area will trough this year. This is difficult to answer without a look at the structural drivers of price pressures in Europe.

3 Feb. 2015 Behind the Noise, U.S. Economic Fundamentals are Solid (My Publications)

We are not bothered by either the drop in real December consumption, all of which was due to a weather-induced plunge in utility spending, or the drop in the ISM manufacturing index, which is mostly a story about hopeless seasonal adjustments.

3 Dec. 2015 Low Inflation Expectations Won't Become Self-Fulfilling (My Publications)

Households' inflation expectations have fallen again over the last few months, but we doubt they will constrain the forthcoming rebound in actual inflation. Past experience shows that inflation expectations are more of a coincident than a leading indicator of inflation. In addition, inflation is weakest right now in sectors where demand is relatively insensitive to price changes, so, when retailers' costs rise, they won't pay much heed to households' expectations.

3 Dec. 2015 Yellen Throws Down the Gauntlet, But Gently, Leaving Get-Outs (My Publications)

Short of saying "We're going to hike rates in two weeks' time", Dr. Yellen's view of the immediate economic and policy outlook, set out in her speech yesterday, could hardly have been clearer. Yes, she threw in the usual caveats: "...we take account of both the upside and downside risks around our projections when judging the appropriate stance of monetary policy", and saying the FOMC will have to evaluate the data due ahead of this month's meeting, but her underlying message was straightforward.

3 February 2017 Upside Risk For Payrolls and Hourly Earnings in January Data Today (My Publications)

Our payroll model relies heavily on lagged indicators of the pace of hiring, most of which have improved in recent months after a sustained, though modest, softening which began last spring. That's why we expected an above-consensus reading from ADP on Wednesday and from the BLS today.

3 January 2017 Brazil stabilizes while Mexico softens (My Publications)

The data in LatAm have been all over the map in recent weeks. Brazil's cyclical stabilization continues, while Mexican numbers confirm that the economy has come under pressure in recent months.

3 July 2017 Is the Jump in Eurozone Core Inflation Really Temporary? (My Publications)

Friday's euro area inflation reported capped a difficult week for EZ bondholders, although most of the damage was done beforehand by the advance German data.

3 July 2017 National Accounts Expose Britain's Economic Fragility (My Publications)

Last week's national accounts confirmed that the economy lost momentum abruptly in Q1, with net trade and investment failing to offset weaker growth in households' spending.

3 July 2017 Three Jobs Reports in Nine Weeks set to Shift Market Rate Expectations (My Publications)

The next nine weeks bring three jobs reports, which will determine whether the Fed hikes again in September, as we expect, and will also help shape market expectations for December and beyond.

3 July 2017 China's Industrial Complex still Strong in Q2, H2 in Draghi's Hands (My Publications)

We expect China's quarterly real GDP growth in the second quarter to edge down from Q1, but only because Q1 growth was unsustainable. The official data shows real GDP growth at 1.3% quarter-onquarter in Q1.

3 January 2017 The Eurozone in 2017: Higher Inflation and Slower M1 Growth? (My Publications)

A bullish EZ money supply report was the key highlight while we were away over the holidays. M3 growth in the euro area accelerated to 4.8% year-over-year in November from 4.4% in October.

3 January 2017 Consumer Confidence Gains Overstate Spending (My Publications)

While we were out, the data showed that consumers' confidence has risen very sharply since the election, hitting 15-year highs, but actual spending has been less impressive and housing market activity appears poised for a marked slowdown.

3 January 2017 Slowing Real Income Growth Will Define the 2017 U.K. Economy (My Publications)

The U.K. economy retained its momentum last year, despite the seismic shock of the vote to leave the EU. Quarter-on-quarter GDP growth averaged 0.5% in the first three quarters of 2016, matching 2015's rate and the average pace of growth across the Atlantic.

3 May 2017 Fed on Hold Today After Mixed Data, but a June Hike Still Looks Likely (My Publications)

The Fed likely will do nothing today, both in terms of interest rates and substantive changes to the statement. We'd be very surprised to hear anything new on the Fed's plans for its balance sheet.

3 May. 2016 Auto Sales Set for Clear April Rebound, Boosting Consumption (My Publications)

The startling 5.5% drop in auto sales in March left sales at just 16.5M, well below the 17.4M average for the previous three months and the lowest level since February last year. A combination of the early Easter, which causes serious problems for the seasonal adjustments, and the lagged effect of the plunge in stock prices in January and February, likely explains much of the decline.

30 Jan. 2015 Plunging Oil Prices Boost Chile's Consumers - Businesses Still Weak (My Publications)

Chile's economy is showing the first reliable signs of improvement, at last. December retail sales rose 1.9% year-over-year, up from 0.4% in November, indicating that household expenditure is starting to revive, in line with a pick-up in consumer confidence and the improving labor market.

30 January 2017 Can the Second Half Growth Momentum Carry into this Year? (My Publications)

We were nervous ahead of the GDP numbers on Friday, wondering if our forecast of a 1.5 percentage point hit from foreign trade was too aggressive. In the event, though, the trade hit was a huge 1.7pp, so domestic demand rose at a 3.5% pace.

30 January 2017 Mexico's Trade Gap is Shrinking, but Medium-Term Outlook is Cloudy (My Publications)

Mexico's trade balance shrank slightly last year, to USD13B, from USD14.6B in 2015. An improvement in the non-energy deficit was the main driver, while the energy gap worsened.

30 Jan. 2015 Leading indicators are sending a clear signal of higher GDP growth ahead (My Publications)

Money supply data in the euro area are sending an increasingly upbeat signal on the economy. The increase in narrow money growth is the key variable here, now pointing to a noticeable acceleration in GDP growth later this year. Allowing for the usual lags between upturns in M1 and the economy, we should start to see this in the second and third quarter.

30 Jan. 2015 Downside Risk for Fourth Quarter GDP Growth - Inventories a Risk (My Publications)

We are nervous about the first estimate of fourth quarter GDP growth, due today. The consensus forecast is a decent 3.1%, but we are struggling mightily to get anywhere near that.

30 August. 2016 Reports of the Economy's Resilience are Greatly Exaggerated (My Publications)

Over the sleepy August holidays, a view has gained traction in the media that the U.K. economy is showing little damage from the Brexit vote. Optimists argue that the size and composition of the 0.6% quarter-on-quarter rise in Q2 GDP, the 1.4% month-to-month jump in retail sales volumes in July, and the slight dip in the unemployment claimant count demonstrate that the recovery is in good shape.

30 August. 2016 Strong Consumption Set to Support Robust Third Quarter GDP Growth (My Publications)

In the wake of the robust July data and the upward revisions to June, real personal consumption--which accounts for 69% of GDP--appears set to rise by at least 3% in the third quarter, and 3.5% is within reach. To reach 4%, though, spending would have to rise by 0.3% in both August and September, and that will be a real struggle given July's already-elevated auto sales and, especially, overstretched spending on utility energy.

30 January 2017 Real M1 Indicates a Solid Start to 2017, but What Happens Next? (My Publications)

The business cycle upturn in the Eurozone likely will remain resilient in the first half of 2017. Friday's money supply data showed that headline M3 growth increased to 5.0% in December, from 4.9% in November.

30 January 2017 Will the Inflation Report Support Markets' 2017 Rate Hike View? (My Publications)

Markets' expectations for official interest rates have shifted up over the last fortnight, and the consensus view now is that the MPC will hike rates before the end of this year. As our first chart shows, the implied probability of interest rates breaching 0.25% in December 2017 now slightly exceeds 50%.

30 June 2017 Q1 National Accounts Won't Meet the Governor's Rate Hike Criteria (My Publications)

Markets will be extremely sensitive to economic data in the run-up to the MPC's next meeting on August 3, following signals from several Committee members that they think the cas e for a rate rise has strengthened.

30 June 2017 Temer's Fate Carries Risks, but a Currency Meltdown Isn't One (My Publications)

Brazil's unadjusted current account surplus soared to USD2.9B in May, its highest level since 2006, from USD1.1B in May 2016.

30 June. 2015 Greece and the Eurozone in Limbo Until the Referendum in Greece (My Publications)

Eurozone politicians are likely scrambling for a last gasp return to negotiations before the Greek bailout program ends at the end of today. But progress will likely be limited until we have the result of the planned Greek referendum on Sunday. Voters will be asked essentially on whether they agree with the proposal presented by the institutions. The government will campaign for a "no," but a "yes" looks more likely, based on polls that Greeks want to stay in the Eurozone.

30 June 2017 EZ Inflation Data are Complicating Life for the ECB and Markets (My Publications)

Advance country data indicate that headline EZ inflation fell slightly in June; we think the rate dipped to 1.3% year-over-year, from 1.4% in May.

30 June 2017 Core PCE Inflation set to Fall Again, but it won't Sway the Fed (My Publications)

We have argued recently that the year-over-year rates of core CPI and core PCE inflation could cross over the next year, with core PCE rising more quickly for the first time since 2010.

30 July. 2015 Ignore Volatile Commodity Prices, and Focus on Core Inflation (My Publications)

Volatile commodity prices make this week's inflation data in Germany and the Eurozone a wild card. Crude oil in euro terms is down about 20% month-to-month in July, which will weigh on energy prices. In Germany, though, we think higher core inflation offset the hit from oil, pushing inflation slightly higher to 0.4% year-over-year in July from 0.3% in June.

30 June 2017 China's Government Still has Room to Clean up, but what if they Balk? (My Publications)

In the yesterday's Monitor, we presented an exagerated upper-bound for China's bad debt problem, at 61% of GDP. The limitations of the data meant that we double-counted a significant portion of non-financial corporate--NFC--debt with financial corporations and government.

30 August. 2016 Real GDP Growth in the Eurozone is About to Come Down a Notch (My Publications)

Money supply data in the euro point to a cyclical peak in GDP growth this year. Headline M3 growth fell to 4.8% year-over-year in July, from 5.0% in June, chiefly due to a slowdown in narrow money. M1 growth declined to 8.4%, from 8.7%, as a result of weaker momentum in overnight deposits and currency in circulation.

30 August. 2016 Banxico is Waiting for Fiscal Policy Action, and the Fed (My Publications)

The minutes from Banxico's August 11 monetary policy meeting--in which Board members unanimously voted to keep rates on hold at 4.25%--confirmed that the bank's policy guidance remains broadly neutral. Subdued economic activity, favourable inflation and gradual fiscal consolidation explain policymakers' position.

3 Nov. 2015 Truck Sales Soaring, Lifted by Cheap Gas, Robust Confidence (My Publications)

Most of the time, markets view auto sales as a bellwether indicator of the state of the consumer. Vehicles are the biggest-ticket item for most households, after housing, and most people buy cars and trucks with credit. Auto purchase decisions, therefore, tend not to be taken lightly, and so are a good guide to peoples' underlying confidence and cashflow. We appreciate that things were different at the peak of the boom, when anyone could get a loan and homeowners could tap the rising values of their properties, but that's not the situation today.

3 November. 2016 Rates Will Rise in December, If Events Don't Intervene (My Publications)

The Fed left rates on hold yesterday, as expected, repeating its long-held core view that inflation will rise to 2% in the medium-term, requiring gradual increases in the fed funds rate.

3 November. 2016 MPC to Catch Out Markets Again with Lingering Dovish Tone (My Publications)

Markets are pricing-in just a 10% chance of the MPC cutting interest rates again within the next six months, odds that look too low given the strong likelihood that the economic recovery loses more pace.

3 Nov. 2015 Manufacturing Unlikely to be Past the Worst (My Publications)

The sharp and unexpected improvement in the Markit/CIPS manufacturing survey in October released on Monday raised hopes that the recession in the industrial sector might be over. A cool look at the evidence, however, suggests that this probably is just wishful thinking.

3 Nov. 2015 Inflation Will Rise Faster Than the ECB Expects Next Year (My Publications)

Mixed comments last week by members of the governing council raised doubts over the ECB's resolve to add further stimulus next month. But the message from senior figures and Mr. Draghi remains that the Central Bank intends to "re-assess" its monetary policy tools in December. Our main reading of last month's meeting is that Mr. Draghi effectively pre-committed to further easing. This raises downside risks in the event of no action, but the President normally doesn't disappoint the market in these instances.

3 May. 2016 BanRep Opts For Bold Rate Hike - Inflation a Priority, For Now (My Publications)

Policymakers in Colombia last Friday took aim at inflation by hiking interest rates by 50 basis points to 7.0%. The consensus expectation was for a 25bp increase. BanRep's bold move, which came on the heels of six consecutive 25bp increases since November, took Colombia's main interest rate to its highest level since March 2009.

3 May. 2016 Will GDP Growth in the Eurozone Accelerate This Year? (My Publications)

Last week's advance EZ GDP data for the first quarter suggest the economy shrugged off the volatility in financial markets. Eurostat's first estimate indicates that real GDP in the euro area rose 0.6% quarter-on-quarter in Q1, up from 0.3% in Q4, and above the consensus, 0.4%.

3 Sept. 2015 No Additional Easing, but ECB to Face Tough Questions on Inflation (My Publications)

Today's ECB meeting will be accompanied by an update of the staff projections, where the inflation outlook will be in the spotlight. The June forecasts predicted an average inflation rate of 0.3% year-over-year this year, currently requiring a rather steep increase in inflation towards 1.1% at the end of the year. We think this is achievable, but we doubt the ECB is willing to be as bold, and it is reasonable to assume this year's forecast will be revised down a notch.

3 Sept. 2015 Trade Deficit Likely Dropped in July, but Q3 Picture Still Unclear (My Publications)

The July trade deficit likely fell significantly further than the consensus forecast for a dip to $42.2B from $43.8B in June, despite the sharp drop in the ISM manufacturing export orders index. Our optimism is not just wishful thinking on our p art; our forecast is based on the BEA's new advance trade report. These data passed unnoticed in the markets and the media. The July report, released August 28, wasn't even listed on Bloomberg's U.S. calendar, which does manage to find space for such useless indicators as the Challenger job cut survey and Kansas City Fed manufacturing index. Baffling.

30 August 2017 Six Reasons why a Soft Brexit now is more Likely than Ever (My Publications)

Six developments over the summer have increased the likelihood that the government will make concessions required to preserve unfettered access to the single market after formally leaving the EU in March 2019.

30 August 2017 The Eurozone's Cyclical Recovery is Stable, Not Accelerating (My Publications)

While we were enjoying a rare sunny bank holiday in the U.K., data showed that Eurozone money supply growth slowed at the start of Q3. Broad money growth--M3--fell to a 10-month low of 4.5% year-over- year in July, from 5.0% in August.

30 August 2017 Argentina's Recovery is Gaining Traction but Inflation is Still a Risk (My Publications)

Recently data from Argentina continue to signal a firming cyclical recovery. According to INDEC's EMAE economic activity index, a monthly proxy for GDP, the economy grew 4.0% year-over-year in June, up from an already-solid 3.4% in May.

30 August 2017 ADP Looks set to Report Another Solid Gain in Payrolls (My Publications)

We're expecting a hefty increase in private payrolls in today's August ADP employment report. ADP's number is generated by a model which incorporates macroeconomic statistics and lagged official payroll data, as well as information collected from firms which use ADP's payroll processing services.

30 Apr. 2015 FOMC acknowledges slowdown in Q1, but core view unchanged (My Publications)

The FOMC delivered no big surprises yesterday, but seemed keen to make it clear that policymakers are sticking to their core views, despite the slowdown in growth in the first quarter. Unlike the March statement, yesterday's note pointed out that the slowdown came in the winter months, though it did not directly blame the weather for the sluggishness in growth.

30 Apr. 2015 Real M1 Growth Points to Strengthening Cyclical Recovery (My Publications)

Survey and money supply data remain consistent with an improving Eurozone economy. Yesterday's EC sentiment index fell to 103.7 in April, from 103.9 in March, due to weakness in France and Germany, but it is consistent with GDP growth of about 0.4% quarter-on-quarter in Q2.

3 Dec. 2015 Great Expectations of the ECB, But Mr. Draghi Will Not Disappoint (My Publications)

Even Charles Dickens could not have written a more dramatic prologue to today's ECB meeting. Elevated expectations ahead of major policy events always leave room for major disappointment, but we think the central bank will deliver. Advance data yesterday indicated inflation was unchanged at 0.1% year-over-year in November, below the consensus 0.2%, and providing all the ammunition the doves need to push ahead. We expect the central bank to cut the deposit rate by 20bp to -0.4%, to increase the pace of bond purchases by €10B to €70B a month, and to extend QE to March 2017.

3 Dec. 2014 Decent Consumption, Dreadful Investment in Eurozone GDP (My Publications)

Retail sales data later today will give us the first hard data from the fourth quarter, and the story should be altogether more positive than the still downbeat message from the manufacturing sector.

29 August 2017 The next few Months will Test Temer's Capital in Congress (My Publications)

Brazil's economic outlook is gradually improving following a challenging Q2, which was hit by political risk, putting business and consumer confidence under pressure.

29 Feb. 2016 Core PCE Inflation Will Breach the Target This Year, Two Years Early (My Publications)

When we argue that the Fed will have to respond to accelerating wages and core prices by raising rates faster than markets expect, a frequent retort is that the Fed has signalled a greater tolerance than in the past for inflation overshoots.

29 Feb. 2016 Mexican Inflation Edging Higher - Don't Worry, for Now (My Publications)

Mexico's inflation has started to edge higher due mainly to an unfavorable base effect and pressures on food prices. The bi-weekly headline CPI for the first half of February edged up to 2.9% year-over-year and up from 2.7% in January and the record low of 2.3% in December.

29 August 2017 No Hints on the Future of QE from Mr. Draghi in Jackson Hole (My Publications)

Mr. Draghi snubbed investors looking for hints on policy and the euro in his Jackson Hole address--see here--on Friday.

29 August 2017 Is it Time to Turn Positive on the Outlook for Net Foreign Trade? (My Publications)

Britain still has nothing to show for sterling's depreciation, even though nearly two years have passed since markets started to price-in Brexit risk, driving the currency lower.

29 Apr. 2016 Weak Q1 Growth Won't Persist - Better Data Coming, Soon (My Publications)

The astonishing 86% annualized plunge in capital spending in mining structures--mostly oil wells--alone subtracted 0.6 percentage points from headline GDP growth in the first quarter. The collapse was bigger than we expected, based on the falling rig count, but the key point is that it will not be repeated in the second quarter.

29 August 2017 Hurricane Harvey will Depress September Output and Payrolls (My Publications)

The terrible scenes from Texas will play out in the economic data over the next few weeks.

29 Feb. 2016 The Eurozone is Back in Deflation, but the Relapse is Temporary (My Publications)

Advance inflation data on Friday added to the gloom on the Eurozone economy. Reports from Germany, France, and Spain all surprised to the downside, indicating the euro area as a whole slipped back into deflation in February. Inflation in Germany dipped to 0.0% year-over-year in February, from 0.5% in January, and France slid back into deflation as the CPI index fell 0.2%, down from a 0.2 increase last month.

29 Feb. 2016 The Weaker Pound has not Transformed the Export Outlook (My Publications)

In theory, any hit to sentiment and business investment as the E.U. referendum nears could be offset by a better foreign trade performance, due to the Brexit-related depreciation of sterling. But not every cloud has a silver lining.

29 Jan. 2016 Little to Console the Optimists in Fourth Quarter GDP (My Publications)

The preliminary estimate of a 0.5% quarter-on-quarter rise in GDP in Q4 slightly exceeded our expectation and the third quarter's growth rate, both 0.4%. Nonetheless, there was little to console the optimists in the figures. The recovery remains unbalanced, with industrial production and construction output falling by 0.2% and 0.1% respectively, while services output rose 0.7% quarter-on-quarter.

29 Jan. 2016 Will Inventories and Government Hold Q4 GDP Close to Zero? (My Publications)

We expect to learn today that the economy barely grew at all in the fourth quarter. At least, that's what we think the first estimate of growth, due today, will show. This number will then be revised twice over the next couple of months, then again when revisions for the past three years are released in July. Thereafter, the numbers are subject to further annual revisions indefinitely.

29 July. 2015 Is EM Weakness Threatening Investment Recovery in the EZ? (My Publications)

Volatility in commodities and emerging markets has intensified since the beginning of July, with the stock market drama in China taking centre stage. The bubble in Chinese equities inflated without much ado elsewhere, and can probably deflate in isolation too. But the accelerating economic slowdown in EM is becoming an issue for policy makers in the Eurozone.

29 Jan. 2016 EZ Core Inflation is Rising, but Weak Oil Prices are Still a Wildcard (My Publications)

German data yesterday indicate that inflation pressures have, so far, been resilient in the face of the recent collapse in oil prices. Inflation rose to 0.5% year-over-year in January from 0.3% in December, partly due to base effects pushing up the year-over-year rate in energy prices, but core inflation rose too. The detailed state data indicate that almost all key components of the core index contributed positively, lead by leisure and recreation and healthcare.

29 Jan. 2016 Data and Copom Minutes Point to no Change in Brazilian Rates (My Publications)

Another month, another bleak Brazilian labor market report. The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate increased marginally to 8.3% in December, up from 8.2% in November, much worse than the 5.1% recorded in December 2014.

29 Jan. 2015 Fed Upgrades its Growth View - Markets Look Elsewhere (My Publications)

The Fed left in place the three key elements of its statement yesterday, repeating that the extent of labor market under-utilization is "diminishing"; that the inflation drop as a result of falling oil prices will be "transitory" and that the Fed can be "patient" before starting to raise rates.

29 Jan. 2015 Inflation data will be kind to bondholders, for now (My Publications)

Last week's QE announcement has made Eurozone inflation prints less important for investors, but the market will still be watching for signs of a turning point in benchmark bond yields. The data are unlikely to challenge bond holders in the short run, however, as the Eurozone probably slipped deeper into deflation in January.

29 Apr. 2016 German Labour Market are Solid, but Likely Will Disappoint Soon (My Publications)

German labour market data continue to break records on a monthly basis. The unemployment rate was unchanged at 6.2% in A pril, with jobless claims falling 16,000, following a revised 2,000 fall in March. March employment rose 1.2% year-over-year, down slightly from 1.3% in February, but the total number of people in jobs rose to a new high of 43.4 million.

29 Apr. 2016 Brazil's Central Bank Lays The Groundwork for a Rate Cut in Q3 (My Publications)

Brazil's macroeconomic scenario is becoming easier to navigate for the central bank. Both actual inflation and expectations are slowing rapidly, as shown in our first chart. And since the March BCB monetary policy meeting, the BRL has appreciated about 10% against the USD, while commodity prices and EM sentiment have also improved markedly.

28 October. 2016 Markets Are Complacent About the Chances of Another Rate Cut (My Publications)

The preliminary estimate of Q3 GDP, showing quarter-on-quarter growth slowing only to 0.5% from 0.7% in Q2, has kiboshed the chance that the MPC cuts Bank Rate next Thursday.

28 Sept. 2015 Colombia Unexpectedly Raises Rates, Amid Inflation Pressures (My Publications)

BanRep surprised everyone late Friday, moving ahead of the curve by starting a tightening cycle that had been expected to begin later in the year or in Q1. But the seven-board member succumbed in the face of persistent inflationary pressures, and voted unanimously to hike the main interest rate by 25bp to 4.75%, the first move since April 2014.

28 Sept. 2015 Don't Believe Case-Shiller Home Price Data - Prices are Rising (My Publications)

Former Treasury Secretary and thwarted would-be Fed Chair Larry Summers has been arguing for some time that the Fed should not raise rates "...until it sees the whites of inflation's eyes". As part of his campaign to persuade actual Fed Chair Yellen of the error of her intended ways, he argued at the World Economic Forum in September that the strong dollar has played no role in depressing inflation. Never one to miss an opportunity to diss the competition, he wrote that Stanley Fischer's view that the dollar has indeed restrained inflation is "substantially weakened" by the hard evidence. Dr. Summers' view is that inflation is being held down by other, longer-lasting factors, principally the slack in the lab or market, rather than the "transitory" influences favored by the Fed.

28 October. 2016 Upside Risk for Third Quarter Growth,Watch Inventories (My Publications)

Two entirely separate factors point to significant upside risk to the first estimate of third quarter GDP growth, due today. First, we think it likely that farm inventories will not fall far enough to offset the unprecedented surge in exports of soybeans, which will add some 0.9 percentage points to headline GDP growth.

28 Oct. 2015 Q3 Slowdown Marks the Start of a Sustained Softening (My Publications)

Markets responded to yesterday's disappointing GDP figures by pushing back expectations for the first rise in official interest rates even further into 2017. The first rate hike is now expected--by the overnight index swap market--in April 2017, two months later than anticipated before the GDP release. The figures certainly look weak--particularly when you scratch below the surface--and we expect growth to slow further over the coming quarters. But we don't agree they imply an even longer period of inaction on the Monetary Policy Committee.

28 Oct. 2015 Budget Deal Means Fiscal Policy Will Ease Slightly Next Year (My Publications)

The two-year budget deal agreed between the administration and the Republican leadership in Congress will avert a federal debt default and appears to constitute a modest near-term easing of fiscal policy. The debt ceiling will not be raised, but the law imposing the limit will be suspended through March 2017, leaving the Treasury free to borrow as much as necessary to cover the deficit. As a result, the presidential election next year will not be fought against a backdrop of fiscal crisis.

28 Oct. 2015 Domestic Data Point to Robust Third Quarter Growth in Mexico (My Publications)

The Mexican economy is recovering gradually, despite many external headwinds. This week, the IGAE economic activity index--a monthly proxy for GDP--rose a solid 2.6% year-over-year in August, up from 2.0% in July. In the first half the economy grew on average 2.4%. The report showed increases in all three sectors, most notably agriculture, up 8.2% year-over-year, followed by services, 3.3%, and industrial activities, with a 1.0% gain.

28 Sept. 2015 ECB is on Alert, but No Warning, So Far, From the Economy (My Publications)

Mr. Draghi used his introductory statement at the ECON--EU Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee-- hearing last week to assure investors that the central bank is vigilant to downside risks. The president noted the governing council "would not hesitate to act" if it deems growth and inflation to be undershooting expectations. Market volatility has increased the ECB's worries, but economic data continue to tell a story of a firm business cycle upturn.

28 September 2016 No Scope For Complacency on Inflation as Import Prices Rise (My Publications)

Our forecast that CPI inflation will shoot up to about 3% in the second half of 2017, from 0.6% last month, assumes that pass-through from the exchange rate to consumer goods prices will be as swift and complete as in the past. Our first chart shows that this relationship has held firm recently, with core goods prices falling at the rate implied by sterling's appreciation in 2014 and 2015.

29 Apr. 2015 Growth in the first quarter, but not much? (My Publications)

The first estimate of Q1 growth will show that the economy struggled in the face of the severe winter and, to a lesser extent, the rollover in capital spending in the oil sector. But the weather hit appears to have been much smaller than last year, when the economy shrank at a 2.1% rate in the first quarter; this time, we think the economy expanded at an annualized rate of 1.1%.

29 Apr. 2015 Upbeat French consumers, but unemployment is a dark spot (My Publications)

Household sentiment in France continues to improve, consistent with tailwinds from low energy prices and accommodative monetary policy. INSEE's measure of consumer confidence rose to 94 in April, up from 93 in March, the highest since November 2010.

28 September. 2016 Narrow Money in the EZ points to Slower GDP Growth Next Year (My Publications)

Momentum in EZ money supply slipped marginally in September. Headline M3 growth slowed to 5.0%, from 5.1%, mainly due to a slowdown in narrow money. Overnight deposit growth slowed to 9.4%, from 9.9% in August, offsetting a slight rise in growth of currency in circulation.

28 September. 2016 Expect Weak Headline Durable Orders (My Publications)

A third outright decline in the past four months seems a decent bet for today's August durable goods orders, thanks to the malign influence of the downward trend in orders for civilian aircraft. The global airline cycle is maturing, and orders for both Boeing and Airbus aircraft have been slowing for some time.

28 September 2016 Strong EZ Money Supply Data, but Lending Details Mixed (My Publications)

Yesterday's money supply data in the Eurozone were solid across the board. Growth in headline M3 rose to 5.1% year-over-year in August, up from a 4.9% increase in July. A rebound in narrow money growth was the key driver of the gain, with seasonally- and calendar-adjusted M1 rising 8.9% year-over-year, up from July's 8.4%.

28 September. 2016 The BCB's Report Takes a Big Step Towards Easier Money (My Publications)

The publication yesterday of the BCB's second quarterly inflation report under the new president, Ilan Golfajn, revealed that inflation is expected to hit the official target next year, for the first time since 2009. The inflation forecast for 2017 was lowered from 4.7% to 4.4%, just below the central bank's 4.5% target.

29 July. 2016 Brace for Downside Surprise in Today's Advance Q2 EZ GDP Data (My Publications)

Today's Eurozone data schedule is very hectic, but attention likely will focus on advance Q2 GDP data. France, Austria and Spain will report advance data separately ahead of the EZ aggregate estimate, which is released 11.00 CET. This report will include a confidential number from Germany.

29 July. 2016 Will Household Saving Rise and Tip the Economy into Recession? (My Publications)

Households' saving decisions will play a key role in determining whether the economy slips into recession over the next year. Indeed, all of the last three recessions coincided with sharp rises in the household saving rate, as our first chart shows. Will households save more in response to greater economic uncertainty?

29 Sept. 2015 Don't Believe Case-Shiller Home Price Data - Prices are Rising (My Publications)

Today's Case-Shiller report on existing home prices will likely show that August prices were little changed, month-to-month, for the fourth straight month. The slowdown in the pace of price gains since the first quarter, when price gains averaged 1.0% per month, has been startling. In all probability, though, the apparent stalling is a reflection of the quality of the data rather than the underlying reality in the housing market.

29 September 2016 Consumers' Spending Growth in Germany is Slowing, Modestly (My Publications)

Survey data in the Eurozone were mixed yesterday. In Germany, the advance GfK consumer sentiment index slipped to 10.0 in October, from 10.2 in September, marginally below consensus forecasts. The details, reported for September, also were soft.

29 September 2016 What to Look Out for During Friday's Data Deluge (My Publications)

The estimate of services output for the first month of the current quarter usually gets lost among the deluge of national accounts and balance of payments data released for the previous quarter.

29 Sept. 2015 Deflation Focus is Overwhelming, But Inflation will Pick Up in Q4 (My Publications)

Eurozone September CPI data this week will show that inflation pressures remain weak, appearing to support the ECB's focus on downside risks. We think Eurozone inflation--data released Wednesday-- rose slightly to 0.2% year-over-year in September from 0.1% in August, as core inflation edged higher, offsetting weak energy prices. Looking ahead, structural inflation pressures will keep inflation well below the central bank's 2% target for a considerable period.

29 Oct. 2015 EZ Consumers Remain Upbeat, but Downside Risks in Germany (My Publications)

Consumer sentiment data yesterday from the major economies were mixed, signalling that support to Eurozone GDP growth from surging German household consumption is waning. The key "business outlook" index--which correlates best with spending--plunged to a 30-month low in October, while the advance GfK sentiment index dipped to 9.4 in November from 9.6 in October. We see little signs in retail sales data of slowing momentum, and also think consumers' spending rebounded in Q3. But our first chart shows that the fall in the GfK index implies clear downside risks in coming quarters.

29 May. 2015 Stable GDP Growth and Moderately Higher Inflation in Q2 (My Publications)

Money supply data today should provide further confirmation of a moderate upturn in the Eurozone credit cycle. We think broad money growth, M3, accelerated to 5.0% year-over-year in April, up from 4.6% in March.

29 Oct. 2015 All Fed Eyes Now on the October, November Employment Reports (My Publications)

The Fed yesterday toned down its warnings on the potential impact on the U.S. of "global economic and financial developments", and upgraded its view on the domestic economy, pointing out that consumption and fixed investment "have been increasing at solid rates in recent months". In September, they were merely growing "moderately". Policymakers are still "monitoring" global and market developments, but the urgency and fear of September has gone. The statement acknowledged the slower payroll gains of recent months--without offering an explanation--but pointed out, as usual, that "underutilization of labor resources has diminished since early this year" and that it will be appropriate to begin raising rates "some further improvement in the labor market".

29 September. 2016 Rocketing Soybean Exports Set to Hold Down August Trade Deficit (My Publications)

Today is all about beans. Specifically, soybeans, and more specifically, just how many of them were exported in August. This really matters, because if soybean exports in August and September remained close to their hugely elevated July level, the surge in exports relative to the second quarter will contribute about one percentage point to headline GDP growth.

3 April 2017 Brazil's Labour Market is Still Poor, but Likely Will Stabilize Soon (My Publications)

Economic data released on Friday underscored our view that bolder rate cuts in Brazil are looming. The BCB's latest BCB's inflation report, released on Thursday, showed that policymakers now see conditions in place to increase the pace of easing "moderately" .

3 August 2017 China's Reform Scorecard Part 3: Building Government Debt Markets (My Publications)

China will have to issue a lot of government debt in the next few years. The government will need to continue migrating to its balance sheet, all the debt that should have been registered there in the first place. This will mean a rapid expansion of liabilities, but if handled correctly, the government will also gain valuable assets in the process.

3 August. 2016 Fundamentals Don't Matter For The EZ's Mighty Corporate Bonds (My Publications)

Debt issuance by Eurozone non-financial firms is soaring, consistent with the ECB's hope that adding private debt to QE would boost supply. Our first chart shows that the three-month sum of net debt sold in the euro area jumped to a new record of €60.3B in May. A short-term decline in issuance is a good bet after the initial euphoria in firms' treasury departments.

3 August. 2016 The MPC Won't Be Afraid to Disappoint Markets' Stimulus Hopes (My Publications)

Many investors are betting that the MPC will announce a bold package of easing measures on Thursday. For a start, overnight index swap markets are pricing-in a 98% probability that the MPC will cut Bank Rate to 0.25%, and a 30% chance that interest rates will fall to, or below, zero by the end of the year.

3 August 2017 Will the MPC Call Time on the Term Funding Scheme? (My Publications)

We see only a small risk today of the MPC raising interest rates or sending a strong signal that a hike is imminent, for the reasons we set out in our preview of the meeting. The MPC, however, also must decide today whether to wind up the Term Funding Scheme-- TFS--launched a year ago as part of its post-Brexit stimulus measures.

3 April 2017 Q4 Consumers' Spending Spree Will End Abruptly This Year (My Publications)

The national accounts for the fourth quarter showed that the economy relied on households slashing their saving rate to a record low in order to spend more. Now, growth in consumer spending will have to fall back in line with real incomes, which will increasingly be impaired by rising inflation.

3 April 2017 Expect Strength in Both the ISM and Construction Data Today (My Publications)

We'd be very surprised to see a material weakening in today's March ISM manufacturing survey. The regional reports released in recent weeks point to another reading in the high 50s, with a further advance from February's 57.7 a real possibility.

3 April 2017 Eurozone Consumers Likely had a Slow Start to 2017 (My Publications)

We fear that private spending in the EZ slowed in Q1, despite rocketing survey data. This fits our view that household consumption will slow in 2017 after sustained above-trend growth in the beginning of this business cycle.

29 May. 2015 Foreign Trade Chaos Hurt Q1 GDP Growth - Expect Hefty Q2 Unwind (My Publications)

The biggest single driver of the downward revision to first quarter GDP growth, due this morning, will be the foreign trade component. Headline GDP growth likely will be pushed down by a full percentage point, to -0.8% from +0.2%, with trade accounting for about 0.7 percentage points of the revision.

29 May. 2015 Brazil's External Accounts are Improving Amid Weak Economy (My Publications)

Brazil's current account deficit rose to USD6.9B in April, from USD5.8B in March. The deficit totaled USD100.2B, or 4.5% of GDP on a 12-month rolling basis, marginally better than 4.6% in March; the underlying trend is flat. The services and income accounts improved slightly compared to April last year.

29 June. 2015 Greece to Dominate Markets - Dollar, Treasuries to Benefit (My Publications)

The Eurozone is on the brink of its first exit this week after the ECB refused to offer incremental emergency liquidity to Greek banks, forcing the start of bank holiday through July 7--two days after next weekend's referendum--and beginning today. We have no doubt that if the banks were to open, they would soon be bust; bank runs have a habit of accelerating beyond the point of no return very quickly.

29 June. 2015 Greek Exit Looms, but Don't Ignore Bullish Leading Indicators (My Publications)

Negotiations between Greece and its creditors collapsed over the weekend, greatly increasing the risk of a Grexit. The decision by Syriza to call a referendum on the bailout proposal next weekend, initially advocating rejection, forced the Eurogroup to abandon negotiations and focus on "damage control." Hope of a final retreat from the brink rests with the Greek parliament deciding not to hold the referendum, and accepting the proposal presented on Friday.

29 June. 2015 Mexican Recovery is Stuttering, but Better Days Ahead? (My Publications)

Mexico's economy hit a sticky patch in the first quarter, with confidence slipping, employment growth slowing and the downward trend in unemployment stalling. Indeed, the headline unemployment rate rose to 4.5% in May from 4.3% in April. The seasonally adjusted rate, though, was little changed at 4.4%, with a stable participation rate.

29 June 2017 The EZ Economy is in Great Shape, but Probably not Getting Better (My Publications)

Money supply dynamics in the Eurozone were broadly stable last month. M3 rose 5.0% year-over-year in May, accelerating slightly from a 4.9% increase in April, in line with the trend since the middle of 2015.

29 June 2017 GDP Seasonal Adjustment Problems Persist, a Fix is Promised in July (My Publications)

The third estimate of first quarter GDP growth, due today, will not be the final word on the subject. Indeed, there never will be a final word, because the numbers are revised indefinitely into the future.

29 June 2017 A Single Rate Hike Would Risk a Harmful Rise in Rate Expectations (My Publications)

The MPC's hawks are framing the interest rate increase they want as a "withdrawal of part of the stimulus that the Committee had injected in August last year", arguing that monetary policy still would be "very supportive" if rates rose to 0.5%, from 0.25%.

29 June 2017 China's Debt is not too High, but it Grew too Fast - Reckoning will Come (My Publications)

China's total debt stock is high for a country at its stage of development, relative to GDP, but it is sustainable for country with excess savings. China was never going to be a typical EM, where external debtors can trigger a crisis by demanding payment.

29 June. 2016 French Households are in a Good Mood, Despite Dip in Sentiment (My Publications)

French consumer sentiment dipped slightly in June, but we see no major hit from ongoing labour market disputes. The headline index slipped to 97 in June, from 98 in May; this is a decent reading given the fourpoint jump last month. The headline was constrained by a big fall in consumers' "major purchasing intentions," but this partly was mean-reversion following a surge last month.

29 June. 2016 New BCB Boss Takes a Hawkish Tone, Rates on Hold in Q3 (My Publications)

The publication yesterday of the first BCB quarterly inflation report under the new president, Ilan Golfajn, revealed his initial views on inflation, the currency, and monetary policy. Overall, Mr. Golfajn has taken a hawkish approach. We think Brazil's first rate cut will come no earlier than Q4, likely at the final meeting of the year, providing the government continues the fiscal consolidation process and inflation keeps falling.

29 March 2017 Banxico to Hike Tomorrow Despite the MXN's Rebound this Year (My Publications)

LatAm currencies have risen against the USD so far this year, easing the upward pressure on imported good prices and allowing most central banks to cut interest rates. The first direct effects of stronger currencies should be felt by firms which import high-turnover intermediate or final goods.

29 March 2017 Triggering Article 50 Won't End the "Phoney War" Immediately (My Publications)

The Prime Minister will invoke Article 50 today, marking the end of the beginning of the U.K.'s departure from the EU. The move likely will not move markets, as it has been all but certain since MPs backed the Government's European Union Bill on February 1.

29 March 2017 The Alternative Interpretation of Political Uncertainty in the EZ (My Publications)

The presumption in markets is that the French presidential election is the last hurdle to be overcome in the EZ economy. As long as Marine Le Pen is kept out of l'Élysée, animal spirits will be released in the economy and financial markets. We concede that a Le Pen victory would result in chaos, at least in the short run. Bond spreads would widen, equities would crash and the euro would plummet. But we also suspect that such volatility would be short-lived, similar to the convulsions after Brexit.

29 March 2017 Consumers are Happy, but Spending Will Lag Sentiment (My Publications)

Yesterday's data don't significantly change our view that first quarter GDP growth will be reported at only about 1%, but the foreign trade and consumer confidence numbers support our contention that the underlying trend in growth is rather stronger than that.

29 June. 2016 Second Quarter GDP Growth Could Easily Breach 3% (My Publications)

The Atlanta Fed's GDP Now estimate for second quarter GDP growth will be revised today, in light of the data released over the past few days. We aren't expecting a big change from the June 24 estimate, 2.6%, because most of the recent data don't capture the most volatile components of growth, including inventories and government spending. The key driver of quarterly swings in the government component is state and local construction, but at this point we have data only for April; those numbers were weak.

29 June. 2016 Sterling Likely to be Higher at Year-End, as the Political Fog Lifts (My Publications)

Sterling found its feet yesterday, rising to $1.33 from Monday's 31-year low of 1.32, but it would be the height of folly to rule out a further short-term decline. By the end of this year, however, we think that sterling likely will have appreciated to around $1.38.

30 June. 2015 Slowing Aircraft Orders Holding Back Chicago PMI - No Hit to ISM (My Publications)

The seasonal adjustment problems which tend to drive up the national ISM manufacturing survey in late spring and summer are more or less absent from the Chicago PMI, which will be released today. As far as we can tell, the biggest short-term influence on the Chicago number is variations in the order flow for Boeing aircraft; the company moved its headquarters to the city from Seattle in 2001.

30 June. 2016 Commodities are Helping LatAm's Recovery - Brexit not a Deal-Breaker (My Publications)

The downturn in LatAm is finally bottoming out, but the economy of the region as a whole will not return to positive year-over-year economic growth until next year. The domestic side of the region's economy is improving, at the margin, thanks mainly to the improving inflation picture, and relatively healthy labor markets.

4 Mar. 2015 Mean Reversion Makes ADP Look Like a Leading Indicator - It's Not (My Publications)

Mean-reversion is a wonderful thing; it's what gives the ADP employment report the wholly unjustified appearance of being a useful leading indicator of payroll growth. Over time, the best single forecast of payroll gains or losses in any particular month is whatever happened last month.

4 May 2017 Fed on Hold Today After Mixed Data, but a June Hike Still Looks Likely (My Publications)

The Fed surprised no-one yesterday, leaving rates on hold, saying nothing new about the balance sheet, and making no substantive changes to its view on the economy. The statement was tweaked slightly, making it clear that policymakers are skeptical of the reported slowdown in GDP growth to just 0.7% in Q1: "The Committee views the slowing in growth during the first quarter as likely to be transitory".

4 May 2017 How to Interpret the Results from Today's Local Elections (My Publications)

Today's local elections are more important than usual, because they will enable investors to assess if the Conservatives really are on track for a landslide victory in the general election, as suggested by the opinion polls and priced-in by the forex market.

4 Mar. 2015 Brazil's Central Bank Set to Respond As Inflation Fails to Slow (My Publications)

Brazil is now paying the price of President Rousseff's first term, which was characterized by unaffordable expansionary policies. As a result, inflation is now trending higher, forcing the BCB to tighten at a more aggressive pace than initially intended--or expected by investors--depressing business and investment confidence.

4 June. 2015 Trade will add to Q2 growth, but normalization still some way off (My Publications)

The April foreign trade numbers strongly support our view that foreign trade will make a hefty positive contribution to second quarter GDP growth, after subtracting a massive 1.9 percentage points in the first. The headline April deficit fell further than we expected, thanks in part to an unsustainable jump in aircraft exports and a decline in the oil deficit, but the big story was the 4.2% plunge in non- oil imports.

4 July. 2016 Industrial Output in Brazil has Hit Bottom, but No Quick Recovery (My Publications)

Friday's Brazilian industrial production data were relatively positive. Output was unchanged month-to-month in May, and April's marginal gain was revised slightly higher. The flat monthly reading pushed year-over-year growth in output up marginally to -8.9% from -9.1%. May production rose month-to-month in two of the four major categories.

4 June. 2015 Inflation forecasts up, but Doves remain in charge at the ECB (My Publications)

Mr. Draghi struck a dovish tone yesterday, despite the new ECB staff projections upgrading the inflation forecast this year to an average of 0.3%, up from the zero predicted in March. The president reiterated that the central bank's expectation of a gradual improvement in inflation and real GDP growth is conditional on the full implementation of QE.

4 May 2017 Strong Q1 GDP Data in the EZ, but the Annualised Trend is not 2% (My Publications)

The Eurozone enjoyed a strong start to 2017. Yesterday's advance data showed that real GDP rose 0.5% quarter-on-quarter in Q1, a similar pace to Q4, which was revised up by 0.1 percentage points. The year-over-year rate dipped to 1.7%, from an upwardly revised 1.8% in Q4.

4 May. 2016 Eurozone Manufacturing Firms' Selling Prices Continue to Fall (My Publications)

Eurozone manufacturing selling prices remain under pressure from deflationary headwinds. The PPI index, ex-construction, in the euro area fell 4.2% year-over-year in March, matching February's drop. Weakness in oil prices continues to drive the headline.

4 Nov. 2015 Today's PMIs Will Send a Signal o f a Continuing Cyclical Recovery (My Publications)

Final October PMI data today will confirm the Eurozone's recovery remains on track. We think the composite PMI rose to 54.0 from 53.6 in September, in line with the consensus and initial estimate. Data on Monday showed that manufacturing performed better than expected in October, and the composite index likely will enjoy a further boost from solid services. The PMIs currently point to a trend in GDP growth of 0.4%-to-0.5% quarter-on-quarter, the strongest performance since the last recession.

4 Nov. 2015 Why Has the Supply of Homes For Sale Fallen so Much? (My Publications)

The current momentum in house prices partly reflects a dearth of homes offered for sale by existing homeowners. This scarcity reflects a series of constraints, which we think will ease only gradually. Further punchy gains in house prices therefore look sustainable and we expect average prices to rise by about 8% next year.

4 November. 2016 October Payrolls Likely Were Good Enough (My Publications)

For analysts with a broadly positive view of the U.S. economy, it is tempting to argue that the slowdown in payroll growth this year reflects supply constraints, as the pool of qualified labor dries up.

4 Nov. 2015 Mexico's Economy Solid in Q3 - Soft Manufacturing No Threat Yet (My Publications)

The Mexican economy had a decent start to the second half of the year, thanks to resilient domestic demand, amid signs of recovery in industrial activity. GDP rose 0.6% quarter-on-quarter in Q3, a bit faster than in Q2, lifting the year-over-year rate to 2.4% from 2.2% in Q2. This is the first time the statistics office, INEGI, published an advance reading on GDP, reducing the time between the end of the quarter to the report date to 30 days from 52.

4 Nov. 2015 ADP Tells Us Payrolls Mean- Revert, but That's Not News (My Publications)

The underlying trend in payroll growth ought to be running at 250K-plus, based on an array of indicators of the pace of both hiring and firing. The past few months' numbers have fallen far short of this pace, though, for reasons which are not yet clear. We are inclined to blame a shortage of suitably qualified staff, not least because that appears to be the message from the NFIB survey, which shows that the proportion of small businesses with unfilled positions is now close to the highs seen in previous cycles. If we're right, payroll growth won't return to the 254K average recorded in 2014 until the next cyclical upturn, but quite what to expect instead is anyone's guess.

4 May. 2016 The Recent Recovery of LatAm's Currencies Poses No Threat, Yet (My Publications)

The recovery of some key commodity prices, policy action in China, and stronger expectations that the U.S. Fed will start hiking rates later during the year, have helped reduce volatility in LatAm financial markets. Oil prices have rise by around 20% year-to-date, iron ore prices are up about 60% and copper has risen by 7%.

4 May. 2016 Will the March Easter Depress the April ADP Employment Number? (My Publications)

The official payroll numbers seem not to be consistently affected by seasonal adjustment problems when Easter falls in March, probably because the earliest possible date for the holiday, the 23rd, comes long after the payroll data are captured. The BLS data cover the week of the 12th.

4 July. 2016 A Look into the Abyss - Will the EZ and the EU Disintegrate? (My Publications)

For some economists and political analysts the surprising result of the U.K.'s EU referendum symbolises one of the biggest threats to the structure of the post-war social-liberal market economy. To this school of thought, the vote proved that the discontent of a pressured and disenfranchised working/middle class is rising, threatening to topple economies and political institutions.

4 July 2017 Mr Abe Trounced in Tokyo Elections just as Recovery Gains Traction (My Publications)

The Tankan survey powered ahead in Q2, pulling away from Q1 and mostly beating consensus. This confirms our impression of the strength of the recovery ,just as Prime Minister Abe's Liberal Democratic Party is trounced at the polls in Tokyo. The drubbing is understandable as the main benefits of Abenomics have gone to the business sector, at the expense of the household sector.

4 Dec. 2015 How Reliable is the Composite PMI as an Indicator of GDP Growth? (My Publications)

A further rise in the business activity index of the November Markit/CIPS report on services offset declines in the manufacturing and construction surveys' key balances. The composite PMI--a weighted average of three survey's activity indices -- therefore rose, to a level consistent with quarter-on-quarter GDP growth strengthening to 0.6% in the fourth quarter, from 0.5% in Q3. Nonetheless, we do not think this is a convincing signal that the economic recovery is regaining strength.

4 Dec. 2015 November Labor Data Will Support Yellen's Case for Hiking (My Publications)

We're expecting to see November payrolls up by about 200K this morning, but our forecast takes into account the likelihood that the initial reading will be revised up. In the five years through 2014, the first estimate of November payrolls was revised up by an average of 73K by the time o f the third estimate. Our forecast for today, therefore, is consistent with our view that the underlying trend in payrolls is 250K-plus. That's the message of the very low level of jobless claims, and the strength of all surveys of hiring, with the exception of the depressed ISM manufacturing employment index. Manufacturing accounts for only 9% of payrolls, though, so this just doesn't matter.

4 Feb. 2015 ADP Should Beat Consensus, but it's not a Reliable Indicator (My Publications)

The least-bad way to forecast the ADP employment number is to look at the official private payroll number for the previous month. ADP's methodology generates employment numbers from a model incorporating lagged data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics as well as information from companies which use ADP for payroll processing.

4 Dec. 2015 Brazil's Economic Mess Worsens Amid Deepening Political Crises (My Publications)

Industrial production data yesterday confirmed downside risks to Q4's GDP data in Brazil. Output fell 0.7% month-to-month in October, the fifth consecutive decline, pushing the year-over-year rate down to -11.2%, from -10.9% in September. This was the biggest drop since April 2009, when output collapsed by 14.2% during the global financial crisis. The October details were even worse than the headline, as all three broad-measures fell sharply.

4 Dec. 2015 A Bad Day for ECB Doves - New Policies Fall Short of Expectations (My Publications)

On all accounts, the ECB announced a significant addition to its stimulus program yesterday. The central bank cut the deposit rate by 0.1%, to -0.3%, and extended the duration of QE until March 2017. The ECB also increased the scope of eligible assets to include regional and local government debt; decided to re-invest principal bond payments; and affirmed its commitment to long-term refinancing operations in the financial sector for as long as necessary. The measures were not agreed upon unanimously, but the majority was, according to Mr. Draghi, "very large".

4 August. 2016 Will the ECB Take The Markets' Hint on Negative Interest Rates? (My Publications)

Markets initially applauded the ECB for its bold actions, but the tune has changed recently. Negative interest rates, in particular, have been vilified for their margin destroying effect in the banking sector. Our first chart shows that the relative performance of financials in the EZ equity market has dwindled steadily in line with the plunge in yields.

4 Dec. 2014 - November Data Might Hide Underlying Labor Market Strength (My Publications)

The ADP report yesterday has not changed our view that tomorrow's payroll number will be about 180K, well below our estimate of the underlying trend, which is about 250K. ADP's numbers are heavily influenced by the BLS data for the prior month, and tell us little or nothing about the next official report.

4 Feb. 2015 Divergent Manufacturing Stories in LatAm's Biggest Economies (My Publications)

The manufacturing indexes for January showed a small improvement for the biggest economies in LatAm: Brazil and Mexico. In Brazil, the PMI manufacturing index increased marginally to 50.7 in December from 50.2 in November, thanks to stronger output and new orders components, which rose together for the first time in ten months.

4 Feb. 2015 The Eurozone consumer is in fine shape (My Publications)

Retail sales data later today will provide further support for the upbeat consumer story in the Eurozone. We expect a third monthly gain in a row, taking retail sales to a 0.8% expansion quarter-on-quarter in Q4, the fastest since the end of 2006. We are seeing clear signs of improvement in the Eurozone economy, and the data are forcing us to recognise upside risks to our Q4 GDP forecast of 0.3-to-0.4%

4 July 2017 BanRep Speeds up Rate Cuts, Expect Further Stimulus this Month (My Publications)

BanRep accelerated the pace of easing last Friday, cutting Colombia's key interest rate by a bold 50 basis points, to 5.75%. Economic activity has been under severe pressure in recent months. The economy expanded by only 1.1% year-over-year in Q1, following an already weak 1.6% in Q4.

4 July 2017 Why Hasn't EZ Industrial Output Responded to the PMIs? (My Publications)

Yesterday's PMI data confirmed that the EZ manufacturing sector is in rude health. The manufacturing PMI in the euro area rose to a cyclical high of 57.4 in June, from 57.0 in May, slightly above the first estimate. New orders and output growth are robust, pushing work backlogs higher and helping to sustain employment growth.

4 July 2017 Will Firms Run Down Their Huge Cash Stockpiles Soon? (My Publications)

British firms have adopted a cautious mindset since the Brexit vote and are saving a huge share of their earnings, even though high profit margins make a strong case for investing more. Firms likely will run down their cash stockpiles when they become more confident about the medium-term economic outlook, potentially boosting GDP growth powerfully.

4 January 2017 Surging EZ Inflation will Comfortably Beat the Consensus Today (My Publications)

German inflation surged in December, pointing to an upside surprise in today's advance EZ report. The headline inflation rate rose to a three-year high of 1.7% year-over-year in December, from 0.8% in November. This was the biggest increase in the year- over-year rate since 1993.

4 January 2017 Stronger Surveys Should Not Foster Optimism about Manufacturing (My Publications)

A cluster of surveys suggest that the manufacturing sector finished 2016 with a flourish, after a dismal performance for most of the year. But momentum will drain away from the sector's recovery in 2017, as higher oil prices make low value-added work unprofitable again and resurgent inflation causes domestic consumer demand to crumble.

4 January 2017 Brazil's PMI Lost Momentum in Q4, but Should Stabilize Soon (My Publications)

Brazil's manufacturing PMI edged down to a six-month low of 45.2 in December, from 46.2 in November. This marks a disappointing end to Q4, following a steady upward trend during the first half of the year, as shown in our first chart. December's new work index fell to 45.2 from 47.7 in November, driving a slowdown in production, purchases of materials, and employment. The new export orders index also deteriorated sharply in December, falling close to its lowest level since mid-2009.

4 January 2017 December's ISM looks great, but it's not definitive (My Publications)

It probably would be wise to view the increase in the ISM manufacturing index in December with a degree of skepticism. The index is supposed to record only hard activity, but we can't help but wonder if some of the euphoria evident in surveys of consumers' sentiment has leaked into responses to the ISM. That said, the jump in the key new orders index-- which tends to lead the other components--looked to be overdue, relative to the strength of the import component of China's PMI.

4 November. 2016 Inflation Concerns Now Dominate on the MPC (My Publications)

The MPC surprised markets and ourselves yesterday by the extent to which it abandoned its previous stance and is now emphasising inflation over growth risks.

4 November. 2016 Markets Stress in LatAm Increases as Fed and U.S. Election Loom (My Publications)

LatAm markets and central banks have been paying close attention to developments in the U.S. The FOMC left rates on hold on Wednesday, as expected, but underscored its core view that inflation will rise in the medium-term, requiring gradual increases in the fed funds rate.

5 Jan. 2015 An Era of Outstanding Economic Growth in Brazil Appears To Be Over (My Publications)

Dilma Rousseff was sworn in for a second term as Brazil's president last Thursday, vowing to extend social welfare programmes and promising to investigate the Petrobras corruption scandal.

5 Jan. 2015 Political Risks Return, but M1 Signals Faster Growth Ahead (My Publications)

The prospect of a Greek parliamentary election on January 25th, following Prime Minister Samaras' failure to secure support for his presidential candidate, weighed on Eurozone assets over the holidays. The looming political chaos in Greece will increase market volatility in the first quarter, but it is too early to panic.

5 January 2017 The ECB won't panic over surging EZ inflation in Q1 (My Publications)

Yesterday's advance CPI report in the Eurozone showed that inflation pressures are rising rapidly. Inflation rose to 1.1% year-over-year in December, from 0.6% in November. Surging energy inflation was the key driver, and this component likely will continue to rise in the next few months. Core inflation, however, stayed subdued, rising only slightly to 0.9%, from 0.8% in November.

5 Jan. 2015 - While We Were Out... (My Publications)

...Third quarter growth was revised up sharply and the prospects for fourth quarter consumption improved substantially. Less positively, the first signs of faltering capex in the wake of the plunge in oil prices emerged in the macro data, and the ISM manufacturing index began to reverse its run of absurd, seasonally-assisted, "strength".

5 Feb. 2015 The Eurozone Economy is Getting Better: Cyclical Recovery Ahead (My Publications)

Yesterday's retail sales report indicates that preliminary Eurozone Q4 GDP data next week are likely to paint an upbeat picture of the economy. Sales rose 0.3% month-to-month in December, equivalent to 2.8% year-over-year. An upward revision to November data means that turnover increased 0.8% quarter-on- quarter, the best since the first quarter of 2005.

5 December. 2016 Labor Market Tightening Continues (My Publications)

We're pretty sure that the unemployment rate didn't drop by 0.3 percentage points in November. We're pretty sure hourly earnings didn't fall by 0.1%. And we're pretty sure payrolls didn't rise by 178K. All the employment data are unreliable month-to-month, with the wages numbers particularly susceptible to technical quirks.

5 Feb. 2015 December Trade Data Likely to Signal Upward Q4 GDP Revision (My Publications)

Today's December international trade numbers could easily signal a substantial upward revision to fourth quarter GDP growth. When the GDP data were compiled, the December trade numbers were not available so the BEA had to make assumptions for the missing numbers, as usual.

5 January 2017 Will a Borrowing Binge Prevent a Consumer Spending Slowdown? (My Publications)

November's money and credit figures showed that households increasingly turned to unsecured debt last year in order to maintain rapid growth in consumption. Unsecured borrowing, excluding student loans, rose by £1.7B in November alone, the most since March 2005. This pushed up the year- over-year growth rate of unsecured borrowing to 10.8%--again, the highest rate since 2005--from 10.6% in October.

5 July 2017 BoJ to Jettison Quantity Target as Voters Express Discontent (My Publications)

Mr Abe's Liberal Democratic Party took a drubbing at the polls in Tokyo's Assembly election over the weekend. The consequences for fiscal spending probably are minimal but the vote strengthens the case for increased emphasis on the structural reform "arrow" and less focus on monetary policy.

5 July. 2016 Argentina's Economy is Still Shrinking, But Growth will Come (My Publications)

Argentina's overdue policy tightening, aimed at dealing with the country's severe inflation and fiscal problems, is underway. Printing of ARS at the central bank, the BCRA, to finance the budget, deficit has slowed and will be curbed further. Welfare spending, which accounts for nearly half of government spending, has been put on the chopping block.

5 July. 2016 Can We be Sure The Labor Market is Tight Enough to Boost Wage Gains? (My Publications)

We have argued consistently for some time that the next year will bring a clear acceleration in U.S. wage growth, because the unemployment rate has fallen below the Nairu and a host of business survey indicators point to clear upward wage pressures. Nominal wage growth has been constrained, in our view, by the unexpected decline in core inflation from 2012 through early 2015, which boosted real wage growth and, hence, eased the pressure from employees for bigger nominal raises.

5 July. 2016 EZ Manufacturing Will Lose Out if the Brexit Fallout Increases (My Publications)

It will take months, and perhaps years, before markets have any clarity on the U.K.'s new relationship with the EU. In the U.K., the main parties remain shell-shocked. Both leading candidates for the Tory leadership, and, hence, the post of Prime Minister, have said that they would wait before triggering Article 50.

5 July 2017 The ECB Needs a Weaker Euro in Q3 to Keep its Core CPI Forecast (My Publications)

Currency markets often make a mockery of consensus forecasts, and this year has been no exception. Monetary policy divergence between the U.S. and the Eurozone has widened this year; the spread between the Fed funds rate and the ECB's refi rate rose to a 10-year high after the Fed's last hike.

5 July 2017 The Consumer Slowdown will Ripple out to the Services Sector Soon (My Publications)

The slowdown in quarter-on-quarter growth in households' real spending to 0.4% in Q1--just half 2016's average rate--was driven entirely by a 0.1% fall in purchases of goods. Households' spending on services, by contrast, continued to grow briskly. Indeed, the 0.8% quarter-on-quarter rise in households' real spending on services exceeded 2016's average 0.5% rate.

5 July 2017 Cyclical Improvement in Brazil's Trade Balance is Nearly Over (My Publications)

Brazil's external position continue to improve, but we are sticking to our view that further significant gains are unlikely in the second half, given the stronger BRL. For now, though, we still see some momentum, with the unadjusted trade surplus increasing to USD7.2B in June, up from USD4.0B a year earlier. Exports surged 24% year-over-year but imports rose only 3%.

5 July 2017 ISM Signals Continued Industrial Recovery, but not a Boom (My Publications)

The June ISM manufacturing index signalled clearly that the industrial recovery continues, with the headline number rising to its highest level since August 2014, propelled by rising orders and production. But the industrial economy is not booming and the upturn likely will lose a bit of momentum in the second half as the rebound in oil sector capex slows.

5 December 2016 Mexico's PMIs Fell in November, Q4 GDP Outlook is Poor (My Publications)

The MXN came under pressure last week as news broke that Banxico Governor Agustin Carstens plans to resign next year. Mr. Carstens has led the bank since 2010; during his term, Banxico cut interest rates to record low levels and managed to keep inflation under control.

5 Dec. 2014 - Brace for Anything in Jobs Data (My Publications)

We often have quite strong views on the balance of risks in the monthly payroll numbers. November is not one of those months. We can generate plausible forecasts between about 50K and 370K, and that's much too wide for comfort. This is probably a payroll release to sit out.

4 September 2017 Recovery will Continue in H2, but Fiscal Reforms are Key (My Publications)

Brazil's economy likely will bounce back during the second half of this year and into 2018, after the second quarter was marred by political risk.

4 September 2017 China's PMIs Imply Producer Prices are Still Rising Rapidly (My Publications)

This Monitor provides a summary of the main points of interest over the two weeks we were out. The Chinese Caixin manufacturing PMI, published last Friday, confounded expectations for a modest fall, rising to 51.6 in August from 51.1 in July.

4 September 2017 Will the Economy be Hit by a Snap Back in Households' Saving Ratio? (My Publications)

Households' decision to reduce their saving rate sharply was the main reason why economic growth exceeded forecasters' expectations in the aftermath of the Brexit vote.

4 September 2017 Manufacturing Will Continue to Lift EZ GDP Growth in Q3 (My Publications)

Eurozone manufacturing boosted GDP growth in the first half of the year, and survey data suggest that momentum will be maintained in Q3.

4 Sept. 2015 The ECB is Spooked by Low Oil Price and Low Growth in EMs (My Publications)

The ECB left its key interest rates unchanged yesterday, and maintained the pace of QE at €60B a month, but increased the issue limit to 33% from 25%. The updated staff projections revealed a downward adjustment of the central bank's inflation and growth forecasts across all horizons up to 2017. These forecasts were accompanied by a very dovish introductory statement, noting disappointment with the pace of the cyclical recovery, and emphasizing renewed downside risks to the economy and the inflation outlook.

4 Sept. 2015 Brazil Ends the Tightening Cycle as Deep Recession Takes Hold (My Publications)

The monetary policy committee--Copom--of the BCB kept Brazil's main interest rate on hold at 14.25% at its Wednesday meeting. After seven consecutive increases since October 2014, totaling 325bp, policymakers brought the tightening cycle to an end. They are alarmed at the depth of the recession, even though inflation remains too high and public finances are collapsing.

4 Sept. 2015 Downside Risks for August Payrolls, but the Trend is Solid (My Publications)

We have no reason to think the underlying trend in payroll growth has changed--the 235K average for the past three months is as good a guide as any--but the balance of risks points clearly to a rather lower print for August. Two specific factors, neither of which have any bearing on the trend, are likely to have a significant influence on the numbers, and both will work to push the number below the 217K consensus.

5 January 2017 Payroll Indicators are Rebounding (My Publications)

Most of the leading indicators of payroll growth have rebounded in recent months, with the exception of the Help Wanted Online. Our first chart shows that the NFIB's measure of hiring intentions and the ISM non-manufacturing employment index have returned to their cycle highs, while the manufacturing employment index has risen substantially from its late 2015 low. The Help Wanted Online remains very weak, but it might have been depressed by increased prices for job postings on Craigslist.

5 Apr. 2016 Is the Dip in the Dollar Already Lifting Demand for U.S. Exports? (My Publications)

The advance trade data for February make it very likely that today's full report will show the headline deficit rose by about $½B compared to March, thanks to rising net imports of both capital and consumer goods, which were only partly offset by improvements in the oil and auto accounts.

5 August. 2016 German Manufacturing Orders Likely Jumped at the End of Q2 (My Publications)

The forecasts compiled by Bloomberg for today's June German factory orders data look too timid to us. The consensus is pencilling in a 0.5% month-to month rise, which would push the year-over-year rate down to -2.1%, from zero in May. But survey data point to an increase in year-over-year growth, which would require a large month-to-month rise due to base effects from last year.

5 August. 2016 The MPC Exceeds Expectations, but Inflation Will Constrain it Next Year (My Publications)

The MPC's package of stimulus measures, which exceeded markets' expectations, demonstrates that it is currently placing little weight on the inflation outlook. Even so, if inflation matches our expectations and overshoots the 2% target by a bigger margin next year than the MPC currently thinks is acceptable, it will have to consider its zeal for more stimulus.

5 April 2017 The Construction Sector Will Continue to Tread Water (My Publications)

Evidence that the U.K. economy has slowed significantly this year is starting to come in thick and fast. Following the Markit/CIPS manufacturing PMI on Monday --which signalled that growth in production declined in March to its lowest rate since July--the construction PMI dropped to 52.2 in March, from 52.5 in February.

5 April 2017 The Brazilian Economy is Improving: Expect a Modest Q1 GDP Recovery (My Publications)

Brazilian February industrial production data, released yesterday, were relatively positive. Output rose 0.1% month-to-month, pushing the yearover- year rate down to -0.8% from 1.4% in January. Statistical quirks were behind February's year-over-year fall, though.

5 Apr. 2016 The Great Front-Running in EZ Corporate Bonds Has Begun (My Publications)

Corporate bonds will not be included in the ECB's monthly QE purchases until the end of Q2, but markets are already preparing. The sale of non-financial corporate debt jumped to €49.4B in March, from about €25B in February, within touching distance of the record set in Q1 last year.

5 April 2017 EZ Retail Sales Snap Back, but Q1 Outlook Still looks Poor (My Publications)

Data yesterday showed that consumers in the euro area increased their spending in February, following recent weakness. Retail sales rose 0.7% month-to-month in February, reversing the cumulative 0.4% decline since November. The year-over-year rate was pushed higher to 1.8% from an upwardly revised 1.5% in January.

4 August. 2016 The PMIs Highlight the MPC's Policy Dilemma (My Publications)

The final July PMIs indicate that the post-referendum slump in activity has been even worse than the flash estimates originally implied. The manufacturing PMI was revised down to 48.2, from the 49.1 flash reading, while the services PMI was unrevised at 47.4, its lowest level since March 2009.

4 August 2017 Little from the MPC to Support Markets' Steep Near-Term Rate Path (My Publications)

Markets still see a near-40% chance of the MPC raising Bank Rate by the end of this year--the same as at the start of this week--despite the notable absence of comments from the Committee yesterday aimed at preparing the ground for a near term hike.

30 Oct. 2015 Can the Recovery in Business Investment Maintain Its Pace? (My Publications)

Business investment has punched above its weight in the economic recovery from the crash of 2008; annual real growth in capex has averaged 5% over the last five years, greatly exceeding GDP growth of 2%. This recovery is unlikely to grind to a halt soon, since profit margins are still high and borrowing costs will remain low. But corporate balance sheets are not quite as robust as they seem, while capex in the investment-intensive oil sector still has a lot further to fall.

30 Oct. 2015 Deflation is Yesterday's Story - Get Ready for Higher Inflation (My Publications)

Advance data from Germany and Spain indicate that Eurozone inflation rebounded in October. We think inflation rose to 0.2% year-over-year from -0.2%, and German data suggest the main boost will come from both core and food inflation. Inflation in Germany rose to 0.3% year-over-year from 0.0% in September, lifted by an increase in inflation of leisure and entertainment, hotels and durable goods. Food inflation also rose to 1.6% from 1.1% in September, due to surging prices for fresh fruit and vegetables.

30 Oct. 2015 The Third Quarter ECI is Set to Rebound, but How Far? (My Publications)

We have been asked by a few readers how much confidence we have in our forecast of a 1% rebound in the third quarter employment costs index, well above the 0.6% consensus and the mere 0.2% second quarter gain. The answer, unfortunately, is not much, though we do think that the balance of risks to the consensus is to the upside.

30 Oct. 2015 Brazil's Central Bank Minutes Underline Policymakers' Problems (My Publications)

The key message of the minutes of the Copom meeting, released yesterday, is that policymakers remain worried about the inflation outlook and, in particular, about uncertainties surrounding fiscal tightening. But the Committee reinforced the signal that the Selic rate is likely to remain at the current level, 14.25%, for a "sufficiently prolonged period". The economy is in a severe recession and the rebalancing process has been longer and more painful than the Central Bank anticipated.

30 November. 2016 Recovery in Lending Unlikely to Maintain October's Momentum (My Publications)

October's money data show that households and firms have regained the appetite for borrowing that they lost immediately after the referendum. But the recent rise in swap rates and the deterioration in consumers' confidence likely will cut short the revival in consumer lending, while persistent Brexit uncertainty likely will continue to subdue firms' investment intentions.

30 November. 2016 Brazilian Political Risk is Rising, But Won't Derail the Fiscal Adjustment (My Publications)

Political volatility is a recurrent theme in Brazil. Six members of President Michel Temer's cabinet resigned last Friday due to allegations of conflict of interest on a construction deal. Rumours that President Temer was involved in the affair stirred up market volatility and revived political risk concerns

30 November. 2016 EZ Inflation Data Will Disappoint Today, but it Will Rise Further (My Publications)

Yesterday's advance inflation data in Germany fell short of forecasts--ours and the consensus--for a further increase. Inflation was unchanged at 0.8% year-over-year in November, but we think this pause will be temporary.

30 Sept. 2015 Mexico's Labor Market Reflects Its Upbeat Domestic Story (My Publications)

Mexico's data over the last few weeks have confirmed our view that private consumption remains the key driver of the current economic cycle. Solid economic fundamentals, thanks to stimulative monetary policy and structural reforms, have supported the domestic economy in recent quarters. Falling inflation has also been a key driver, slowing to 2.5% by mid-September, a record low, from an average of 4% during 2014.

30 Sept. 2015 No Slowdown in Key Jobs Data, But Expect "Weak" ADP Today (My Publications)

Barely a day passes now without an email asking about "evidence" that the U.S. economy is slowing or even heading into recession. The usual factors cited are the elevated headline inventory-to-sales ratio, weak manufacturing activity, slowing earnings growth and the hit from weaker growth in China. We addressed these specific issues in the Monitor last week, on the 23rd--you can download it from our website--but the alternative approach to the end-of-the-world-is-nigh view is via the labor market.

30 September. 2016 August Spending is Less Worrying than the Scope for Higher In ation (My Publications)

Yesterday's relatively good news--we discuss the implications of the August trade data below--will be followed by rather more mixed reports today. We hope to see a partial rebound, at least, in the September Chicago PMI, but we fully expect soft August consumer spending data.

31 August 2017 Does the Corporate Borrowing Surge Signal a Capex Recovery? (My Publications)

The summer usually is a quiet time for business, but seemingly not for CFOs this year. Yesterday's money and credit figures from the Bank of England showed that borrowing by private non-financial corporations has rocketed. Net finance raised by PNFC's from all sources increased by £8.9B in July, compared to an average increase of just £2.5B in the previous 12 months.

31 August 2017 Inflation Pressures in the Eurozone are Responding to Robust Growth (My Publications)

Inflation pressures in the Eurozone probably firmed slightly in August. Data yesterday showed that inflation in Germany and Spain rose by 0.1 percentage points to 1.8% and 1.6% year-over-year respectively, and we are also pencilling-in an increase in French inflation today, ahead of the aggregate EZ report.

30 September. 2016 Trump Fears Prompts a Rate Hike in Mexico, the MXN Rallies, for Now (My Publications)

Mexico's central bank, Banxico, last night capitulated again to the depreciation of the MXN and increased interest rates by 50bp, for the third time this year. This week's rebound in the currency was not enough to prevent action.

30 September 2016 Today's Eurozone Inflation Data Likely Will Surprise to the Upside (My Publications)

Today's advance CPI data will show that EZ inflation pressures rose further at the end of Q3. The headline number likely will exceed the consensus. We think inflation rose to 0.5% year-over-year in September from 0.2% in August, slightly higher than the 0.4% consensus.

30 Sept. 2015 The Eurozone is Probably Back in Deflation, But Not For Long (My Publications)

Advance inflation data from Germany and Spain yesterday indicate that the Eurozone slipped back into deflation in September. German inflation fell to 0.0% in September from 0.2% in August, and deflation intensified in Spain as inflation fell to -0.9% from -0.4% last month. This likely pushed the advance Eurozone estimate--released today--below zero. We think inflation fell to -0.1% in September, down from +0.1% in August. The fall will be due mainly to falling energy prices, and we continue to think that the underlying trend in inflation is stabilising, or even turning up.

30 September 2016 Britain is Turning to Debt to Maintain an Illusion of Prosperity (My Publications)

Today's balance of payments figures for the second quarter likely will underline that the U.K. has financed strong growth in domestic consumption by amassing debts with the rest of the world at a breakneck pace.

30 November. 2016 ADP Likely to Signal Decent Payroll Growth (My Publications)

The November ADP employment report today likely will show private payrolls rose by about 180K. We have no reason to think that the trend in payroll growth has changed much in recent months, though the official data do appear to be biased to the upside in the fourth quarter, probably as a result of seasonal adjustment problems triggered by the crash of 2008. We can't detect any clear seasonal fourth quarter bias in the ADP numbers.

30 Nov. 2015 Stress Tests Should Underline Greater Resilience of U.K. Banks (My Publications)

The resilience of the U.K. financial system will be in focus this week. On Tuesday, the Bank of England's Prudential Regulation Authority, the PRA, will publish the results of stress tests of the U.K.'s seven largest banks. Concurrently, the Bank's Financial Policy Committee, the FPC, will publish its semi-annual Financial Stability Report and announce whether it will deploy any of its macroprudential tools.

30 Mar. 2015 Same Old Song - The Fed and the MXN are key factors for Banxico (My Publications)

Mexico's central bank left its main interest rate unchanged last week, citing the need for cautious monetary policy as the economy has lost some momentum during the first months of the year, despite the risk of inflation pass-though effects from the weaker MXN.

30 March 2017 Can Unemployment Fall to 4% or Less? What Would the Fed do? (My Publications)

The unemployment rate hit its post-1970 low in April 2000, at the peak of the first internet boom, when it nudged down to just 3.8%. The low in the next cycle, first reached in October 2006, was rather higher, at 4.4%.

30 March 2017 How will French Consumers React to Lower Real Wage Growth? (My Publications)

Leading indicators for consumers' spending in France are sending conflicting signals. Survey data suggest that households are in a spendthrift mood. Data yesterday showed that the headline consumer sentiment index was unchanged in March at 100, the cycle high.

30 Mar. 2015 Output Gap Uncertainty Paralysis Keeps the Fed's Focus on Wages (My Publications)

Perhaps the biggest single reason for the Fed's reluctance, so far, to move away from monetary policy designed to cope with catastrophe is that no-one knows for sure how much of the damage has been repaired, and how close the economy is to normalizing.

30 June. 2016 Will the New Government Sweeten the Fiscal Pill? (My Publications)

Fiscal policy is in limbo until a new leader of the Conservative party has been elected on September 9. Shortly after, however, a new Budget--or a Budget disguised as an Autumn Statement--will be held.

30 June. 2016 Political Vacuum in the U.K. Prompts the EU to Up the Pressure (My Publications)

Leaders of the major Eurozone economies were in no mood to give concessions as they met with outgoing U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron this week for the first time since the referendum. German Chancellor Angela Merkel said that she sees "no way back from the Brexit vote." This followed comments that the U.K. couldn't be expected to "cherry-pick" the EU rules that it would like to follow after a new deal.

30 June. 2016 The Fed's Focus Will Return to the Wage Outlook, Unchanged by Brexit (My Publications)

We aren't materially changing our U.S. economic forecasts in the wake of the U.K.'s Brexit vote, though we have revised our financial forecasts. The net tightening of financial conditions in the U.S. since the referendum is just not big enough--indeed, it's nothing like big enough--to justify moving our economic forecasts.

30 March 2017 Money Data Highlight the Weak Start to 2017 (My Publications)

February's money and credit figures supported recent labour market and retail sales data suggesting that consumers are increasingly financially strained. Households' broad money holdings increased by just 0.2% month-to-month in February, half the average pace of the previous six months.

30 May 2017 How Durable is the Euro's Rally Against the Dollar? (My Publications)

Fiscal stimulus, partly financed by a border adjustment tax, and Fed rate hikes, were supposed to be a powerful cocktail driving a stronger dollar in 2017. But so far only the Fed has delivered--we expect another rate hike next month--while Mr. Trump has disappointed in the White House.

30 Nov. 2015 Capex to Rebound--Modestly--as the Oil Hit Is Overtaken (My Publications)

Capex data by industry are available only on an annual basis, with a very long lag, so we can't directly observe the impact the collapse in the oil sector has had on total equipment spending. But we can make the simple observation that orders for non-defense capital goods were rising strongly and quite steadily-- allowing for the considerable noise in the data--from mid-2013 through mid-2014, before crashing by 9% between their September peak and the February low. It cannot be a coincidence that this followed a 55% plunge in oil prices.

30 Nov. 2015 South American Central Banks Still Worrying About Inflation (My Publications)

Colombia's peso has been one of the most battered currencies in LatAm this year, due mainly to the sharp fall in oil prices, the country's primary export. The COP has dropped about 23% this year against the USD. At the same time, other temporary factors, most notably the impact of El Niño on food prices, have done a great deal of inflation damage too. October's food prices increased 1.4% month-to-month, pushing the year-over-year rate up to 8.8% from an average of 6.6% in the first half of the year. Overall inflation has jumped to 5.9% in October from 3.8% in January, forcing BanRep's board to act aggressively.

30 Nov. 2015 Bullish Economic Data Will Not Deter the ECB this Week (My Publications)

Bullish money supply data last week added to the evidence that the Eurozone's business cycle is strengthening. Broad money growth--M3--rose to 5.3% year-over-year in October from 4.9% in September. Most of the increase came from a surge in short-term debt issuance, rising 8.4% year-over-year, following an inexplicable 1.4% fall in September.

30 May 2017 BanRep Turns Cautious, but Expect Further Cuts as Activity will be Weak (My Publications)

BanRep cut Colombia's key interest rate by 25 basis points last Friday, to 6.25%. We were expecting a bolder cut, as economic activity has been under severe pressures in recent months.

30 May 2017 Should Investors Start to Fear a Hung Parliament? (My Publications)

The Conservatives' opinion poll rating has fallen dramatically over the last 10 days or so, pushing sterling down and forcing investors to confront the possibility that Theresa May might not increase her majority much from the current paltry 17 MPs.

30 May 2017 Why Don't Markets Take the Fed's Interest Rate Forecasts Seriously? (My Publications)

Markets expect the Fed will fail to follow through on its current intention to raise rates twice more this year and three times next year. Part of this skepticism reflects recent experience.

31 August 2017 Third Quarter Consumption off to a Strong Start? (My Publications)

Today's wave of economic reports are all likely to be strong. The most important single number is the increase in real consumers' spending in July, the first month of the third quarter.

31 August. 2015 Brazil's Recession, Worse Than Feared And No Respite In Sight (My Publications)

Brazil's recession has deepened. Overall, the economy has sunk into its worst slump in six years, and the recovery will be painful and slow. This is not surprising, but the sharper than expected 3% contraction over the first half of the year may have thrown a further bucket of cold water on President Rousseff, whose popularity ratings have fallen to a level not seen since 1992, when President Collor de Mello was forced out of office after being impeached for corruption. Real GDP in Brazil fell 1.9% quarter-on-quarter in Q2, much worse than the downwardly revised 0.7% contraction in Q1.

31 May. 2016 Can we Still be Confident that the Saving Rate Will Fall? (My Publications)

Europeans, who usually save more of their income than Americans, have spent all the windfall from falling gas prices. Americans have not. It is tempting, therefore, to argue that perhaps Americans have come to see the error of their low-saving ways, and are now seeking to emulate the behavior of high-saving Europeans. Undeniably, the plunge in gas prices has given Americans the opportunity to save more without making hard choices.

31 May. 2016 Rebound in German Inflation is the Beginning of a Sustained Pick-Up (My Publications)

Advance CPI data yesterday continue to indicate that inflation pressures remain depressed in the Eurozone's largest economy, for now. Inflation in Germany rose slightly in May, but only to 0.1% year-over-year, from -0.1% in April. The downward pressure on the headline from the crash in oil prices remains significant. Energy prices fell 7.9% year-over-year, slowing slightly from the 8.5% drop in the year to April.

31 October. 2016 Q3 Growth Likely Wasn't 2.9%, Headwinds in Q4 (My Publications)

We are struggling to make sense of the third quarter GDP numbers. The reality is that the massive surge in soybean exports--which we estimate contributed 0.9 percentage points, gross, to GDP growth--mostly came from falling inventory, because the soybean harvest mostly takes place in Q4.

31 May. 2016 Banxico is Managing the Peso, Not the Business Cycle, For Now (My Publications)

Banxico's quarterly inflation report, released last week, underscored concerns over growth as well as the weakness of the MXN and the risks p osed by the Fed's imminent tightening. Policymakers downgraded Mexico's GDP forecast for 2017 to 2.3-to-3.3% year-over-year, from 2.5-to-3.5%. Weaker-than-expected U.S. manufacturing activity is behind the downshift.

31 May 2017 Manifestos Point to Very Different Public Borrowing Paths (My Publications)

The recent narrowing of the Conservatives' opinion poll lead suggests that investors, particularly in the gilt market, now must consider other parties' fiscal proposals.

31 May 2017 Argentina's Economic Recovery Continues, but Brazil's is at Risk (My Publications)

The outlook for Argentina is improving. We expect economic growth to remain quite strong over the next year, despite a relatively soft start to 2017 and increasing external threats in recent weeks. The INDEC index of economic activity--a monthly proxy for GDP--is volatile, rising 1.9% month-to-month in March after a 2.6% drop in February, but the underlying trend is improving.

31 May 2017 Eurozone Core Inflation Likely will Undershoot the Consensus Today (My Publications)

Today's advance EZ CPI report likely will show that inflation pressures eased in May. We think inflation slipped to 1.5% year-over-year, from 1.9% in April, as the boost to the core rate from the late Easter faded.

31 October. 2016 Mexico and Brazil Are Stabilizing at Different Speeds, For Now (My Publications)

While we were out, the economic news in LatAm was mostly positive. The main upside surprise came from Mexico, with the IGAE activity index--a monthly proxy for GDP--rising 2.9% year-over-year in August, up from 1.2% in July, and an average of 2.4% in Q2. A modest rebound was anticipated, but the headline was much better than we and the markets expected.

31 October. 2016 MPC Likely to Reaffirm Easing Bias, to Markets Surprise (My Publications)

The MPC would have to change tack sharply on Thursday in order to live up to the markets' expectation that there is a near-zero chance of another rate cut within the next year.

4 April 2017 Sterling's Depreciation is a Mixed Blessing for Manufacturers (My Publications)

The latest Markit/CIPS manufacturing survey has dashed hopes that sterling's depreciation and the pickup in global trade will facilitate strong growth in U.K. production this year. The PMI dropped to 54.2 in March, from 54.6 in February.

4 April 2017 The Spanish and U.K. Navies won't Have to Fight over Gibraltar (My Publications)

The EU's negotiations with the U.K. over Brexit are off to a bad start. The position in Brussels is that negotiations on a new relationship can't begin before the bill on the U.K.'s existing membership is settled. But this has been met with resistance by Westminster; the U.K. does not recognise the condition of an upfront payment to leave.

4 August 2017 China's Reform Scorecard Part 4: Effective Bad Debt Screening (My Publications)

In yesterday's Monitor we set out how government will have to prepare for an increase in debt issuance both to bring debts on-balance sheet and also to issue new debt as government is obliged to run deficits while the corporate sector deleverages.

4 April 2017 Mexican Markets Had a Good Q1, the Next Test is on the Political Front (My Publications)

LatAm, particularly Mexico, has dealt with Donald Trump's presidency better than expected thus far. Indeed, the MXN rose 10.7% against the USD in Q1, the stock market has recovered after its initial post-Trump plunge, and risk metrics have eased significantly.

4 Apr. 2016 While We Were Out... (My Publications)

The March employment report didn't tell us what we really want to know. The underlying trend in wage growth remains obscured by the calendar quirk which depresses reported hourly earnings when the 15th of the month--pay day for people paid semi-monthly -- falls after the payroll survey week.

4 Apr. 2016 Did the Brazilian Industrial Slump Ease Significantly in Q1? (My Publications)

The Brazilian manufacturing sector remains very depressed by weak end-demand, but the misery is easing, at the margin. Industrial production fell 2.5% month-to-month in February, equivalent to an eye-watering 9.8% contraction year-over-year, but this was rather less bad than the 13.6% slump in January.

4 Apr. 2016 ECB QE is Failing to Lift Equities, but Bond Yields are Being Crushed (My Publications)

Today's Sentix survey of Eurozone investor sentiment likely will remain downbeat. We think the headline index rose only trivially, to 6.0 in April from 5.5 in March, and that the expectations index was unchanged at 2.8. Weakness in equities due to global growth fears and negative earnings revisions likely is the key driver of below-par investor sentiment.

31 May 2017 A Consumer Rebound is Underway, but Watch out for Healthcare Costs (My Publications)

In the wake of April's 0.2% increase in real consumers' spending, and the upward revisions to the first quarter numbers, we now think that second quarter spending is on course to rise at an annualized rate of about 3.5%.

31 March 2017 Q4 National Accounts will Show Stronger, but Fragile, Growth (My Publications)

The national accounts look set to show that GDP growth in the fourth quarter was even stronger than previously estimated. Earlier this month, quarter-on-quarter growth in construction output in Q4 was revised up to 1.2%, from 0.2%. As a result, construction's contribution to GDP growth will rise by 0.07 percentage points.

31 August. 2016 German Core Inflation Slipped in August, but Should Rebound Soon (My Publications)

The upward trend in German inflation stalled temporarily in August, with an unchanged 0.4% year-over-year reading in August. A dip in core inflation likely offset a continued increase in energy price inflation. The detailed final report next month will give the full story, but state data suggest that the core rate was depressed by a dip in price increases of household appliances, restaurant services, as well as "other goods and services."

31 January 2017 Focus on Strong EZ Q4 GDP Data On a Busy Day in the Eurozone (My Publications)

Today will be an incredibly busy day for EZ investors with no fewer than eight major economic reports. Overall, we think the data will tell a story of a stable business cycle upturn and rising inflation. Markets will focus on advance Q4 GDP data in France and in the euro area as a whole. Our mo dels, and survey data, indicate that the EZ economy strengthened at the end of 2016, and we expect the headline data to beat the consensus.

31 January 2017 Will Faster Wage Growth Finally Trigger An Acceleration in the ECI? (My Publications)

The headline employment cost index has been remarkably dull recently, with three straight 0.6% quarterly increases. The consensus forecast for today's report, for the three months to December, is for the same again.

31 August. 2016 Colombia's Economy Slowed in Q2, Will it Rebound Soon? (My Publications)

Colombia's second quarter GDP data, released Monday, revealed a dismal 2.0% year-over-year growth rate, down from 2.5% in Q1. GDP rose by a very modest 0.2% quarter-on-quarter, for the second consecutive quarter. The year-over-year rate was the slowest since the end of the financial crisis, but it is in line with our 2.1% forecast for this year as a whole.

31 August. 2016 Cheaper Borrowing Costs Won't Reignite Firms' Investment Appetite (My Publications)

July's money and credit figures provided more evidence that firms have become reluctant to invest following the Brexit vote. Lending by U.K. banks to private non-financial companies--PNFCs--rose by just 0.2% month-to-month in July, below the average 0.5% increase of the previous six months.

31 August. 2015 Fed Officials All Over the Map, But September Still Looks Unlikely (My Publications)

FOMC members in fleeces took to the airwaves en masse on Friday morning from Jackson Hole, but most said pretty much what you'd expect them to say. Arch-hawks Loretta Mester and no-quite-so-hawkish Jim Bullard strongly suggested that they think the time to raise rates is very near, while super-dove Naryana Kocherlakota said he doesn't regard a near-term hike as "appropriate". No surprises there.

31 August. 2016 ADP Likely to Report Strong August Payrolls, But it's Unreliable (My Publications)

We are expecting a hefty increase in the August ADP employment number today--our forecast is 225K, above the 175K consensus --but we do not anticipate a similar official payroll number on Friday. Remember, the ADP number is based on a model which incorporates lagged official employment data, the Philly Fed's ADS Business Conditions Index, and data from firms which use ADP for payroll processing.

31 January 2017 Will the MPC Need to Raise Rates to Cool Consumer Credit Growth? (My Publications)

December's money data likely will bring further signs that the U.K. economy's growth spurt late last year was paid for with unsecured borrowing. Retail sales fell by 1.9% month-to-month in December, so we doubt that unsecured borrowing will match November's £1.7B increase, which was the biggest since March 2005.

31 July 2017 How Tight Can Japan's Labour Market go? (My Publications)

The jobless rate fell back to 2.8% in June after the surprise rise to 3.1% in May. This drop takes us back to where we were in April before voluntary unemployment jumped in May.

31 March 2017 The Economic Outlook is Improving in Brazil, and even in Mexico (My Publications)

Downside risks to our growth forecast for Brazil and Mexico for this year have diminished this week. In Brazil, concerns over the potential impact of the meat scandal on the economy have diminished. Some key global customers, including Hong Kong, have in recent days eased restrictions on imports from Brazil, and other counties have ended their bans.

31 March 2017 Eurozone Inflation Data will Undershoot the Consensus Today (My Publications)

Yesterday's advance data from Germany and Spain suggest that today's Eurozone inflation report will undershoot the consensus. In Germany, headline inflation slipped to 1.6% in March from 2.2% in February, and in Spain the headline rate plunged to 2.3% from 3.0%.

31 March 2017 February Consumption Will Look Grim (My Publications)

On the face of it, the February consumer spending data, due today, will contradict the upbeat signal from confidence surveys. The dramatic upturn in sentiment since the election is consistent with a rapid surge in real consumption, but we're expecting to see unchanged real spending in February, following a startling 0.3% decline in January.

31 Mar. 2015 Soft first quarter consumption will change course in the second (My Publications)

We now have consumption data for two-thirds of the first quarter, making it is easy to see that a near-herculean spending effort is required to lift the quarter as a whole into anything like respectable territory. After February's 0.1% dip, real spending has to rise by at least 0.4% in March just to generate a 2.0% annualized gain for the quarter, and a 2.5% increase requires a 0.7% jump.

31 July 2017 The Inflation Report Likely Won't Boost 2017 Rate Hike Odds (My Publications)

The pullback in CPI inflation in June and continued slow GDP growth in Q2 mean that the MPC almost certainly will keep Bank Rate at 0.25% on Thursday.

31 July. 2015 Energy Will Depress July Inflation Print, But Core Inflation is Rising (My Publications)

Renewed weakness in food and energy prices weighed on Eurozone inflation in July, but core inflation probably rose slightly. German inflation fell to 0.2% year-over-year in July, down from 0.3% in June. The hit came entirely from falling energy and food inflation, though, with the jump in services inflation suggesting rising core inflation.

20 June 2017 As the Balance Sheet Shrinks, how can we Assess the Fed's Stance? (My Publications)

The initial pace of the Fed's balance sheet run-off, which we expect to start in October, will be very low. At first, the balance sheet will shrink by only $10B per month, split between $6B Treasuries and $4B mortgages.

22 February 2017 Q4 GDP Likely to be Revised up, but Momentum won't Endure (My Publications)

We expect the official estimate of quarter-on-quarter GDP growth in Q4 to be revised up to 0.7% today, from last month's preliminary estimate of 0.6%. The consensus forecast is for no revision, so the data likely will boost interest rate expectations and sterling, if we're right.

12 Feb. 2016 Collapse in Equity Prices Still Not a Convincing Signal of Recession (My Publications)

The downturn in equity prices deepened yesterday, with the FTSE 100 index closing at 5,537, 22% below its April 2015 peak. We remain unconvinced, however, that financial market turmoil is set to push the U.K. economy into a recession. We continue to take comfort from the weakness of the past relationship between equity prices and economic activity.

12 Feb. 2016 Mexico's Industrial Economy Struggled in Q4 - Better Ahead? (My Publications)

Yesterday's Mexican industrial data painted a downbeat picture of the sector at the end of last year, and highlighted the downside risks facing the economy in the first half of this year. Industrial output fell 0.1% month-to-month and was flat year over-year in December, with weakness in all sectors except manufacturing. Overall, industrial activity expanded by only 0.2% year-over-year in the fourth quarter, the slowest pace since late 2013.

12 Feb. 2016 More Downside Retail Sales Risk, Thanks to Gas, Cheaper Imports (My Publications)

Outside the battered energy sector, the most consistently disconcerting economic numbers last year, in the eyes of the markets, were the monthly retail sales data. Non-auto sales undershot consensus forecasts in nine of the 12 months in 2015, with a median shortfall of 0.3%.

12 Feb. 2015 Still waiting for growth in Italy (My Publications)

In yesterday's Monitor, we lamented the lack of growth in the French economy. The outlook is not much brighter in Italy. We think Italian GDP was unchanged quarter-on-quarter in Q4, slightly better than the -0.1% consensus but still very soft.

12 Feb. 2015 Downside Risk to January Retail Sales, Due to Gas and the Core (My Publications)

You might remember that the December retail sales report surprised significantly to the downside, thanks to the impact of falling gasoline prices. The data are reported in nominal dollars, not volumes, so falling prices depress the numbers.

12 December 2016 Japan's Depreciation Didn't Boost Growth, Why Would Britain's? (My Publications)

Japan is the only major advanced economy to have recently experienced an exchange rate depreciation as large as Britain's. Between July 2012 and May 2013, the yen f ell by 24%, matching sterling's depreciation since its peak in August 2015.

12 December. 2016 Participation Won't Rise Enough to Prevent Higher Inflation (My Publications)

It appears to be something of an article of faith among economic advisors to President-elect Trump that substantial fiscal stimulus will generate faster growth without boosting inflation, because both labor participation and productivity growth will rise.

12 Feb. 2016 Poor EZ Q4 GDP Data Likely Already Priced-in by Markets (My Publications)

Today's Q4 GDP report in the Eurozone likely will show that growth slowed again at the end of last year. We think GDP growth dipped to 0.2% quarter-on-quarter in Q4, down from 0.3% in Q3, and risks to our forecast are firmly tilted to the downside. The initial release does not contain details, but we think a slowdown in consumers' spending and a drag from net exports were the main drivers of the softening.

12 Jan. 2015 - Unemployment Plunging Towards the Nairu - What Will the Fed Do? (My Publications)

The strength in payrolls in recent months is real. The three-month moving average increase in private payrolls now stands at 280K, despite adverse seasonal adjustments totalling 91K in the fourth quarter, compared to the same period last year.

12 Jan. 2016 Why are Payroll Gains So Strong Relative to GDP Growth? (My Publications)

The combination of astounding fourth quarter payroll numbers and weak GDP growth has prompted a good deal of bemused head-scratching among investors and the commentariat. The contrast is startling, with Q4 private payrolls averaging 276K, a 2.4% annualized rate of increase, while the initial estimate for growth seems likely close to 1%. Even on a year-over-year basis, stepping back from the quarterly noise, Q4 growth is likely to be only 2% or so.

12 January 2017 Eurozone Equities in 2017: Another Year of Dashed Hopes? (My Publications)

A strong December didn't change the story of another year of Eurozone equity underperformance in 2016. The total return of the MSCI EU, ex-UK, last year was a paltry 3.5%, compared to 11.6% and 10.6% for the S&P 500 and MSCI EM respectively. In principle, the conditions are in place for a reversal in this sluggish performance are present. Equities in the euro area do best when excess liquidity--defined as M1 growth less GDP growth and inflation--is rising.

12 January 2017 GDP Growth Likely Edged Down in Q4, Despite November's IP Surge (My Publications)

Yesterday's industrial production, construction output and trade data for November collectively suggest that the economy lost a little momentum in the fourth quarter. GDP growth likely slowed to 0.5% quarter-on-quarter in Q4, from 0.6% in Q3. Growth remains set to slow further this year, as inflation shoots up and constrains consumers.

12 Jan. 2016 Stable Eurozone GDP Growth and Higher Inflation in 2016? (My Publications)

The recent cyclical upturn in the EZ began in the first quarter of 2013. GDP growth has accelerated almost uninterruptedly for the last two years to 1.5% year-over-year in Q3, despite the Greek debt crisis and slower growth in emerging markets. Overall we think the recovery will continue with full-year GDP growth of about 1.6%. But we also think the business cycle is maturing, characterised by stable GDP growth and higher inflation, and we see the economy slowing next year.

12 Jan. 2016 Drop in November Production to Set the Tone for Q4 GDP (My Publications)

November's industrial production figures, released today, look set to surprise the consensus to the downside, underscoring our view that the economic recovery is continuing to lose momentum. Moreover, with sterling remaining uncompetitive, despite depreciating over recent weeks, and lower oil prices making extracting oil from the North Sea unprofitable, the industrial sector likely will impede the economic recovery further in 2016.

12 Jan. 2015 More Misery for Industrial Production in the Eurozone (My Publications)

Manufacturing data for the euro area's major economies point to renewed downside risks for GDP growth, despite the likely tailwind to consumption from low oil prices. November industrial production fell 0.1% and 0.3% month-to-month in Germany and France respectively, indicating that the manufacturing sector remains under pressure.

12 Jan. 2015 Recent Data Point to Downside Risks for the Brazilian Economy (My Publications)

Economic growth in Brazil is not likely to improve significantly this year. Our pessimism was underscored by the November industrial production data last week, showing a contraction of 0.7%, and pushing output to its lowest level since June.

12 December 2016 German wage growth is accelerating (My Publications)

Data on Friday showed that German wage growth is firming. Nominal labour costs rose 2.5% year-overyear in Q3, accelerating from a revised 1.9% increase in Q2. The main driver was a strong rebound in gross earnings growth, which rebounded to 2.4% year-over-year from an oddly weak 1.2% in Q2.

12 December 2016 Brazilian Inflation Dropped in November (My Publications)

Friday's inflation report for Brazil confirmed that inflation is rapidly falling towards the BCB's target range, helping to make the case for stepping up the pace of monetary easing to 50bp at the Copom's January meeting.

12 Apr. 2016 Will Mr. Draghi Upgrade his Bazooka to a Helicopter this Year? (My Publications)

Two years ago markets believed that the institutional setup of the Eurozone would be a straitjacket on the ECB, preventing QE. Aggressive policy actions since then have proven this hypothesis wrong. But inflation remains low and sentiment data weakened ominously in the first quarter.

12 April 2017 Don't Worry About the Weakness in C&I Lending, it will Rebound (My Publications)

Friday's weekly report on the assets and liabilities of U.S. commercial banks will complete the picture or March and, hence, the first quarter. It won't be pretty. With most of the March data already released, a month-to-month decline in lending to commercial and industrial companies of about 0.7% is a done deal. That would be the biggest drop since May 2010, and it would complete a 1% annualized fall for the first quarter, the worst performance since Q3 2010. The year-over-year rate of growth slowed to just 5.0% in Q1, from 8.0% in the fourth quarter and 10.3% in the first quarter of last year.

12 April 2017 Inflation Pressures Remain more Intense than the MPC Expected (My Publications)

CPI inflation held steady at 2.3% in March, as we and the consensus had expected. Nonetheless, the consumer price figures boosted sterling and bond yields, as the details of the report made it clear that inflation is on a very steep upward path.

12 Apr. 2016 Foreign Trade Set to Boost Q2 Growth, Thanks to Dollar, Oil (My Publications)

We fully expect to learn today that import prices rose in March for the first time since June last year. Our forecast for a 1% increase is in line with the consensus, but the margin of error is probably about plus or minus half a percent, and an increase of more than 1.2% would be the biggest in a single month in four years. Most, if not all, of the jump will be due to the rebound in oil prices.

11 September 2017 Inflation in Mexico Looks Scary but Soon will Start to Fall Rapidly (My Publications)

Mexico's inflation nudged up to a fresh 16-year high in August, but the details of the report confirmed that underlying pressures are easing, in line with our core view.

11 September 2017 Will the MPC Step up its Rhetoric to Support the Pound? (My Publications)

The key question for the MPC at this week's meeting is whether it is prepared to tolerate the consequences for inflation of sterling's further depreciation since its last meeting in August.

11 September 2017 China's Trade Surplus Edges Lower with net Trade Contributing Little (My Publications)

Chinese exports grew by just 5.5% in dollar terms year-over-year in August, down from 7.2% in July. Export growth continues to trend down, with a rise of just 0.2% in RMB terms in the three months to August compared to the previous three months, significantly slower than the 4.8% jump at the p eak in January.

12 April 2017 Mexico's Industrial Sector Resilient in Q1, Despite External Threats (My Publications)

Yesterday's industrial production report in Mexico added weight to the idea that the sector improved marginally in the first quarter, despite many external threats. Industrial output rose 0.1% month-to-month in February, following a similar gain in January. The calendar-adjusted year-over-year rate rose to -0.1%, after a modest 0.3% contraction in January.

12 August. 2015 China's Devaluation Won't Deter the Fed, Or Wreck the Economy (My Publications)

China's 1.8% downshift in the RMB/dollar reference rate will make only a microscopic difference to the pace of U.S. economic growth and inflation. It will not deter the Fed from raising rates if the domestic labor market continues to tighten, as all the data suggest. The drop in the RMB merely restores the nominal exchange rate to its fall 2012 level, since which time the real exchange rate has risen by some 20%, according to the BIS.

12 Dec. 2014 Mexico's Data have been Upbeat but Downside Risks are Growing (My Publications)

Recent Mexican data have been upbeat, supporting our view that a gradual recovery is underway. In the key auto sector, for example, production increased 11.4% year-over-year in November, while exports rose 5.8% year-over-year in October.

12 Dec. 2014 The Noose is Tightening On the Eurozone As Deflation Looms (My Publications)

Inflation in the Eurozone is under pressure from all angles, and data from France and Germany yesterday confirmed that the risk of outright deflation has risen significantly. In Germany, inflation fell to 0.6% yearover- year in November, and in France the CPI rose a paltry 0.3%.

12 August. 2016 Have Gilt Yields Finally Reached Their Floor? (My Publications)

Gilt yields have collapsed this year, aided by a surge in safe-haven demand, the much lower outlook for overnight interest rates and the resumption of QE. Bond yields also have fallen globally, but the drop in the ten-year gilt yields to a record low of 0.53%, from nearly 2% at the beginning of 2016, has greatly exceeded the declines elsewhere, as our first chart shows.

12 August. 2016 Consumption Growth Will Slow in Q3, but Remain Respectable (My Publications)

It's unrealistic to have a repeat of the second quarter's 4.2% leap in consumers' spending as your base case for the third quarter. It's not impossible, though, given the potential for the saving rate to continue to decline, and the apparently favorable base effect from the second quarter.

12 August. 2015 Industrial Production in Mexico is Stabilizing, Better News Ahead? (My Publications)

Mexico's latest industrial production figures, released yesterday, showed that growth is stabilizing, but it likely will not accelerate any time soon. June output rose 1.4% year-over-year, rebounding from the 1.0% contraction in May, and matching April's gain. The increase in output was relatively broad-based, with solid gains in mining and utilities.

12 August. 2016 Brazil's Inflation Stubbornly High, but Temporary Pressures Will Ease (My Publications)

Brazil's benchmark inflation index, the IPCA, rose 0.5% unadjusted month-to-month in July, pushing the year-over-year rate down marginally to 8.7%, from 8.8% in June. Overall inflation pressures in Brazil are easing, especially in regulated prices, which have been the main driver of the disinflation trend this year. But market-set prices are still causing problems.

12 January 2017 How Can Trump Deliver Quickly on his Tax Cut Pledges? (My Publications)

As far as we can tell, most forecasters expect the impact of fiscal stimulus this year to be gradual, with perhaps most of the boost to growth coming next year. At this point, with no concrete proposals either from the new administration or Congress, anything can happen, and we can't rule out the idea of a slow roll-out of tax cuts and spending increases.

12 July 2017 Andean Policymakers Will Meet Market Expectations Tomorrow (My Publications)

Markets are looking for the BCCh to remain on hold and the BCRP to ease on Thursday; we think they will be right. In Chile, the BCCh will hold rates because inflation pressures are absent and economic activity is stabilizing following temporary hits in Q1 and early Q2.

12 May. 2016 Does the Challenger Survey Signal an Upturn in the Pace of Layoffs? (My Publications)

You may have seen the chart below, which shows what appears to be an alarming divergence between the official jobless claims numbers and the Challenger survey's measure of job cut announcements. We should say at the outset that the chart makes the fundamental mistake of comparing the unadjusted Challenger data with the seasonally adjusted claims data.

12 May. 2016 EZ Inflation Expectations are Low, But Will Creep Higher Soon (My Publications)

The renewed decline in bond EZ bond yields has raised the question of whether inflation expectations will recover at all in this cycle. We think they will, and we also believe 10-year yields will rise towards 1%-to-1.2% towards the end of the year. But two factors will keep inflation expectations and yields in check in the near term.

12 Nov. 2015 German Inflation Will Rise Faster than the ECB and Market Expect (My Publications)

CPI data today in France and Germany will confirm that current inflation rates remain very low in the euro area. Inflation in Germany likely rose to 0.3% year-over-year from 0.0% in September, in line with the consensus and initial estimate. State data indicate that the rise was driven by surging fresh food prices and slightly higher services inflation, principally due to a jump in the volatile recreation and culture sector. Looking ahead, food prices will drop back, but energy inflation will rise rapidly as last year's plunge drops out of the year-over-year comparison, while upward core pressure is now emerging too.

12 May. 2015 Small firms in better shape than NFIB suggests - Rebound due (My Publications)

On the face of it, small business have taken quite a hit over the past few months. The headline index from the NFIB survey of small businesses has dropped to a nine-month low of 95.2 in March from 100.4 in December. As a result, the gap between the NFIB and the ISM manufacturing indexes, which had been narrowing, has widened again.

20 June 2017 EZ Construction Upturn Signals Upside Risks to GDP Growth (My Publications)

We continue to see signs of a strengthening upturn in Eurozone construction. Output in construction rose 0.3% month-to-month in April, pushing the year-over-year rate down to 3.2%, from an upwardly revised 3.8% in March.

12 May 2017 Rates Hikes Still Distant, Even if Brexit Transition Occurs Smoothly (My Publications)

The absence of a hawkish slant to the MPC's Inflation Report or the minutes of its meeting suggest that an increase in interest rates remains a long way off.

12 May 2017 Will Mr. Macron Unleash Animal Spirits in Eurozone Equities? (My Publications)

Emmanuel Macron's victory in France has lifted investors' hopes that the good times in the Eurozone economy and equity markets are here to stay. On the face of it, we share markets' optimism. Mr. Macron and his opposite number in Germany--our base case is that Ms. Merkel will remain Chancellor--will form a strong pro-EU axis in the core of the Eurozone.

12 Nov. 2015 NFIB Points to Rising Capex, and Modest Increases in Core Inflation (My Publications)

To the extent that markets bother with the NFIB survey at all, most of the attention falls on the labor market numbers. But these data--hiring, compensation, jobs hard-to-fill--haven't changed much in recent months, and in any event most of them are released the week before the main survey, which appeared yesterday. The message from the labor data is unambiguous: Hiring remains very strong, employers are finding it very difficult to fill open positions, and compensation costs are accelerating.

12 Nov. 2015 Slight Weakening in Wage Growth Won't Delay the MPC (My Publications)

Markets were right to conclude that September's slightly weaker average weekly wage figures will have little impact on the MPC's decision on when to raise official interest rates. Fundamentally, wage pressures are building and likely will contribute to pushing CPI inflation back to its 2% target towards the end of 2016.

12 October. 2016 The Rise in Gilt Yields Won't Run Out of Steam (My Publications)

Gilt yields have risen sharply over the last month, even though the Monetary Policy Committee is just one-third of the way through the £60B bond purchase programme announced in August. Government bond yields in other G7 economies also have increased, but not as much as in Britain.

12 October. 2016 After High Volatility in Q4, LatAm Currencies Will Strengthen in 2017 (My Publications)

Investors will increase their focus on exchange rates as the US presidential election and the Fed's next rate hike approach. Markets are becoming concerned that a surge in the USD could trigger another spike in LatAm currency volatility, depressing the good year- to-date performance of most local market assets.

12 October. 2016 Monetary Policy Divergence Will Push EURUSD to 1.05 Soon (My Publications)

The euro's spectacular rise against the pound has been the key story in European FX markets recently. But the trade-weighted euro, however, is up "only" 6% year-to-date, as a result of the relatively stable EURUSD.

12 Oct. 2015 French Manufacturing Output Likely Fell in Q3 - Q4 will b e Better (My Publications)

French industrial production data offered a bit of relief last week following a string of woeful German data, and news of monthly falls in Italian and Spanish manufacturing output. Industrial production jumped 1.6% month-to-month in August, but the headline was flattered by a 0.3% downward revision of the July data. The monthly jump pushed the year-over-year rate higher to 1.6%, from a revised 0.9% fall in July. All sectors performed strongly in August, but the key story was a hefty increase in transport equipment manufacturing, due to a 11.9% surge in vehicle production.

12 Nov. 2015 US Fed is Set to Hike in December, A Worry For LatAm But not a Crisis (My Publications)

LatAm economies this year have faced a tough external environment of subdued commodity prices, weaker Chinese growth, the rising USD, and the impending Fed lift-off. At the domestic level, lower public spending, low confidence, and economic policy reform have clashed with above-target inflation, which has prevented central bankers from loosening monetary policy in order to mitigate the external and domestic headwinds. In these challenging circumstances, LatAm growth generally continues to disappoint, though performance is mixed.

12 Oct. 2015 Fed Minutes Bring Temporary Relief to Besieged LatAm Markets (My Publications)

In recent weeks LatAm's currencies and stock markets, together with key commodity prices, have risen as financial markets' expectations for a rate increase by the Fed this year have faded. The COP has risen 8.5% over the last month, the MXN is up 2.5%, the CLP has climbed 1.4% and the PEN has been practically stable against the USD. The minutes of the Federal Reserve's latest meeting added strength to this market's view, showing that policymakers postponed an interest rate hike as they worried about a global slowdown, particularly China, the strong USD and the impact of the drop in stock prices.

12 May 2017 Falling Inflation in Brazil Signals Rapid Rate Cuts Ahead (My Publications)

Brazil's April CPI data this week showed that inflation pressures remain weak, supporting the BCB's focus on the downside risks to economic activity. Wednesday's report revealed that the benchmark IPCA inflation index rose 0.1% unadjusted month-to-month in April, marginally below market expectations.

12 May 2017 Core CPI Inflation to Mean-Revert After the Shocking March Drop (My Publications)

The April CPI report today will be watched even more closely than usual, after the surprise 0.12% month-to-month fall in the March core index. The biggest single driver of the dip was a record 7.0% plunge in cellphone service plan prices, reflecting Verizon's decision to offer an unlimited data option.

12 July. 2016 Brazil and Argentina are Both Hurting, but Healing has Begun (My Publications)

Brazil and Argentina, South America's biggest economies are going through a metamorphosis. Brazil is emerging from its recession and a modest recovery is on the horizon. Exports have rebounded, thanks to the lagged effect of the BRL's sharp sell-off last year, and confidence has improved significantly in recent months. The likelihood that interim President Michel Temer will stay on as head of Brazil's government has also helped to boost sentiment.

12 July. 2016 Do Pricing Distortions Mean We Should Ignore Weak Help Wanted? (My Publications)

Judging from our inbox, economy bulls are pinning a great deal of hope on the idea that the collapse in the Help Wanted Online index is misleading, because the index is subject to distortions caused by shifts in pricing behavior in the online job advertising business. These distortions were analyzed in a recent Fed paper--click here to read on the Fed's website-- which makes a convincing case that at least some of the decline in the HWOL over the past half-year represents a change in recruiters' behavior rather than slowing in labor demand.

12 July. 2016 EZ Credit Markets Are Surging, But Equities Can't Keep Up (My Publications)

Eurozone capital markets have been split across the main asset classes this year. Equity investors have had a nightmare. The MSCI EU ex-UK index is down 10.6% year-to-date, a remarkably poor performance given additional QE from the ECB and stable GDP growth. Corporate bonds, on the other hand, are sizzling.

12 July 2017 Yellen Will Re-affirm Fed Policy. Expect no Revelations, or Dates (My Publications)

Chair Yellen has become quite good at not giving much away at her semi-annual Monetary Policy Testimony.

12 July 2017 Wage Growth Likely will Remain too "Anaemic" for the Governor this Year (My Publications)

Mark Carney emphasised in his Mansion House speech last month that he wants wage growth to "begin to firm" from recent "anaemic" rates before voting to raise interest rates.

12 July 2017 BoJ's Curve Targeting is More Stimulatory than Base Targeting (My Publications)

Japanese M2 growth increased trivially in June to 3.9% year-on-year from 3.8% in May, significantly higher than the 3.2% rate in August, before the BoJ began targeting the yield curve.

12 July 2017 Financial Conditions in the Eurozone are Tightening, Slowly (My Publications)

The debate about the ECB's policy trajectory is bifurcated at the moment. Markets are increasingly convinced that a rapidly strengthening economy will force the central bank to make a hawkish adjustment in its stance.

12 June 2017 Brazil's Inflation is in Check, but Politics are Paramount (My Publications)

Brazilian political risk remains high but, as we have argued in previous Monitors, it is unlikely to deter policymakers from further near-term monetary easing. The political crisis, however, does suggest that the COPOM will act cautiously, waiting until the latest storm passes before acting more aggressively, despite ongoing good news on the inflation front.

12 June 2017 Can Core PCE Inflation Overtake Core CPI Inflation? (My Publications)

For the past six years, the PCE measure of core inflation has undershot the CPI version. The average spread between the two year-over-year rates since January 2011 has been 0.3 percentage points, and as far as we can tell most observers expect it to be little changed for the foreseeable future.

12 Mar. 2015 Cheap Gas to Boost Spring Sales, but February Looks Soft (My Publications)

Sooner or later, the surge in consumers' spending power triggered by the drop in gas prices and the acceleration in payrolls will appear in the retail sales data.

12 Mar. 2015 Weak Euro to help manufacturers, but EM weakness is still a worry (My Publications)

Industrial production in the Eurozone was probably unchanged in January equivalent to a 0.2% fall year-over-year. This is slightly below the consensus for a 0.2% rise month-to-month, mainly due to the downside surprises in m/m data in Italy and Germany released previously.

12 June. 2015 Industrial Output is on Track for a New Post-Crisis High This Year (My Publications)

Eurozone manufacturing probably stalled at the start of the second quarter. We think industrial production rose a mere 0.1% month-to-month in April, lower than the 0.4% consensus forecast, and equivalent to a 0.8% increase year-over-year. Output ex-construction was up 0.8% in Germany, but this is likely to be offset by declines in France and Italy, and a hefty 3.2% fall in Greece.

12 June. 2015 Consumption Back on Track as the Winter Weather Hit Reverses (My Publications)

Consumers' spending in the second quarter is still set to be less than great, thanks in part to unfavorable base effects from the first quarter, but a respectable showing of about 2¾% now seems likely. The core May retail sales numbers were a bit stronger than we expected, with gains in most sectors, and the upward revisions to April and March were substantial.

12 June 2017 China's Policy Choices are all Difficult, can Disaster be Averted? (My Publications)

China faces three possible macro outcomes over the next few years. First, the economy could pull off an active transition to consumer-led growth. Second, it could gradually slide into Japan-style growth and inflation, with government debt spiralling up. Third, it could face a full blown debt crisis, where the authorities lose control and China drags the global economy down too

12 June. 2015 Brazil Inflation rises again, raising the risk of more BCB rate hikes (My Publications)

Brazil's benchmark inflation index, the IPCA, rose 0.7% month-to-month in May, above market expectations. The stickiness of some components explains the surprise upshift; food prices in particular rose by 1.4% in May, after a 1% increase in April. Housing also rose at a faster rate than we had expected, due mainly to a 2.8% jump in the electricity component, the largest single contributor to May's headline increase.

11 September 2017 The German Trade Surplus is Falling, but Real Wages are Rising (My Publications)

The seasonally adjusted trade surplus in Germany slipped to €19.6B in July, from €21.2B in June, its lowest since April, and we are confident that it has peaked for this cycle.

11 Sept. 2015 Falling Stock Set to Depress Consumers' Sentiment (My Publications)

People don't like to see the value of their portfolios decline, and it is just a matter of time before the benchmark measures of consumer sentiment drop in response to the 7% fall in the S&P since mid-August. Sometimes, movements in stock prices don't affect the sentiment numbers immediately, especially if the market moves gradually. But the drop in the market in August was rapid and dramatic, and gripped the national media.

11 Jan. 2016 Did German GDP Growth Slow Significantly in Q4? (My Publications)

Industrial production and trade data on Friday ended last week on a downbeat note, amid otherwise solid economic reports. In Germany, industrial output fell 0.3% month-to-month in November, pushing the year-over-year rate down to 0.1% from a revised 0.4% in October. The details, however, were better than the headline. Production was hit by a 3.3% plunge in capital goods output, offsetting gains in all other key sectors, and net revisions added 0.3% to the October data.

11 Jan. 2016 Payroll Growth Will Slow in Q1, But Wages Will Accelerate (My Publications)

Payroll growth will slow in the first few months of next year, but wages will accelerate. This might seem counter-intuitive after the ballistic December jobs number coupled with sluggish-looking hourly earnings, but the devil, as always, is in the details. On the face of it, the trend in payroll growth is accelerating at a startling pace, captured in our first chart. But we very much doubt this reflects a real shift in the underlying pace of employment growth, for two reasons. First, payroll growth in recent years has tended to accelerate in the fourth quarter, even when indicators of both labor demand and the pace of layoffs--the two sides of the payroll equation--have been flat, as in Q4.

11 Jan. 2016 Plunging Oil Prices Won't Distract the MPC as Inflation Rises (My Publications)

Investors have lowered once again their expectations for official interest rates and now do not anticipate any rate hikes this year. Markets appear to have judged that the plunge in oil prices will ensure that inflation is too low for the Monetary Policy Committee to tighten policy. Oil prices, however, are not the be-all and end-all for inflation or monetary policy, and we doubt they will distract the MPC from the continued firming of domestic price pressures this year.

11 Jan. 2016 Brazil's Inflation Hits a 13-Year High - Copom Will Hike Again (My Publications)

Last week's events highlighted the seriously challenging global environment for LatAm equities and currencies. Trading in Chinese shares was stopped twice early last week, after falls greater than 7% of the CSI 300 index reverberated around the world. Markets were calmer on Friday but the volatility nevertheless reminded investors that LatAm's economies are floating in rough waters and their resilience will be put to the test again this year. The Fed's policy normalization, the unwinding of the leverage in EM, the continued slowdown of the Chinese economy, low commodity prices and currency depreciation are all real threats across the continent.

11 Feb. 2016 More Equity-Raising Ahead in the Eurozone Banking Sector (My Publications)

Fears over a Eurozone banking crisis have compounded market volatility recently, and sent bank equities into a tailspin. Deutsche Bank has been the focus of the attention, probably due to its systemic importance and opaque balance sheet. DB's stock price is down a staggering 38% year-to-date, and earlier this week, the German finance minister had to assure markets that he has no worries about the bank's position.

11 Feb. 2016 March is Still in Play, but Only if Data and Markets Cooperate (My Publications)

If Fed Chair Yellen's objective yesterday was to deliver studied ambiguity in her Testimony--and we believe it was--she succeeded. She offered plenty to both sides of the rate debate. For the hawks, she noted that unemployment is now "...in line with the median of FOMC participants' most recent estimates of its longer-run normal level", and that inflation is still expected to return to the 2% target, "...once oil and import prices stop falling".

11 Feb. 2016 Markets Still Underestimate the Looming Pick-Up in Inflation (My Publications)

Markets' inflation expectations have fallen in recent weeks, maintaining the trend seen over the previous 18 months. The fall in expectations for the next year or so is justified by the sharp fall in oil prices. But expectations for inflation further ahead have drifted down too, even though lower oil prices will have no effect on the annual comparison of prices beyond a year or so from now.

11 January 2017 Black Friday Drove Sales Higher in Brazil, is a Hangover Coming? (My Publications)

Brazil's consumer recession finally eased in November. Retail sales jumped 2.0% month-to- month, following an upwardly-revised 0.3% drop in October, and the year-over-year rate rose to -3.5% from -8.1%. November's astonishing performance probably reflects seasonal adjustment problems related to Black Friday discounting. Sales have climbed in the last four Novembers, suggesting that consumers' pre-Christmas spending patterns have shifted permanently.

11 January 2017 France Joins Germany in Picking up Momentum at the End of 2016 (My Publications)

Another day, another solid economic report in the Eurozone. Data yesterday showed that industrial production in France jumped 2.2% month-to-month in November, pushing the year-over-year rate up to +1.8%, from -1.8% in October. The 2.3% jump in manufacturing output was the key story, offsetting a 0.3% decline in construction activity. Production of food and beverages rebounded from weakness in October, and oil refining also accelerated.

11 July 2017 Strong Import Growth is Starting to Weigh on German Trade Surplus (My Publications)

The German trade surplus increased slightly in May, following weakness in the beginning of spring. The seasonally adjusted surplus rose to €20.3B in May, from €19.7B in April; it was lifted by a 1.4% month-to-month jump in exports, which offset a 1.2% rise imports.

11 July 2017 Unemployment Likely Fell Again in May, Despite the Slowing Economy (My Publications)

May's labour market figures, released on Wednesday, likely will have something for both the doves and the hawks on the MPC , who have been wrangling over whether to reverse last year's rate cut.

11 July 2017 Small Businesses are Still Optimistic, but a Correction is Due (My Publications)

Before last November's election, movements in the headline NFIB index of activity and sentiment among small businesses could be predicted quite reliably from shifts in the key labor market components, which are released in advance of the main survey.

11 July 2017 Political Risk Return this Week in Brazil, but a Catastrophe is Unlikely (My Publications)

Political risks in Brazil recently have simmered alongside the modest cyclical recovery, but they are now increasing. President Michel Temer's future remains hard to predict as circumstances change by the day.

11 January 2017 Import Substitution Will Be Modest, Despite Sterling's Depreciation (My Publications)

A year has now elapsed since sterling began its precipitous descent, and the trade data still have not improved. Net trade subtracted 0.9 percentage points from year-over-year growth in GDP in Q3. And while the trade deficit of £2.0B in October was the smallest since May, this followed extraordinarily large deficits in the previous two months. In fact, the trade deficit has been on a slightly deteriorating trend over the last year, as our first chart shows, and we expect today's data to show that the deficit re-widened to about £3.5B in November.

11 January 2017 Slowdown in C&I Loan Growth Worrisome? (My Publications)

On the face of it, the slowdown in bank loan growth to commercial and industrial companies over the past two years looks alarming. In the year to November, the stock of loans outstanding rose by 8.0%, the smallest gain since January 2014. A further decline in the year-over-year rate, taking it below the rate of growth of nominal GDP--we expect 4.7% in the first quarter--for the first time in six years, is now a fair bet. The three- and six-month annualized growth rates of C&I lending in November were just 6.2% and 4.7% respectively, and still falling.

11 Feb. 2015 Will private investments in France ever pick up? (My Publications)

The French industrial sector ended last year on an upbeat note, but the underlying trend in activity is still weak. Industrial production rose 1.5% month-to-month in December, equivalent to a 0.1% fall year-over-year.

11 Feb. 2015 Soaring Job Openings Suggest Super-Easy Money is Now Risky (My Publications)

Back in April 2012, Janet Yellen--then Fed Vice-Chair--spoke in detail about the labor market and monetary policy. The key point of her labor market analysis was that it was impossible to know for sure how much of the increase in unemployment--at the time, the headline rate was 8.2%--was structural, and how much was cyclical.

11 August 2017 Brazil's Inflation Rate is Falling, Mexico's Will Soon Follow (My Publications)

Inflation pressures in Brazil are now well- contained, with the headline rate falling to a decade low in July. We think inflation is now close to bottoming out, but the current benign rate strengthens our base case forecast for a 100bp rate cut at the next policy meeting, in September.

11 August 2017 Core CPI Looks Set to Revert to 0.2% in July, but Nothing is Certain (My Publications)

Our base case forecast for today's July core CPI is that the remarkable and unexpected run of weak numbers, shown in our first chart, is set to come to an end, with a reversion to the prior 0.2% trend.

11 August 2017 Commodities Driving Japan's PPI, a Weaker Yen is Needed to Lift CPI (My Publications)

Japanese PPI inflation rose sharply to 2.6% in July from 2.2% in June, well above the consensus for a modest rise.

11 April 2017 Why are Small Firms' Capex Plans so Soft even as Sentiment Soars? (My Publications)

Nowhere is the gap between sentiment and activity wider than in the NFIB survey of small businesses. The economic expectations component leaped by an astonishing 57 points between October and December, but the capex intentions index rose by only two points over the same period, and it has since slipped back. In February, the capex intentions index stood at 26, compared to an average of 27.3 in the three months to October.

11 April 2017 Markets Still aren't Fully Prepared for a Further Rise in RPI Inflation (My Publications)

Investors have been caught out by the speed of the recent rise in RPI inflation and have revised up their expectations. Even so, inflation swaps imply that markets expect RPI inflation to be 3.6% in one year's time, not much above the latest print, 3.2% in February. We still think RPI inflation will exceed markets' expectations.

11 Apr. Slowly but Surely, Inflation is Creeping Back Towards its Target (My Publications)

Consumer price figures for March, released on Tuesday, likely will show that CPI inflation has taken another step up, probably to 0.4% from 0.3% in February. This should jettison lingering fears that the U.K. is mired in deflation and bolster the Monetary Policy Committee's conviction that inflation will hit the 2% target within the next two years.

11 April 2017 Divergent Inflation Trends in the Andes, Will Policymakers Act Soon? (My Publications)

Inflation is falling quickly in Colombia, despite the VAT increase in Q1, so we expect more BanRep rate cuts over the next few months. Consumer prices rose 0.5% month-to-month unadjusted in March, pushing the inflation rate down to 4.7% year-over-year, from 5.2% in February. This is the lowest rate in almost two years, thanks to a favourable base effect and fading pressures from food prices.

11 August. 2015 Q2 Productivity Likely Constrained by a Surge in Self-Employment (My Publications)

The rebound in GDP growth in the second quarter seems not to have been enough to prevent year-over-year productivity growth slowing to about zero. The consensus forecast for the first estimate of Q2 productivity growth, due today, is a 1.6% annualized increase, pushing the year-over-year rate down to 0.3% from 0.6% in the first quarter, but we think this is too optimistic.

11 August. 2016 Household Spending Will Not Defy Gravity For Long Surveys (My Publications)

Recent retail surveys have indicated that consumers are not suffering yet from Brexit blues. The BRC reported that year-over-year growth in total sales values picked up to 1.9% in July, from 0.2% in June. After adjusting for falling prices, this measure suggests that year-over-year growth in official retail sales volumes held steady at about 4% last month.

11 Dec. 2015 Upturn in French Industrial Output is Misleading and Won't Last (My Publications)

October industrial production data in France surprised to the upside yesterday, with headline output rising 0.5% month-to-month, well above the consensus estimate and our own forecast for a monthly fall. Production was lifted by a 5.1% month-to-month jump in energy output, due to unusually cold weather, offsetting a 0.5% decline in manufacturing output, the fifth drop in the past six months.

11 Feb. 2015 Chile's Outlook Improving Slowly - Oil Price are a Clear Tailwind (My Publications)

The resilience and adaptability that the Chilean economy has shown over previous cycles has been tested repeatedly over the last year. Uncertainty on the political front, falling metal prices, and growing concerns about growth in China have been the key factors behind expectations of slowing GDP growth.

11 Dec. 2015 The MPC is Independent, But it Cannot Ignore Other Central Banks (My Publications)

The MPC's asserted its independence in the minutes of December's meeting, firmly stating that there is "no mechanical link between UK policy and those of other central banks". Markets have interpreted this as supporting their view that the MPC won't be rushed into raising interest rates by the Fed's actions. Investors now expect a nine-month gap between the Fed hike we anticipate next week, and the first move in the U.K.

11 Dec. 2015 Don't be Swayed by Soft Nominal Retail Sales (My Publications)

Retail sales ex-autos have undershot consensus forecasts in eight of the 11 reports released so far this year, prompting interest rate doves to argue that consumers have not spent their windfall from falling gas prices. But this ignores the impact of falling prices--for gasoline, electronics, furniture, and clothing--on the sales numbers, which are presented in nominal terms.

11 August. 2016 Mortgage Demand is Faltering, Will it Rebound Soon? (My Publications)

The medium-term trend in the volume of mortgage applications turned up in early 2015, but progress has not been smooth. The trend in the MBA's purchase applications index has risen by about 40% from its late 2014 low, but the increase has been characterized by short bursts of rapid gains followed by periods of stability.

11 Dec. 2015 Brazil's Economic Woes Deepen as Inflation Hits a 12-Year High (My Publications)

Brazil's inflation rate is in double digits for the first time in 12 years. The benchmark IPCA price index rose 1.0% month-to-month in November, lifting the year-over-year rate to 10.5%, the highest since November 2003. The core IPCA increased 0.7% month-to-month, pushing the year-over-year rate in November up to 8.9% from 8.6% in October.

11 July. 2016 Jobs Overstate Economic Volatility, Wages Will Soon Matter More (My Publications)

Whatever you might think about the state of the U.S. economy, it is not as volatile as implied by the past few months' payroll numbers. Assuming steady productivity growth in line with the recent trend, the payroll data suggest the economy swung from bust to boom in one month, with not even a pause for breath.

11 July. 2016 Lower Inflation in Brazil and Fiscal Tightening Point to Q4 Easing (My Publications)

The latest IPCA inflation data in Brazil show the year-over-year rate fell to 8.8% in June from 9.3% in May. This is the slowest pace since May 2015, with inflation pulled lower by declines across all major components, except food. Indeed, food prices were the main driver of the modest 0.4% unadjusted monthto-month increase, rising by 0.7%, following a 0.8% jump in May. The year-over-year rate rose to 12.8% in June from 12.4%.

11 Nov. 2015 Strong Finish to Q3 for French Manufacturing to Boost GDP? (My Publications)

French industrial production data surprised to the upside yesterday. Output rose 0.1% month-to-month in September, a solid gain following an upwardly-revised 1.7% rise in August, and also higher than the consensus, forecast for a 0.4% fall. The details, however, were less upbeat than the headline. Transport equipment fell, as expected, following production being pushed forward ahead of the Summer holidays. But this story was overshadowed by a 22.5% month-to-month jump in oil refining-- included in manufacturing--as refineries resumed full production following maintenance over the summer.

11 Nov. 2015 The Revival in North Sea Oil Production Won't Last (My Publications)

The large unexpected surge in oil and gas output this year has boosted the overall economic recovery significantly. But this looks like the last hurrah for a sector of the U.K. economy in terminal decline.

11 November. 2016 French Industrial Output Weak in Q3, Likely Better in Q4 (My Publications)

Yesterday's French industrial production data were worse than we expected. Output slipped 1.1% month-to-month in September, pushing the year-over-year rate down to -1.1% from a revised +0.4% in August. Mean-reversion was a big driver of the poor headline, given the upwardly-revised 2.4% jump in August.

11 Nov. 2015 Mexico Relying on the Fed - Chile Looking for China's Recovery (My Publications)

Mexico's inflation remains the envy of LatAm, having consistently outperformed the rest of the region this year. Headline inflation slowed marginally to 2.5% in October, a record low and below the middle of Banxico's target, 2-to-4%, for the sixth straight month. The annual core rate increased marginally to 2.5% in October from 2.4% in September, but it remains below the target and its underlying trend is inching up only at a very slow pace. We expect it to remain subdued, closing the year around 2.7% year-over-year. Next year it will gradually increase, but will stay below 3.5% during the first half of 2016, given the lack of demand pressures and the ample output gap.

11 May. Will March Industrial Production Break the Run of Bad News? (My Publications)

The popular belief that economists rarely agree about anything is reinforced by the extremely wide dispersion of forecasts for March industrial production. The forecasts range from the wildly optimistic prediction of a 1.9% month-to-month rise, to a downright miserable 0.3% decline. We think production rose by about 0.5% month-to-month, and this likely will be interpreted as a decent result, following the recent run of bad news.

11 May. 2016 Inflation Pressures Easing in LatAm Following FX Appreciation (My Publications)

Mexican inflation pressures eased towards the start of Q2. Inflation fell to 2.5% year-over-year in April from 2.6% in March, due to a sharp fall in energy inflation--as a result of the introduction of new electricity tariffs in the warm season--and a fall in the rate of increase of fresh food prices. Depressed energy prices will continue to constrain inflation in coming months, but base effects will reduce the drag later this year.

11 May. 2016 Outside the Oil Sector, the NFIB Survey Points to Decent Capex (My Publications)

We're pretty sure our forecast of a levelling-off in capital spending in the oil sector will prove correct. Unless you think the U.S. oil business is going to disappear, capex has fallen so far already that it must now be approaching the incompressible minimum required for replacement parts and equipment needed to keep production going.

11 November. 2016 Eyes of Hurricanes Pass, then the Real Uproar Begins (My Publications)

Uncertainty about the U.S. economic and political outlook, following Donald Trump's presidential win, likely will cast a long shadow over EM in general and LatAm in particular. On the campaign trail, Mr. Trump argued for tearing up NAFTA and building a border wall.

11 November. 2016 Will the Housing Market Recovery Hit Affordability Buffers? (My Publications)

After wobbling immediately after the referendum, house prices appear to be back on a rising trajectory. The Halifax measure of house prices, which is based on the lenders' mortgage offers, rose by 1.4% month-to-month in October, following a 0.3% increase in September.

11 Sept. 2015 Brazil's Cut to Junk Deepens Its Economic And Financial Woes (My Publications)

This year, Brazil has been the perfect example of all the problems faced by EM countries over the last few decades. A long and deep recession, high inflation, fiscal crisis, political chaos, a commodity price crunch, sharp currency depreciation and lack of confidence have all worked together to hammer the economy and investor confidence. These factors all contributed to S&P downgrading Brazil to junk status on Wednesday.

11 Sept. 2015 Deflation Worry Dominates, but Inflation Could Hurt Bonds in Q4 (My Publications)

Final data today will likely confirm that German inflation was unchanged at 0.2% year-over-year in August. The increased drag from falling energy prices was likely offset by higher food prices, mostly fresh vegetables. Core inflation was likely stable at 0.9% year-over-year, with a marginal rise in consumer services inflation offset by a fall in net rent. Rents could fall further this year due to the implementation of caps in major cities, but we s till only have little evidence on how individual states will implement the new legislation.

11 October. 2016 Unemployment has Stopped Falling, For Now (My Publications)

The single most startling development in the labor market data in recent months is acceleration in labor force growth. The participation rate has risen only marginally, because employment has continued to climb too, but the absolute size of the labor force is now expanding at its fastest pace in nine years, up 1.9% in the year to September.

11 October. 2016 Conditions Are Set for the BCB to Start Easing Next Week (My Publications)

The latest CPI data in Brazil confirm that inflationary pressures eased considerably last month. Inflation fell to 8.5% year-over-year in September, from 9.0% in August, as a result of both lower market- set and regulated inflation.

11 October. 2016 German Exports Came Roaring Back in August, After a Weak July (My Publications)

Yesterday's German trade data showed that the external surplus recovered in August, following its poor start to Q3. The seasonally-adjusted trade surplus rose to €22.2B, from €19.4B in July.

11 October. 2016 The MPC Won't Ignore Inflation This Time (My Publications)

If sustained, sterling's recent depreciation looks set to drive CPI inflation up to about 3.5% by the end of next year.

11 May. 2016 German GDP Growth Likely Rose Strongly in the First Quarter (My Publications)

Yesterday's industrial production data in Germany were downbeat. Output fell 1.3% month-to-month in March, pushing the year-over-over rate down to 0.3%, from 2.0% in February. Production was held back by weakness in manufacturing and a plunge in construction, Meanwhile, energy output rebounded slightly following last month's fall. Over Q1 as a whole, though, the industrial sector performed strongly.

11 May. 2015 Payrolls were OK, but May Should be Much Better (My Publications)

In the wake of the soft-looking ADP employment report released on Wednesday, the true consensus for today's official payroll number likely is lower than the 230K reported in the Bloomberg survey. As we argued in the Monitor yesterday, though, we view ADP as a lagging indicator and we don't use it is as a forecasting tool.

11 Mar. 2015 Eurozone GDP growth on track for strong Q1 (My Publications)

The latest evidence of firming economic momentum comes from France, where industrial production rose 0.4% month-to-month in January, equivalent to a 0.6% increase year-over-year. Combined with strong consumer spending data in January, this points to a solid first quarter for the French economy.

11 Mar. 2015 Fed Rate Hike Fears Now the Key Worry For LatAm Central Banks (My Publications)

Inflation appears no longer to be an issue for Mexican policymakers. The annual headline rate slowed to 3.0% year-over-year in February from 3.1% in January, in the middle of the central bank's target range, for the first time since May 2006.

11 Mar. 2016 Brace for Volatility in the Trade Data as Oil Prices Swing (My Publications)

If Brent oil prices remain at their current $41 through the end of the second quarter--a big ask, we know, but you have to start with something--the average price of petroleum products imported into the U.S. will rise at an annualized rate of about 70% from their first quarter level.

11 Mar. 2015 Can the Uptick in New Home Sales be Sustained? (My Publications)

In three of the past four months, new home sales have been reported above the 460K top of the range in place since early 2013. Sales dipped below this mark in November, when the weather across the country as a whole was exceptionally cold, relative to normal.

11 June. 2015 Fall in Energy Output Will Weigh on French GDP growth in Q2 (My Publications)

Swings in energy output continue to add volatility to French manufacturing data. Industrial production fell 0.9% month-to-month in April, equivalent to a 0.1% fall year-over-year. This was a weak report, even if we factor in the 0.3% upward revision to the March numbers,but it was also he avily tainted by a 10.8% month-to-month collapse in oil refining.

11 July. 2016 Net Exports Boosted German GDP Growth in Q2, as Imports Fell (My Publications)

The German trade data on Friday completed a poor week for economic reports in the Eurozone's largest economy. The seasonally adjusted trade surplus fell to €22.1B in May, from €24.1B in April, mainly due to a 1.8% month-to-month fall in exports. Imports, on the other hand, were little changed.

11 June. 2015 Autos Will Lift May Retail Sales - Core a Mystery as Redbook Drops (My Publications)

We can be reasonably sure that the headline May retail sales number will look quite strong, thanks to the surge in auto sales reported by the manufacturers last week. Sales of cars and light trucks soared past industry analysts' expectations to a nine-year high, rising 7.5% from their April level.

11 Mar. 2016 Don't Hold Your Breath for a Budget Surplus (My Publications)

Chancellor George Osborne has invested considerable personal capital in attaining a budget surplus by the end of this parliament, and he has passed a 'law' to ensure he and his successors achieve this goal. But the current fiscal plans, which will be reviewed in the Budget on March 16, make a series of optimistic assumptions on future tax revenues and spending savings.

11 Mar. 2016 Inflation in Brazil Starts to Slow - Better Odds for Rate Cuts in H2 (My Publications)

Brazil's headline CPI has been well above the upper limit of the BCB's target zone since January 2015. We expect this situation will continue for some time, due to the lagged effect of last year's sharp increases in regulated prices, El Niño, the BRL's sell-off in 2015, and, especially, widespread price indexation.

11 May. 2015 Mexico's Inflationary Pressures Subdued - On Target This Year (My Publications)

Mexico is the only major LatAm economy not struggling with inflation. The headline April CPI fell 0.3% month-to-month, with the year-over-year rate unchanged at 3.1%, in the middle o f Banxico's 2-to-4% target. Inflationary pressures have been broadly absent since the beginning of the year, with the annual core CPI rate slowing to 2.3% in April from 2.5% in March.

11 May. 2015 Net Trade Signals Slight Downside Risk for German Q1 GDP (My Publications)

March data for retail sales and manufacturing have tempered our optimism for the advance Q1 GDP estimate in Germany next week. Industrial production fell 0.5% month-to-month in March, equivalent to a mere 0.1% increase year-over-year, mainly as a result of weakness in core manufacturing activities.

11 May 2017 Will the Inflation Report Waken the Gilt Market from its Slumber? (My Publications)

Gilt yields have been remarkably stable following their decline in response to the Bank of England's Inflation Report in February. The average 60-day price volatility of gilts with outstanding maturities of greater than one year has fallen back recently to lows last seen in 2014, as our first chart shows.

11 May 2017 Core PPI Inflation is set to Rise Further, CPI Components to Follow? (My Publications)

Today brings the April PPI data, which likely will show core inflation creeping higher, with upward pressure in both good and services. The upside risk in the goods component is clear enough, as our first chart shows.

11 Mar. 2016 Significant Easing by the ECB Despite Markets' Initial Dissent (My Publications)

The ECB atoned for its "mistake" in December yesterday by delivering a new easing package that significantly beat markets' expectations. The central bank cut its main refi and marginal lending facility rates by 0.05 percentage points, to 0.00% and 0.25% respectively.

11 May 2017 A Poor Q1 for French Industrial Production, but Q2 will be Better (My Publications)

French manufacturing came roaring back at the end of Q1. Industrial production jumped 2.0% month-to- month in March, driving the year-over-year rate higher to +2.0%, from a revised -0.7% in February.

12 October. 2016 How Hard Did FOMC Dissenters Push to Hike?  (My Publications)

Today's FOMC minutes will add flesh to the bones of the three dissents on September 21. The FOMC statement merely said that each of the three--Loretta Mester, Esther George and Eric Rosengren--preferred to raise rates by a quarter-point.

12 September 2016 Will the MPC Stand By its Rate Cut Guidance this Week? (My Publications)

The Monetary Policy Committee likely will not follow up August's stimulus measures with another rate cut at its meeting on Thursday. The partial revival in surveys of activity and confidence have weakened the case for immediate action.

14 Apr. 2016 The Eurozone's Manufacturing Outperformance Likely Won't Last (My Publications)

Industrial production in the euro area dipped in February. Output fell 0.8% month-to-month pushing the year-over-year rate down to 0.8% from a revised 2.9% in January. This indicates that Eurozone manufacturing continues to lag the pace seen in previous business cycle upturns.

14 August 2017 A Great First Half of 2017 for the EZ Economy, But it Won't Last (My Publications)

While we were away, the advance Q2 GDP report in the Eurozone confirmed our expectations of a strong first half of the year for the economy. Real GDP rose 0.6% quarter-on-quarter, the same pace as in Q1, lifting the year-over-year rate to a cyclical high of 2.1%.

14 August 2017 China's Slowdown Surprised Japan, Inventories to Boost Q2 GDP (My Publications)

Japanese domestic demand probably strengthened in Q2, with both private consumption and fixed investment accelerating. Trade and inventories are the key swing components for GDP growth.

14 Apr. 2016 Core CPI Inflation is Trending Higher, but Expect a March Pause (My Publications)

Since January 2015, Core CPI inflation has risen to 2.3% from 1.6%, propelled by a combination of accelerating rents, a substantial rebound in the rate of increase of healthcare costs, and a modest-- though unexpected--upturn in core goods prices. It's always risky, though, simply to extrapolate recent trends and assume you now have a clear guide to the future.

14 Apr. 2015 The Eurozone is on track for strongest growth since Q1 2011 (My Publications)

Eurozone industrial production data today will confirm that economic growth likely accelerated in the first quarter. We think output rose 0.7% month-to-month in February, equivalent to a 0.8% increase year-over-year.

13 September. 2016 Will the NFIB Survey Point to Stronger Non-mining Capex? (My Publications)

The key labor market numbers from today's August NFIB survey of small businesses have already been released--they appear a day or two before the employment report--but they will be reported as though they are news. The headline hiring intentions reading dipped to nine from 12, leaving it near the bottom of the range of the past couple of years.

14 Apr. 2015 Autos, Gas to boost March retail sales - Core is a wildcard (My Publications)

The run of soft-looking headline retail sales numbers in recent months--the initial estimates for February, January and December were -0.6%, -0.8% and -0.9% respectively--will end today; the March number will look solid.

14 August 2017 July's Soft-Looking Core CPI was Different from Previous Weak Data (My Publications)

July's fifth straight undershoot to consensus in the core CPI was very different the previous four. Only one component--lodging away from home--prevented the first 0.2% month-to-month print since February.

14 August 2017 Peru's Central Bank Holds Rates but Points to Further Stimulus (My Publications)

Peru's central bank left its policy interest rate unchanged at 3.75% last week, but signalled that further easing is on the way. According to the press release accompanying the decision, policymakers noted that inflation expectations are within their target range and still falling.

14 Dec. 2015 Peru's Central Bank Tightens Again to Contain Inflation Pressures (My Publications)

Peru's central bank, the BCRP, admitted defeat again in the face of the inflationary effects of the PEN's depreciation and El Niño, increasing interest rates by 25bp to 3.75% last Thursday, following its 25bp increase in September. Peru is the third LatAm economy in the last few months to raise rates in response to currency weakness, despite sluggish economic growth. The key problem for Peru is that inflation has been trending higher since early 2013 and has remained stubbornly high, above 2.8% all this year. "Temporary" factors just keep on coming.

14 Dec. 2015 What Will Happen to the Dots After the Fed Raises Rates? (My Publications)

We have no argument with the consensus view that the language accompanying Wednesday's rate hike will be emollient. The FOMC likely will point out that the policy stance remains very accommodative, and seek to reinforce the idea that it intends to raise rates slowly. That said, recent FOMC statements have not offered any specific guidance on the pace of tightening, saying instead that the Fed "...will take a balanced approach consistent with its longer-run goals... even after employment and inflation are near mandate-consistent levels, economic conditions may, for some time, warrant keeping the target federal funds rate below levels the Committee views as normal in the longer run."

14 December 2016 Brazil Consumption Under Strain in Early Q4, but it Will Improve, Soon (My Publications)

Brazil's consumer recession seems never-ending. Retail sales fell 0.8% month-to-month in October, pushing the headline year-over-year rate down to -8.2% in October, from -5.7% in September. Recent financial market volatility, credit restrictions and the ongoing deterioration of the labour market continue to hurt consumers.

14 Dec. 2015 November Data Will Mark the First Step in Inflation's Long March Up (My Publications)

November's consumer prices figures, released tomorrow, look set to show that the U.K.'s spell of negative inflation has ended. CPI inflation is set to pick-up decisively over the coming months, even if oil prices continue to drift down. In fact, fuel prices likely will contribute to the pick-up in inflation from October's -0.1% rate. November's 1.5% fall in prices at the pump was smaller than the 2.3% drop in the same month last year, so the year-over-year rate will rise. Fuel's contribution to CPI inflation therefore will pick up, albeit very marginally, to -0.47pp from -0.50pp in October.

14 Dec. 2015 Can Eurozone Equities Withstand Global Headwinds Next Year? (My Publications)

Barring a gigantic shock from the Fed this week--we expect a 25bp hike--Eurozone equities will end the year with a solid return for investors, who have been overweight. Total return of the MSCI EU ex-UK should come in around 10%, which compares to a likely flat return for the MSCI World, reflecting the boost from the ECB's QE driving out performance. Our first chart shows the index has been mainly lifted by consumer sector, healthcare and IT stocks, comfortably making up for weakness in materials and energy. The year has been a story of two halves, however, and global headwinds have intensified since the summer, partly offsetting the surge in the Q1 as markets celebrated the arrival of QE and negative interest rates.

14 August. 2015 Brazil's Weakness Remains - And Mexico Still Eyeing the Fed (My Publications)

The macro data reported in Brazil this week added weight to the view that the economy ended the second quarter in a severe recession. Brazil's retail sales fell 0.4% month-to-month in June, the fifth consecutive contraction. The broad retail index, which includes vehicles and construction materials, fell 0.8% month-to-month, with a sharp contraction in auto sales, down 2.8%.

14 August. 2015 Robust Real Spending Signals Consumers aren't Saving More (My Publications)

The robust July retail sales numbers, coupled with the substantial upward revisions to prior data, should finally put to bed the idea that consumers have chosen spontaneously to raise their saving rate, accelerating the pace of deleveraging seven years after the financial crash. People just don't behave like that unless interest rates are soaring and the economy is rolling over, and that's not happening.

13 September. 2016 Manufacturing is Improving in Mexico, Other Sectors Weaker (My Publications)

Economic growth in Mexico will remain relatively modest over the second half of the year, and the outlook for 2017 remains cloudy, for now. The core fundamentals suggest that growth will increase, but we think that depressed mining output and fiscal tightening might limit the pace of the upturn.

13 September. 2016 Are Markets Pricing in a "Reverse" Operation Twist at the ECB? (My Publications)

Investors are busily fitting narratives to the sudden reversal in global bond markets. We think a correction was long overdue, but a combination of three factors provides a plausible rationale for the rout, from an EZ perspective.

13 Oct. 2015 Construction to Push Up EZ GDP Growth in Coming Quarters? (My Publications)

Households remain the key driver of the cyclical recovery in the Eurozone. We have seen, so far, little sign that investment will be able convincingly to take over the baton if momentum in consumers' spending slows. The average rate of growth of investment since 2013 has been 0.5%, about two-thirds of the pace seen in previous cyclical upturns. Weakness in construction--about 50% of total euro area investment--has been one of the key factors behind of the under performance.

13 Oct. 2015 Could Higher Rates Really "Spur" Faster Economic Growth? (My Publications)

What should we make of the view of Fed hawks, set out with admirable clarity in the September FOMC minutes, that higher rates "might spur rather than restrain economic activity"? The core story behind this counter-intuitive proposal is the idea that zero rates send a signal to the private sector that the Fed is deeply worried about the state of the economy.

13 October. 2016 EZ Industrial Production Rebounded Only Modestly in Q3 (My Publications)

Yesterday EZ industrial production report confirmed the message from advance country data that manufacturing rebounded towards the end of summer. Output, ex-construction, jumped 1.6% month-to-month in August, and the July data were revised up by 0.4 percentage points.

13 Nov. 2015 Will the Drag on the Recovery From Construction Fade? (My Publications)

The underlying health of the construction sector isn't as poor as today's official output figures likely will imply. Nonetheless, growth in construction output, which accounts for 6% of GDP, probably won't return to the stellar rates seen in 2013 and 2014, and the sector can't be relied upon to provide much support to overall growth.

13 Nov. 2015 Soft Q3 GDP Data to Pave the Way for More Monetary Easing (My Publications)

Industrial production data yesterday confirmed downside risks to today's GDP data in the Eurozone. Output fell 0.3% month-to-month in September, pushing the year-over-year rate down to 1.7% from a revised 2.2% in August. Weakness in Germany was the main culprit, amid stronger data in the other major economies. A GDP estimate based on available data for industrial production and retail sales point to a quarterly growth rate of 0.4% quarter-on-quarter, but we think growth was rather lower, just 0.2%, due to a drag from net trade.

13 Nov. 2015 Mexican Domestic Industrial Sectors Offset External Headwinds (My Publications)

Mexican manufacturing data continue to offer a counterweight to strong consumers' spending and services numbers. Output in the key manufacturing sector contracted by 0.2% month-to-month in September, due mainly to severe external headwinds. But the year-over-year rate was unchanged at 3.3%, with a flat underlying trend. Total industrial output, by contrast, rose 0.4% month-to-month in September, pushing the year-over-year rate up to 1.7%, from an upwardly-revised 1.1% gain in August.

13 Nov. 2015 Retail Sales Data are Misleading When Goods Prices Fall (My Publications)

Retail sales account for some 30% of GDP--more than all business investment and government spending combined--so the monthly numbers directly capture more of the economy than any other indicator. Translating the monthly sales numbers into real GDP growth is not straightforward, though, because the sales numbers are nominal. Sales have been hugely depressed over the past year by the plunging price of gasoline and, to a lesser extent, declines in prices of imported consumer goods.

13 October. 2016 The Chancellor Won't Set Fiscal Policy to Boost Growth Next Year (My Publications)

Many commentators have assumed that the new Chancellor's pledge to "reset" fiscal policy and to stop targeting a budget surplus in this parliament means that fiscal policy will support growth in economic activity next year.

13 October. 2016 The FOMC is Profoundly Split (My Publications)

It would not be fair to describe the FOMC as gridlocked, because that would imply no clear way out of the current position. Members' views of the risks to the economy, the state of the labor market, and the degree of inflation risk are all over the map, and the chance of a broad consensus emerging any time soon is slim.

13 September 2017 Labour Market Report to Show no Easing of the Real Wage Squeeze (My Publications)

Today's labour market report likely will show that employment continued to grow briskly over the summer, but that wage gains still are lagging well behind inflation.

13 September 2017 The French Labour Market is on the Up. Will Reforms Follow? (My Publications)

In theory, the headline labour market data in France should be a source of comfort and support for the new government.

13 September 2017 Korean Borrowing Begins to Recover, but the Fed isn't Done yet (My Publications)

Korean credit markets have begun tentatively to recover after the rise in global interest rates at the end of last year.

13 September 2017 Hurricane Reconstruction and Clean-up will Lift PPI, but not Yet (My Publications)

The surge in gasoline prices triggered by refinery outages after Hurricane Harvey came much too late to push up the August PPI, but gas prices had risen before the storm so the headline PPI will be stronger than the core.

13 September 2016 Sterling is Already Stoking Price Pressures, More to Come (My Publications)

August's consumer price figures, released today, likely will show that households' spending power is being increasingly eroded by rising inflation. We think CPI inflation picked up to 0.8%, from 0.6% in July, exceeding the consensus, 0.7%, for the third consecutive month.

13 September 2017 Brazilian Consumers' Spending set to Keep Rising Steadily (My Publications)

Data released yesterday in Brazil are consistent with our view that private consumption will continue to drive the recovery over the second half, offsetting the ongoing weakness in private investment.

14 December 2016 German and Eurozone Inflation is About to Shoot Higher (My Publications)

German inflation pressures were unchanged last month. The CPI index rose 0.8% year-over-year, matching the increase in October, and in line with the consensus and initial estimate. Energy deflation intensified marginally, as a result of lower prices for household utilities.

14 December 2016 Labour Data Set to Show a Clearer Deteriorating Trend (My Publications)

Today's labour market figures likely will bring further signs that firms are recruiting more cautiously and limiting pay awards, due to still-elevated economic uncertainty.

14 June 2017 Fed to Stick to One More 2017 Hike After Today, and Three More in 2018 (My Publications)

The Fed will hike by 25 basis points today, but what really matters is what they say about the future, both in the language of the statement and in the dotplot for this year and next.

14 June 2017 Korean Growth Probably Peaked in Q1. Construction to Slow (My Publications)

Construction accounted for the entire 1.1% quarter-to- quarter expansion of the Korean economy in Q1, but the sector is now set to slow.

14 June 2017 Retail Sales Show Brazil's Gradual Consumer Recovery Continues (My Publications)

Evidence of a modest upturn in Brazilian consumers' spending continues to mount. Retail sales rose 1.0% month-to-month in April, pushing the year-over-rate up to +1.9%, from an upwardly-revised -3.2% in March.

14 June 2017 Fact-checking the ECB on Low Wages and Employment in the EZ (My Publications)

Today's employment report in the euro area should extend the run of positive labour market data. We think employment rose 1.4% year-over-year in Q1, accelerating marginally from a 1.2% increase in Q4.

14 July. 2016 Faster Pay Gains for Job-Switchers Forcing Employers to Pay More (My Publications)

The details of the substantial pay raises being offered to some 18K JP Morgan employees over the next three years are much less important than the signal sent by the company's response to the tightening labor market. In an economy with 144M people on payrolls, hefty raises for JP Morgan employees won't move the needle in the hourly earnings data.

14 July. 2015 Light at the End of The Tunnel in Greece, as New Bailout is Close (My Publications)

The EU and Greece finally managed to agree on the framework for a third bailout yesterday, conditional on ratification in the Greek and EU parliaments this week. Mr. Tsipras' capitulation to EU demands will increase tensions within Syriza, but we expect the opposition comfortably to offset any government dissenters in this week's vote.

14 July. 2016 EZ GDP Growth all but Stalled in Q2, as Domestic Demand Slowed (My Publications)

Data yesterday showed that industrial production in the Eurozone stumbled in May. Production fell 1.2% month-to-month, driven by weakness in all major economies and falling output in all sub-industries. The poor headline follows an upwardly revised 1.4% jump in April, which means that production rose marginally in the first two months of the second quarter.

14 June. 2016 Eurozone Investment is Improving, But Growth will Slow in Q2 (My Publications)

Data today likely will show that manufacturing in the Eurozone was off to a strong start to the second quarter. Advance country data suggest that industrial production jumped 1.1% month-to-month in April, pushing the year-over-year rate up to 1.9% from 0.1% in March. The rise in output was driven mainly by Germany and France, but decent month-to-month gains in Ireland, Portugal and Greece also helped.

14 June. 2016 Kuczynski is Good For Peru, But he Won't Find it Easy to Rule (My Publications)

Pedro Kuczynski, the centre-right candidate of the Peruvians for Change party, won the presidential election held in June 5th. Mr. Kuczynski, a former finance minister and World Bank economist, defeated Ms. Keiko Fujimori, the candidate of the conservative Fuerza Popular party, and the daughter of jailed former leader Alberto Fujimori. Mr. Kuczynski's margin of victory over Ms. Fujimori was fewer than 43K votes, or just 0.2%.

14 Mar. Will the MPC Mull an Interest Rate Cut this Week? (My Publications)

This week's key market event likely will be the Monetary Policy Committee's meeting on Thursday, rather than the Budget on Wednesday, which probably will see the Chancellor stick to his previous tough fiscal plans.

14 March 2017 Commodity Prices won't Alter the Improving LatAm Picture (My Publications)

The medium-term outlook in most LatAm economies is improving, though economic activity is likely to remain anaemic in the near term. The gradual recovery in commodity prices is supporting resource economies, while the post-election surge in global stock prices has boosted confidence. But country-specific domestic considerations are equally relevant; the growth stories differ across the region.

14 Mar. 2016 Three Big Questions are the Key to the Fed's Actions this Year (My Publications)

A huge wave of data will break over markets this week, along with the FOMC meeting, new dot plots and Chair Yellen's press conference. But today is calm, with no significant data releases and no Fed speeches; policymakers are in purdah ahead of the meeting.

14 Mar. 2016 Peru Hold Rates, But Tightening Cycle Hasn't Ended Just Yet (My Publications)

Peru's central bank, the BCRP, kept borrowing costs at 3.25% last week, surprising the consensus forecast for a 25bp increase. This was an unexpected move because inflation risks have not abated much since the previous meeting, when policymakers lifted rates for the third straight month.

14 June. 2016 May Sales Will Be Less Impressive than April's but Good Enough (My Publications)

April's impressive-looking retail sales numbers--the headline jumped 1.3%, with non-auto sales up 0.8%--were boosted by two entirely separate factors, one of which will play no p art in May and one which will offer very modest support. The key lift in April came from the very early Easter, which confounded the seasonal adjustments, as it usually does.

14 Mar. 2016 Don't Abandon All Hope in EZ Equities - Better Times are Ahead (My Publications)

The benchmark MSCI EU ex-UK equity index was down a startling 17% year-over-year at the end of February. A disappointing policy package from the ECB in December initially put Eurozone equities on the back foot, and the awful start to the year for global risk assets has since piled on the misery.

14 July. 2015 Did Retail Sales Stutter In June after May's Strength? (My Publications)

We are a bit uneasy about today's data on economic activity. The NFIB index of activity in the small business sector is likely to undershoot consensus expectations, while retail sales are something of a black hole, at least at the core level, where we have no reliable month-to-month advance indicators. Our bullish view on the underlying state of the economy, and its likely second-half performance, hasn't changed, but perceptions count in the short-term and these reports will help set the market mood just ahead of Chair Yellen's Testimony tomorrow.

14 July 2017 The Unwinding of QE Remains a Long Way Off (My Publications)

In an interview with The Times yesterday, MPC member Ian McCafferty--who voted to raise interest rates in June--suggested he also might favour starting to run down the Bank's £435B s tock of gilt purchases soon.

14 February 2017 Yellen to Keep March Open, and Signal Fiscal Easing not Needed (My Publications)

We're not expecting drama from Chair Yellen's semi-annual Monetary Policy Testimony in the Senate today. Dr. Yellen will want to keep alive the idea of a rate hike next month, but she will not signal that action is likely, given the continuing lack of clarity on the path of fiscal policy.

14 Jan. 2015 - Small Firms Recovery Accelerates, but Labor Costs are Rising (My Publications)

Yesterday's data were second-tier in the eyes of the markets, but not, perhaps in the eyes of the Fed. The continued surge in job openings, which reached a 14-year high in December, means that the Beveridge Curve--which links the number of job openings to the unemployment rate--shows no signs at all of returning to normal.

14 Jan. 2015 A Question of Seniority as the European Court Decides on OMT (My Publications)

The European Court of Justice, ECJ, will not likely pour fuel on the slumbering fire later today by ruling that OMT is in violation of EU law.

14 February 2017 Global Manufacturing Picks Up Pace, Are Good News for LatAm? (My Publications)

More evidence indicating that the recovery in global industrial activity is underway and gaining momentum- has poured in. In particular, trade data from China, one of LatAm's biggest trading partners, was stronger than the market expected last month. Both commodity import and export volumes increased sharply in January, and this suggests better economic conditions for China's key trading partners.

14 February 2017 Brace for January Data to Show Another Hefty Rise in CPI Inflation (My Publications)

January's consumer price report, released today, likely will show that CPI inflation jumped to 1.9%--its highest rate since June 2014--from 1.6% in December. Inflation will continue to take big upward steps over the coming months, as retailers pass on to consumers large increase in import prices and energy companies increase tariffs.

14 December. 2016 No Change in Median Dots, Yellen Will Stonewall on Fiscal Easing (My Publications)

The Fed will raise rates by 25bp today, but we expect no change in the median expectation-the dotplot-for two rate hikes both next year and in 2018. We fully appreciate that fiscal easing on the scale proposed by President-elect Trump, or indeed anything like it, very likely would propel inflation to a pace requiring much bigger increases in rates.

14 February 2017 Will Today's EZ GDP Report Overcome Poor German Data? (My Publications)

All eyes in the Eurozone will be on the second estimate of Q4 GDP today, and the report likely will confirm that growth accelerated in Q4. We think real GDP rose 0.5% quarter-on-quarter, up from a 0.3% increase in Q3, in line with the first estimate. If this forecast is correct, the year-over-year rate will be unchanged at 1.8%. Risks to the headline, however, are tilted to the downside.

14 Jan. 2015 Industrial Production: A Tale of the Two Major LatAm Economies (My Publications)

On Monday we highlighted the grim state of the Brazilian industrial sector, where output fell by a huge 5.8% year-over-year in November. By contrast, the outlook for Mexico's industrial sector is much brighter.

14 Jan. 2016 A Downbeat Outlook for Q4 GDP Data in the Eurozone (My Publications)

EZ survey data were solid in the fourth quarter, pointing to robust GDP growth, but numbers from the real economy have so far not lived up to the rosy expectations. Data yesterday showed that industrial production fell 0.7% month-to-month in November, pushing the year-over-year rate down to 1.1% from a revised 2.0% in October. Italian data today likely will force marginal revisions to the headline next month, but they are unlikely to change the big picture.

14 July 2017 Core Inflation Pressures in the Eurozone Will Rise in Q3 and Q4 (My Publications)

Bond investors in the Eurozone are licking their wounds following a 40 basis point backup in 10-year yields since the end of last month. Nothing goes up in a straight line, but we doubt that inflation data will provide much comfort for bond markets in the short term.

14 July 2017 Ignore the Headline Trade Numbers, Chinese Growth is Slowing (My Publications)

China's headline trade numbers appear to paint a picture of an economy in rude health but scratch the surface and the story is quite different. The trade surplus rose to$42.8B in June from $40.8B in May, hitting consensus.

14 July 2017 Core CPI Inflation Won't Fall Forever, but When Will the Rebound Come? (My Publications)

Today brings a huge wave of data, but most market attention will be on the June CPI, following the run of unexpectedly soft core readings over the past three months.

14 July 2017 Brazilian Consumption Slowed in Q2, but it will Rebound in H2 (My Publications)

Brazil's economic situation has improved this year, and we still expect the recovery to continue over the second half, despite recent political volatility and soft Q2 data.

14 Jan. 2016 Does Cost-Push Inflation Give the Fed the Luxury of Time? (My Publications)

In yesterday's Monitor we set out the risk that accelerating wages will force the Fed to raise rates more quickly than expected, but we didn't have space to address the underlying premise of this story, namely, the idea that inflation is largely a cost-push phenomenon. From the perspective of fixed income investors, it might not seem to matter whether this is a realistic description of the inflation process, because Fed Chair Yellen believes it wholeheartedly, and her hands are on the levers of monetary policy.

14 Jan. 2016 Inflation Outlook Still Could Push MPC to Hike Before the Summer (My Publications)

Markets' judgement that the Monetary Policy Committee--which meets today--will wait until 2017 to raise interest rates overestimates the role that the drop in oil prices and slower GDP growth will play in its decision-making. The inflation risks emanating from the increasingly tight labour market still could motivate a tightening before the summer.

13 May. MPC Signals Bremain Rate Hike, and Sounds Cool on Brexit Cut (My Publications)

The MPC's "Super Thursday" releases suggest that the Committee won't wait long to raise interest rates after a vote to stay in the E.U., which remains the most likely outcome of June's referendum. Meanwhile, we saw nothing to support markets' view that the MPC would ease policy in the wake of a Brexit.

13 May. 2016 Savings Rate is Set to Dip as Retail Sales Rebound From Easter Hit (My Publications)

Some of the rise in the saving rate in recent months is real, but part of the increase likely reflects seasonal adjustment problems. The saving rate has risen between the fourth and first quarters in eight of the past 10 years, as our first chart shows.

13 Feb. 2015 Oil Chaos is Distorting the Trade Data - Focus on Domestic Demand (My Publications)

Most of the time we don't pay much attention to the monthly import and export prices numbers, which markets routinely ignore. Right now, though, they matter, because the plunge in oil prices is hugely depressing the numbers and, thanks to a technical quirk, depressing reported GDP growth.

13 February 2017 Too Soon to Conclude the Economy is Finally Rebalancing (My Publications)

Data on industrial production and trade released last week have fanned hopes that the U.K.'s growth model is moving away from its excessive reliance on household spending, and towards production and exports. But a close look at the underlying drivers of the strong headline figures suggests that it is too soon to hope that the economy is undergoing a major rebalancing.

13 February 2017 BCCh Says it's not Worried About Inflation, Will it Ease Tomorrow? (My Publications)

Chile's Central Bank's monetary policy meeting, scheduled for tomorrow, likely will be one of the most difficult in recent months. Economic activity remains soft, and GDP likely contracted in Q4, due to weakness in mining output and investment.

13 Feb. 2015 Cyclical outlook is improving in the euro area (My Publications)

GDP data today will probably show that the Eurozone economy accelerated to 0.3% quarter-on-quarter in Q4, up from 0.2% a quarter earlier. Industrial production came in disappointingly at 0.0% month-to-month in December, but this is not enough to change our forecast in the light of solid data on household spending.

13 Feb. 2015 A Tough 2015 Ahead for Brazil as Downside Risks to Growth Intensify (My Publications)

Over the last few months we have started to see hard evidence of Brazil's deceleration, and, as we have argued in previous Monitors, the slowdown is now set to become more visible. Over the coming weeks, markets will focus on whether Brazil is already in recession, its likely severity, and how the country will get out of this mess.

13 December 2016 Mexico's Industrial Sector Started Q4 Slowly, 2017 will be Poor (My Publications)

Industrial production in Mexico remained under pressure at the start of Q4. Output rose just 0.1% month-to-month in October, leaving the year-over-year rate unchanged at -1.4%, down from an average of -0.8% in Q3.

13 December. 2016 Today's NFIB Labor Data are not New, but they are Important (My Publications)

The falling unemployment rate and the threat it poses to the inflation outlook mean that the labor market numbers in the NFIB small business survey attract more attention than the other data in the report.

13 February 2017 Can French Investment Maintain Momentum in 2017? (My Publications)

French manufacturing cooled at the end of 2016. Industrial production slipped 0.9% month-to-month in December, partially reversing an upwardly revised 2.4% jump in November. The main hits came from declines in oil refining and manufacturing of cars and other transport equipment.

13 February 2017 What Would it Take to Persuade the Fed to Hike in March? (My Publications)

Our argument that rates could rise as soon as March has always been contingent on two factors, namely, robust labor market data and a degree of clarity on the extent of fiscal easing likely to emerge from Congress. On the first of these issues, the latest evidence is mixed.

13 Jan. 2016 Mexico's Industrial Sector Still Slowing - Services to the Rescue? (My Publications)

November production data in Mexico, released Monday, showed that the industrial economy remained quite soft in the last part of last year. The collapse in capital spending in the oil sector, slowing public spending, and weaker growth in EM and the U.S. manufacturing sector have combined to hit Mexican industrial output quite hard. Total production rose just 0.1% year-over-year in November, down from an already weak 0.5% in October, and below the 1.3% average increase in Q3. Output fell 0.5% month-to-month, the biggest drop since May, reflecting broad-based weakness.

13 Jan. 2016 Sterling Has Not Priced-in Brexit Risks Yet, Despite Recent Plunge (My Publications)

Claims abound that sterling's sharp depreciation since the start of the year--to its lowest level against the dollar since May 2010--partly reflects the growing risk that the U.K. will vote to leave the European Union in the forthcoming referendum. We see little evidence to support this assertion. Sterling's decline to date can be explained by the weakness of the economic data, meaning that scope remains for Brexit fears to push the currency even lower this year.

13 Jan. 2016 How Fast Can the Fed Allow Wages to Rise? (My Publications)

The leading wage indicators in the December NFIB survey, released in full yesterday--some of the labor market components appears a few days in advance, ahead of the official payroll report--all point to a substantial acceleration over the next six-to-nine months. Our first two charts show the NFIB jobs-hard-to-fill number and expected compensation numbers, respectively, compared to the rate of growth of hourly earnings. The message is extremely clear.

13 Jan. 2016 Even Senior Creditors are Not Safe in the Eurozone Banking Industry (My Publications)

Investors in Eurozone banks continue to face uncertain times, despite the ECB's best efforts to prop up the economy and financial markets via QE. The latest hit to confidence comes from the bail-in of selected senior debt in Portugal's Banco Espirito Santo. When the troubled lender was restructured in mid-2014, the equity and junior debt were left in a "bad" bank--and were virtually wiped out--while the deposits and senior debt went into the "good" bank Novo Banco. Senior debt holders expecting to recoup their money, however, were startled earlier this month by the decision to "re-assign" five selected bonds with total face value of €2B from Novo Banco to the bad bank, in effect wiping out the investors.

13 Jan. 2015 - Small Business Sector on the Brink of Normalization (My Publications)

Within the next few month, and perhaps as soon as next month, the gap between the headline NFIB and ISM manufacturing indexes, shown in our first chart, will close for the first time since late 2008.

13 Jan. 2015 Ageing and Export Dependency go Hand-in Hand in the Eurozone (My Publications)

Population ageing is, arguably, the most important long-term socioeconomic trend in the Eurozone. The demographic transition did not end in the 1970s as fertility hit replacement levels, contrary to the prediction by the stylised models of population change.

13 December 2016 CPI Inflation Likely Picked up in November, Bigger Advances Ahead (My Publications)

November's consumer price report likely will show that October's dip in CPI inflation was just a blip against a strong upward trend. We think that CPI inflation picked up to 1.1% in November, from 0.9% in October, in line with the consensus.

13 December 2016 Q4 Outlook is Brightening for the EZ Economy (My Publications)

One of the main conclusions we drew from last week's ECB meeting was that the QE program is here to stay for a while. If the economy improves, the central bank could reduce the pace of purchases further. But we struggle to come up with a forecast for growth and inflation next year that would allow the ECB to signal that QE is coming to an end.

12 September. 2016 Everything Changes in the Second Half (My Publications)

This week brings a wave of data on all aspects of the economy, bar housing. By the end o f the week, we'll have a better idea of the shape of consumers' spending, the industrial sector and the inflation picture, and estimates of third quarter GDP growth will start to mean something.

12 September. 2016 Mexico's 2017 Budget Proposals Signal Fiscal Discipline (My Publications)

The Mexican government last week unveiled its 2017 fiscal budget proposal. The plan makes clear that the shocks which have battered the economy and public finances since 2015 will linger in to next year. Mexico's government has been eager to cut spending in recent years.

12 September. 2016 More Poor Data Signal Slow Start to Q3 (My Publications)

Friday's economic data added to the evidence that the German economy stumbled in July. The seasonally adjusted trade surplus slipped to €19.4B, from a revised €21.4B in June.

12 September 2017 Stronger Mexican Manufacturing Overshadowed by Weak Mining (My Publications)

Industrial activity in Mexico had a very poor start to the third quarter. Output plunged 1.0% month-to- month in July, the biggest drop since May 2015, pushing the year-over-year rate down to -1.5%, from -0.2% in June.

12 September 2017 NFIB Labor Indicators Still Very Strong, Despite August Dips (My Publications)

The key labor market numbers from the monthly NFIB survey of small businesses are released ahead of the main report, due today.

12 September 2017 CPI Inflation Likely Leapt in August and is Still Set to Peak at 3% Soon (My Publications)

The upward trend in CPI inflation likely reasserted itself in August, following a hiatus in the last two months due to the decline in oil prices.

12 September 2017 Government Bonds in the EZ Enjoy Support Even Without QE (My Publications)

The EZ government bond market has been in a holding pattern for most of 2017. The euro area 10- year yield--German and French benchmark--is little changed from a year ago, though it is at the lower end of its range.

13 Apr. 2015 A June Hike Depends on the April, May Payroll Data - Expect Strength (My Publications)

Treasury yields closed Friday a few basis points higher across the curve than the day before the surprisingly soft March payroll report. A combination of slightly less dovish-than-expected FOMC minutes, a hawkish speech from Richmond president Jeff Lacker, rising oil prices, and robust--albeit second-tier--data last week seem to have done the work.

13 Apr. 2015 Energy Output Helped French GDP to a Strong First Quarter (My Publications)

The French manufacturing sector remains challenged by weak end-demand. Industrial production was unchanged month-to-month in February, equivalent to a meagre 0.6% increase year-over- year; manufacturing output fell 0.8% on the same basis.

13 April 2017 Slowing Labour Income Growth Highlights Consumers' Woes (My Publications)

Yesterday's labour market data showed that growth in households' income has slowed significantly in recent months. Firms are both hiring cautiously and restraining wage increases, due to heightened uncertainty about the economic outlook and rising raw material and non-wage labour costs. Consumers' spending, therefore, will support GDP growth to a far smaller extent this year than last.

13 August. 2015 More Soft-Looking Sales as Falling Prices Depress Nominal Activity? (My Publications)

Retail sales have consistently disappointed markets this year, but investors' concerns are misplaced. The rate of growth of core sales has slowed because the strength of the dollar has pushed down the prices of an array of imported consumer goods, and people appear to have spent a substantial proportion of the saving on services.

13 April 2017 Core PPI In ation is set to Rise Further, Lifting Core CPI and PCE (My Publications)

Today's producer price report for March likely will show a further increase in core goods inflation, which already has risen to 2.0% in February, from 0.2% in the same month last year. The acceleration in the U.S. PPI follows the even more dramatic surge in China's PPI for manufactured goods, which jumped to 6.6% year-over-year in February, from minus 4.9% a year ago. China's PPI is much more sensitive to commodity prices than the U.S. series, so there's very little chance that core U.S. PPI goods inflation will rise to anything like this rate.

13 Apr. 2016 Key Data Improving in the Biggest LatAm Economies, Just (My Publications)

Industrial production in Mexico surged 2.6% year-over-year in February, up from a 0.8% increase in January. A favourable calendar effect, however, is a key part of this story. Once adjusted for the leap year, which added an extra working day, industrial production rose only 0.8%, down from a 1.6% expansion in January.

13 Apr. 2016 Downside Risk as Autos Set to Pull Down March Retail Sales (My Publications)

The headline March retail sales numbers probably will look horrible, thanks to the unexpected drop in auto sales reported by the manufacturers earlier this month. Their unit sales data don't always move exactly in line with the dollar value numbers in the retail sales report, as our first chart shows, but it's hard to imagine anything other than a clear decline today.

13 Apr. 2016 Easter Effect Will Play Tricks With Economic Data in Coming Months (My Publications)

The "timing of Easter" will feature prominently in our reports over the coming weeks, starting with yesterday's German inflation data. Inflation rose to 0.3% year-over-year in March, from 0.0% in February, in line with the initial estimate.

13 January 2017 BCB to Continue Easing Rapidly, Amid Falling Inflation (My Publications)

Brazil's central bank started the year firing on all cylinders. The Copom surprised markets on Wednesday by delivering a bold 75bp rate cut, bringing the Selic rate down to 13.0%. In October and November, the Copom eased by only 25bp, but inflation is now falling rapidly and consistently. The central bank said in its post-meeting communiqué that conditions have helped establish a "new rhythm of easing", assuming inflation expectations hold steady.

13 January 2017 The Eurozone Economy Remains Oblivious to Political Risks (My Publications)

The euro area economy continues to defy rising political uncertainty. Data yesterday showed that industrial production, ex-construction, in the Eurozone jumped 1.5% month-to-month in November, pushing the year-over-year rate up to 3.2% from a revised 0.8% in October. Output rose in all the major economies, but the headline was flattered by a 16.3% month-to-month leap in Ireland. This was due to a production jump in Ireland's "modern sector" which includes the country's large multinational technology sector.

13 Mar. 2015 Q1 GDP outlook is still decent, despite poor Industrial Production (My Publications)

Industrial production in the Eurozone fell a disappointing 0.1% month-on-month in January, driven by low output in Italy and Germany, as well as a large drop in Finland. But December production was revised up to 0.3% month-to-month, from the initially estimated 0.0%.

13 Mar. 2015 What Next For Oil Prices? Saudi Arabia Holds the Key (My Publications)

Straight-line extrapolations are always risky--nothing lasts forever--but if you allow us the indulgence, our first chart suggests that domestic U.S. oil production will breach 10M barrels per day by the summer.

13 March 2017 A Slowdown in the U.K. Will Dent the German Trade Surplus (My Publications)

Germany's external surplus remained resilient at the start of the year. Data on Friday showed that the seasonally adjusted trade surplus rose marginally to €18.5B in January, from a revised €18.3B in December.

13 Mar. 2015 FX Markets Punish Imbalances When The Fed Hikes - Brazil At Risk (My Publications)

LatAm currencies have suffered in recent weeks. Each country has its own story, so the currency hit has been uneven, but all LatAm economies share one factor: Fear of the start of a Fed tightening cycle.

13 June. 2016 Germany Escapes Deflation, and it Won't Return Anytime Soon (My Publications)

Inflation in Germany rebounded last month, rising to plus 0.1% year-over-year in May, from minus 0.1% in April. We think the economy has escaped the claws of deflation, for now. Household energy prices fell 5.7% year-over-year in May, up from a 6.3% decline in April, and the rate will rise further. Base effects and higher oil prices point to a surge in energy inflation in the next three-to-six months.

13 June. 2016 Banxico's Dilemma: Help the Recovery or Support the MXN? (My Publications)

Markets are still discounting Banxico rate increases in the near term, despite the fact that Mexico's inflation is under control. Unless the MXN goes significantly above 18.7 per USD in the near term, or activity accelerates, we see little scope for rate increases until after the Fed hikes. After May's soft U.S. payrolls, and in light of the economic and financial risk posed by the U.K. referendum, we think a hike this week is unlikely.

13 June. 2016 Further Thoughts on May Jobs, and Why June Won't be Great (My Publications)

We are still annoyed, for want of a better word, by the May payroll numbers. Specifically, we're annoyed that we got it wrong, and we want to know why. Our initial thoughts centered on the idea that the plunge in the stock market in the first six weeks of the year hit business confidence and triggered a pause in hiring decisions, later reflected in the payroll numbers.

13 March 2017 Business as Usual for LatAm Central Banks, Despite the Fed Hike (My Publications)

The Fed rate hike on Wednesday is fully priced in to LatAm markets, so we expect no significant immediate reaction when the trigger is pulled. But as markets gradually come around to our view that future U.S. rate risk is to the upside, markets will come under renewed pressure.

13 March 2017 Signs of a Slowdown in Q1 Ease Pressure on the MPC to Hike Rates (My Publications)

The MPC's meeting on Thursday looks set to be a perfunctory affair. Signs that the economy has lost momentum this year, alongside downward surprises from CPI inflation in January and wage growth in December, mean the Committee won't give the idea of hiking rates a moment's thought.

13 May. 2016 Brazil's Retail Sector Still Under Pressure - Stabilization in H2, Just? (My Publications)

The recession in Brazilian consumers' spending continues, but the severity of the pain is easing. Retail sales plunged 0.9% month-to-month in March, pushing the year-over-rate down to -5.7%, from a revised -4.2% in February. The March headline likely was depressed by the early Easter.

13 May. 2016 EZ Manufacturing Jumped in Q1, but Likely Will Nosedive in Q2 (My Publications)

Activity in the Eurozone industrial sector cooled at the end of the first quarter. Manufacturing production declined 0.8% month-to-month in March, pushing the year-over-year rate down to 0.2% from a revised 1.0% in February. Over Q1 as a whole, though, the story was positive.

13 May. 2015 Fed Lift Off Slightly Delayed - Breathing Space for LatAm? (My Publications)

The US employment data last week reduced further the likelihood of a June Fed rate increase. In turn, this changes the likely timing of the normalization process in some LatAm economies. Our Chief Economist, Ian Shepherdson, expects the Fed to start its normalization process in July or September; the strength of the employment data will prevent any postponement beyond the third quarter.

13 May. 2015 Eurozone Q1 GDP Should Beat Consensus - Best since 2011 (My Publications)

Monthly manufacturing and retail sales data point to upside risk to the consensus expectation of 0.4% quarter-on-quarter in Q1 Eurozone real GDP growth. Advance country data indicate that industrial production was unchanged month-to-month in March, equivalent to a 0.9% increase quarter-on-quarter.

13 March 2017 Will the Labor Data Push the Fed to Hike Again in June? (My Publications)

With rates now certain to rise this week, the real importance of the employment picture is what it says about the timing of the next hike. To be clear, we think the Fed will raise rates again in June, and will at that meeting add another dot to the plot, making four hikes this year.

13 May. 2015 Core Sales Should Continue to Recover, but Easter is a Wild Card (My Publications)

We have argued for some time that market disappointment over the recent sluggishness of consumption has been misplaced. In our view, investors have placed too little weight on the impact of the severe winter, and have been too hasty in looking for the impact of the drop in gasoline sales.

13 June 2017 The Eurozone and Asia's Big Economies are Joined at the Hip (My Publications)

In her inaugural Monitor, our Chief Asia Economist Freya Beamish plots three scenarios for the Chinese economy. The best-case scenario is that China makes a smooth transition to consumer-led growth.

13 June 2017 Solid Mexican Manufacturing Eclipsed By Other Key Sectors (My Publications)

Activity in the Mexican industrial sector cooled marginally at the start of the second quarter, but the drop was not as dramatic as the headlines suggested. Output fell 4.4% year-over-year in April, after a 3.4% increase in March.

13 July 2017 The Eurozone Economy Maintained Momentum in Q2 (My Publications)

Yesterday's data showed that industrial production in the Eurozone accelerated at the end of spring. Output, ex-construction, jumped 1.3% month-to-month in May, much better than the downwardly-revised 0.3% rise in April; the rise pushed the year-over-year rate up to a six-year high of 4.0%.

13 July 2017 Yellen Expects the Labor Market to Tighten Further, and Rates to Rise (My Publications)

Chair Yellen broke no new ground in her Testimony yesterday, repeating her long-standing view that the tightening labor market requires the Fed to continue normalizing policy at a gradual pace.

13 July. 2015 A deal inches closer, but the EU is gambling dangerously with Grexit (My Publications)

The draft Eurogroup document circulated Sunday evening indicates that European leaders seemingly are willing to offer Greece a new bailout. But it is conditional on passing required legislation reforming pensions and taxes on Wednesday. A "time-out" from the Eurozone, was discussed as a bizarre alternative, but this would be the equivalent of Grexit and default.

13 July 2017 Japanese PPI Inflation to Decelerate, but Only Modestly (My Publications)

Japan's producer price inflation levelled off in June and, for now, both commodity prices and currency moves in the first half imply that inflation should fall in the second half.

13 July 2017 Don't Extrapolate from May's Uptick in Basic Wage Growth (My Publications)

Yesterday's labour market data gave sterling a shot in the arm on t wo counts. First, the headline, three-month average, unemployment rate fell to just 4.5% in May, from 4.6% in April.

13 January 2017 The MPC Is In For a Nasty Inflation Shock This Year (My Publications)

Over the last decade, the MPC has underestimated the extent and duration of departures of CPI inflation from the 2% target. Inflation exceeded the MPC's expectations in the early 2010s, as policymakers underestimated the impact of sterling's prior depreciation and overestimated the role that slack would play in stifling price pressures. Inflation also undershot the MPC's forecast between 2014 and 2016, when sterling's appreciation reduced import prices.

13 January 2017 Will Consumers' Spending Rise in Line with the Sentiment Surveys? (My Publications)

December's retail sales numbers are the most important of the year for retailers, but they don't necessarily tell us anything about the future prospects for consumers' spending or the broad economy. The December 2016 numbers, however, might be different, because they capture consumers' behavior in the first full month after the election.

13 July. 2015 Dull Yellen Testimony Given Greek Story - then Back to Labor Data? (My Publications)

We expect Greece to do what it needs to do by Wednesday to secure its third bailout, and, judging by her speech in Cleveland last Friday, so does the Fed Chair. It's always risky to assume blithely that European politicians will do the right thing in the end, and they seem absolutely determined to humiliate Greece before writing the checks, but a completed deal is the most likely outcome.

13 July. 2015 Industrial Production in Mexico stalled in May - But no panic, yet (My Publications)

Mexico's latest industrial production figures, released on Friday, showed that the recovery is stuttering. May output fell 0.9% year-over-year, down from the 1.2% gain in April. Total production was depressed by a 1.5% month-to-month drop in construction output, after two consecutive increases.

13 June 2017 May's Inflation Figures Likely Will Bring Another Upside Surprise (My Publications)

May's consumer price figures, released today, will provide the first clean inflation read for three months, following the distortions created by this year's late Easter. Consensus forecasts and the MPC have underestimated CPI inflation regularly since the middle of last year, when the impact of sterling's depreciation began to push into the data.

13 June 2017 NFIB Headline Likely to Decay, but Capex and Jobs Readings are Strong (My Publications)

Under normal circumstances, we can predict movements in the headline NFIB index from shifts in the key labor market components, which are released a day ahead of the official employment report, and, hence, about 10 days before the full NFIB survey appears.

13 June 2017 Debt-Fuelled Korean Consumption is at Risk as Rates Rise (My Publications)

When Park Geun-hye came to power in Korea 2013, it was to cheers of "economic democratisation". At the time, I wrote a report with a list of reforms that would be needed for Korea to "economically democratise".

13 July. 2016 Will Higher Prices for Imports Change Inflation Perceptions? (My Publications)

In recent years we have argued consistently that investors and the commentariat overstate the importance of the dollar as a driver of U.S. inflation. Only about 15% of the core CPI is meaningfully affected by shifts in the value of the dollar, because the index is dominated by domestic non-tradable services.

13 July. 2016 German Inflation is Rising, but Will Bund Yields Pay Attention? (My Publications)

The final June inflation report from Germany yesterday confirmed that pressures are rising. Inflation rose to 0.3% year-over-year in June, up from 0.1% in May, mainly due to higher energy prices. Household energy prices--utilities--fell 4.9% year-over-year, up from a 5.7% decline in May, while deflation in petrol prices eased to -9.4%, up from -12.1% in May.

13 July. 2016 Grim Retail Sales in Brazil Highlight the Painful Stabilization Process (My Publications)

Evidence that Brazil's consumption recession has hit bottom seemed to vanish yesterday with the May retail sales report. Sales plunged 1.0% month-to-month, pushing the year-over-rate down to a terrible-looking -9.0%, from a revised -6.9% in April. Adding insult to injury, the month-to-month number for April was revised down by 0.2 percentage points.

11 Apr. 2016 Stronger Growth and Accelerating Wages Will Shift Rate Sentiment (My Publications)

A reader sent us last week a series of five simple feedback loops, all of which ended with the Fed remaining "cautious". For example, in a scenario in which the dollar strengthens--perhaps because of stronger U.S. economic data--markets see an increased risk of a Chinese devaluation, which then pummels EM assets, making the Fed nervous about global growth risks to the domestic economy.

11 Apr. 2016 Slowing German Export Growth Adds to Manufacturing Woes (My Publications)

The first quarter probably saw continued weakness in German net trade, despite the modest February rebound in gross exports. The seasonally-adjusted trade surplus rose to €19.7B from €18.7B in January, lifted by a 1.3% month-to-month rise in exports, which offset a 0.4% increase in imports.

04 October. 2016 EZ Manufacturing Continues to Punch Above its Weight (My Publications)

Yesterday's survey data tell a story of resilient manufacturing in the Eurozone. The headline EZ PMI rose to 52.6 in September, from 51.7 in August, lifted by a rise in new orders to a three-month high.

04 October. 2016 The August ISM Plunge was a Fluke, After all, What Happens Next? (My Publications)

The substantial, though incomplete, rebound in the September ISM manufacturing survey is consistent with our view that the outlook for the industrial economy right now is better than at any time since before the crash in oil prices

05 August. 2015 Corporate Bonds are Struggling, But QE and ZIRP offer Support (My Publications)

A looming rate lift-off at the Fed, chaos in Greece, and a renewed rout in commodities have given credit markets plenty to worry about this year. The Bloomberg global high yield index is just about holding on to a 0.7% gain year-to-date, but down 2.5% since the middle of May. The picture carries over to the euro area where the sell-off is worse than during the taper tantrum in 2013.

04 October. 2016 Manufacturing Revival Bolsters Case for the MPC to Hold Fire (My Publications)

The odds of the MPC cutting interest rates again in November took another knock yesterday after further signs that the manufacturing sector is getting back on its feet quickly.

04 May. 2015 Q1 Trade Hit to GDP Will Reverse in Q2, but Oil Capex to Drop Again (My Publications)

Just two components of first quarter GDP were weak enough together to depress growth by 2.0 percentage points. Net foreign trade subtracted 1.25 percentage points, while falling investment in non-residential structures reduced growth by 0.75pp.

04 Mar. 2016 Will the MPC Cut Rates to Counteract the Slowdown? (My Publications)

The chances of a cut in official interest rates were boosted yesterday by the sharp fall in the business activity index of the Markit/CIPS report on services in February, to its weakest level since April 2013. Its decline, to just 52.8 from 55.6 in January, mirrored falls in the manufacturing and construction PMIs earlier in the week and pushed the weighted average of the three survey's main balances down to a level consistent with quarter-on-quarter GDP growth of just 0.2% in Q1.

04 May. 2015 Andean Countries Will Continue To Recover Despite a Tough Quarter (My Publications)

The major Andean economies had a very challenging first quarter. In Colombia, the effect of the sharp fall in oil prices has become more evident in the last few months. The ISE economic activity index--a monthly proxy for GDP--fell considerably during 2014, with a significant deceleration over the last half of the year.

05 Feb. 2016 Bonds Signal an Imminent EZ Recession, but Don't Take the Bait (My Publications)

Strong real M1 growth suggests the cyclical recovery is in good shape. But recent economic data indicate GDP growth slowed in Q4, and survey evidence deteriorated in January. This slightly downbeat message, however, is a far cry from the horror story told by financial markets. The recent collapse in stock-to-bond returns extends the decline which began in Q2 last year, signalling the Eurozone is on the brink of recession.

05 Feb. 2016 Downside Jobs Risk as Seasonals, Weather Effects Combine (My Publications)

We are pretty bullish about the prospects for the economy this year, but we try not to let our core view interfere with our take on the individual indicators. And our analysis suggests that the odds strongly favor a "disappointing" headline payroll number today; we have revised down our forecast to 160K from our previous 175K estimate.

05 Jan. 2016 ISM Manufacturing Shouldn't Fall Further, Seasonals Permitting (My Publications)

The first major data release of 2016 showed manufacturing activity slipping a bit further at the end of last year, but we doubt the underlying trend in the ISM manufacturing index will decline much more. Anything can happen in any given month, especially in data where the seasonal adjustments are so wayward, but the key new orders and production indexes both rose in January; almost all the decline in the headline index was due to a drop in the lagging employment index.

05 May. 2015 Eurozone Q1 GDP beat the U.S. and the U.K., But It Won't Last (My Publications)

Advance data indicate that Q1 annualized GDP growth in the U.S. was a trivial 0.2%. And in the U.K., annualized growth is estimated to have slowed to 1.2%, from 2.4% in Q4.

05 May. 2015 No Signs of Surging Consumption, But Much too Soon for Gloom (My Publications)

We have argued for some time that investors began much too soon to look for stronger consumption in the wake of the drop in gasoline prices. Typically, turning points in gas prices trigger turning points in the rate of growth of retail sales with a lag of six or seven months.

05 Jan. 2016 Don't be Tricked by Fall in German Inflation - the Dip will be Temporary (My Publications)

Advance data suggest German inflation pressures eased towards the end of last year. Inflation fell to 0.3% year-over-year in December from 0.4% in November, likely due to a fall in food inflation--mean reversion in fruit and vegetables inflation--and a sharp fall in the annual price increase of clothing and shoes. State data indicate that deflation in household utilities persisted, but that inflation of fuel and transportation is slowly recovering. Assuming a stable oil price in coming months, base effects should push up energy price inflation in the first quarter, though it should then fall again slightly in the second quarter. Overall, though, we expect energy price inflation gradually to stabilise and recover this year.

05 Jan. 2016 Credit Flows Aren't Strengthening Enough to Prevent a Slowdown (My Publications)

November's money and credit figures brought welcome news that the recovery in bank lending is strengthening. This revival should continue, now that banks have completed most of the work required to improve their capital positions. But we doubt lending will recover quickly enough to prevent the economic recovery slowing in 2016, as the downward pressure on growth from the fiscal squeeze and the strong pound builds.

05 Feb. 2016 Inflation Report Indicates Rate Hike Not as Distant as Markets Think (My Publications)

The "Super Thursday" releases from the Monetary Policy Committee--MPC--indicate that financial market turbulence and the approaching E.U. referendum have kiboshed the chances of an interest rate rise in the first half of this year. Nonetheless, the MPC's forecasts clearly imply that it expects to raise rates much sooner than markets currently anticipate, and the Governor signalled that a rate cut isn't under active consideration.

05 Feb. 2016 The Strong Dollar is Supporting Mexico's Domestic Economy (My Publications)

Mexico's structural reforms, robust fundamentals, and its close ties to the U.S. should have conferred a degree of protection from the turmoil in EMs over the past year. But its markets have been hit as hard as other LatAm countries by the sell-off in global markets in recent weeks. The MXN fell about 5% against the USD in January alone, and has dropped by 20% over the last year.

04 Mar. 2016 Solid Services Activity Continues to Limit the Slide in the PMIs (My Publications)

Yesterday's final February PMI data were slightly stronger than expected, due to upbeat services data. The composite PMI in the Eurozone fell to 53.0, a bit above the initial 52.7 estimate, from 53.6 in January. The PMI likely will dip slightly in Q1 on average, compared to Q4, but it continues to indicate stable GDP growth of about 0.3%-to-0.4% quarter-on-quarter.

04 Mar. 2016 Downside Risks for Payrolls and Wages, but Trends are Solid (My Publications)

The underlying trend in payroll growth probably has not changed significantly from the 228K average monthly gains recorded last year. But the average hides wide variations, some triggered by seasonal adjustment problems and others by one-time weather effects or unavoidable and random sampling error. January's below-trend 151K increase was likely a victim of seasonal problems, because payroll gains in recent years have tended to be soft at the start of the year after outsized fourth quarter increases.

03 October. 2016 First Signs of Recovery in Brazilian Private Consumption? (My Publications)

Brazil's recession has been severe, triggered by the downturn in the commodity cycle, which revealed the underlying structural weaknesses in the economy. This set off an acute shock in domestic demand, but it has bottomed in recent months and we now expect a gradual recovery to emerge.

03 October. 2016 ISM Unlikely to Rebound Much, but Manufacturing is Not Shrinking (My Publications)

Today's September ISM manufacturing survey is one of the most keenly-awaited for some time. Was the unexpected plunge in August a one-time fluke--perhaps due to sampling error, or a temporary reaction to the Gulf Coast floods, or Brexit--or was it evidence of a more sustained downshift, possibly triggered by political uncertainty?

04 August. 2015 Stable Manufacturing in the EZ, but Slowing China is a Risk (My Publications)

Eurozone manufacturing is showing signs of stabilisation. Final PMI data showed the headline gauge falling trivially to 52.4 in July from 52.5 in June, slightly above the initial estimate of 52.2. New orders slowed, though, with companies reporting weakness in export business amid firm domestic demand.

03 October. 2016 Deutsche's Woes Persist but it's not a European Lehman Moment (My Publications)

The European financial sector was in the news again on Friday, propelled by further weakness in Deutsche Bank's share price. In our Monitor of September 27, we said that worries of a European "Lehman Moment" were overblown.

03 October. 2016 The Economy's Near-Term Resilience Has Brittle Foundations (My Publications)

Last week's official data unequivocally indicated that the Brexit vote has not had a detrimental impact on the economy yet.

03 Mar. 2016 Construction Slowdown is Symptomatic of Wider Malaise (My Publications)

The revival in the construction sector is slowing on all fronts as the fiscal squeeze intensifies, business confidence fades and the recovery in housebuilding loses momentum. These headwinds are likely to ensure that construction output only holds steady this year, thereby contributing to the broader economic slowdown.

03 Mar. 2016 ISM Non-manufacturing Set to Rebound, Lagging Core Sales (My Publications)

The headline ISM non-manufacturing index is not, in our view, a leading indicator of anything much. The survey covers a broad array of non manufacturing activity, including mining, healthcare, and financial services, but most of the time it tends to follow the track of real core retail sales, as our first chart shows.

04 Feb. 2016 Are Jobless Claims Starting to Rise? If so, Where Will They Stop? (My Publications)

The pace of layoffs might be picking up. Our first chart looks pretty convincing, but it's much too soon to know for sure. The claims data from mid-December through late January are subject to serious seasonal adjustment problems, partly because Christmas falls on a different day of the week each year and partly because the exact timing of post-holiday layoffs varies from year-to-year.

04 Feb. 2016 EZ Consumers' Spending Stalled in Q4, but Should Rebound in Q1 (My Publications)

Data yesterday suggest Eurozone consumers' spending rebounded towards the end of Q4. Retail sales rose 0.3% month-to-month in December, pushing the year-over-year rate down to 1.4%, from a revised 1.6% in November. A +0.3 percentage point net revision to the month-to-month data added to the optimism, but was not enough to prevent a slowdown over the quarter as a whole.

04 Jan. 2016 While We Were Out... (My Publications)

...The data were all over the map, with existing home sales plunging while consumer confidence rose; Chicago-area manufacturing activity plunged but national durable goods were flat; real consumption rose at a decent clip but pending home sales dipped again. Markets, by contrast, are little changed from the week before the holidays. What to make of it all?

04 Mar. 2016 Brazil's Economy Collapsed in 2015 - No Sign of Quick Recovery (My Publications)

The BCB's Copom kept Brazil's Selic rate at 14.25% this week, as expected. The brief accompanying communiqué was very similar to the January statement, saying that after assessing the outlook for growth and inflation, and "the current balance of risks, considering domestic and, mainly, external uncertainties", the Copom decided to keep the Selic rate at a nine-year high, without bias.

04 Jan. 2016 Uncertainty in Brazil Contrasts With Mexico's Benign Outlook (My Publications)

While we were out, Brazil's economic, fiscal and political position continued to deteriorate further. The recession deepened in the fourth quarter, with Brazil's economic activity index surprising yet again to the downside in October, falling for the eight consecutive month. The index fell 0.6% month-to-month and 6.4% year-over-year, the biggest contraction since the index began in 2004. And the prospects for first quarter consumption and industrial output have deteriorated substantially. Unemployment increased further in November, and inflation continues to rise, with the mid-month CPI--the IPCA-15 index-- increasing 1.2% month-to-month in November, after a 0.9% increase in October.

04 Jan. 2016 Narrow Money is Growing Solidly, but Likely Peaked in Q4 (My Publications)

Data released over the holidays suggest that money supply dynamics in the Eurozone remain solid, but also that growth is no longer accelerating. M3 growth slipped to 5.1% year-over-year in November from 5.3% in October, partly due to a sharp monthly fall in the stock of repurchase agreements. Momentum in narrow money, however, also dipped. M1 growth slowed to 11.2% year-over-year from 11.8% in October, mainly due to a modest fall in overnight deposit growth.

04 Feb. 2016 Inflation Report Unlikely to Support the Markets' Dovish Pricing (My Publications)

The recent slide in market interest rates suggests investors expect the Monetary Policy Committee--MPC--to strike a dovish note today, when the decision and minutes of this week's meeting are released and the Inflation Report is published, at 12.00 GMT.

04 Jan. 2016 Further Slowdown Won't Prevent the MPC Raising Rates in 2016 (My Publications)

Markets were on the right side of the argument with economists about the outlook for monetary policy in 2015, but we doubt history will repeat itself this year. The consensus among economists a year ago was for interest rates to rise to 0.75% from 0.5% by the end of 2015, in contrast to the markets' view that an increase was unlikely.

05 October. 2016 Construction Still Set to Struggle, Despite the Looser Fiscal Stance (My Publications)

Promises of new money to facilitate construction on public sector land from the Chancellor and the pick-up in the construction PMI have fostered optimism that the sector's downturn is over.

05 October. 2016 EZ PPI deflation will be over soon (My Publications)

Yesterday's EZ producer price data showed that deflationary pressures in the manufacturing sector are fading. The headline PPI index fell 0.2% month- to-month in August, pushing the year-over-year up to -2.1%, from a revised -2.6% July.

07 May. 2015 How Far Will Yields Rise When the Activity Data Turn Higher? (My Publications)

Along with just about every other commentator and market participant, we have been wondering in recent months how longer Treasuries would react to the Fed starting to raise rates at the same time the ECB and BoJ are pumping new money into their economies via QE.

07 May. 2015 Inflation Expectations, not Greece, are Pushing EZ Yields Higher (My Publications)

Even though Greece managed to avert default yesterday by paying €200M in interest to the IMF, our assumption is that the country remains on the brink of running out of money. Our view is supported by the government's decision to expropriate local authority funds, and reports that the government's domestic liabilities, excluding wages and pensions, are not being met.

07 October. 2016 Don't Mistake Volatility in Production and Trade for Underlying Strength (My Publications)

The consensus view that industrial production rose by a mere 0.1% month-to-month in August looks far too low; we expect today's report to reveal a jump of about 1%.

07 Mar. 2016 Will the Chancellor's Rules Compel Him to Announce More Austerity? (My Publications)

The Budget on March 16 is set to mark the end of Chancellor George Osborne's lucky streak. Without corrective action, his self-imposed debt rule-- one of the two specified in the 'legally-binding' Charter for Budget Responsibility--looks set to be breached.

07 Mar. 2016 Wage Pressures are Building - Fed Inaction Will Hurt, Later (My Publications)

Whatever you do, don't fret over the apparent loss of momentum in the wages numbers; it's a classic statistical head fake, as we pointed out in Friday's Monitor, before the report. When the 15th of the month--payday for people paid semi monthly-- falls after the employment survey week, the BLS fails properly to capture their income, and hourly earnings are under-reported.

07 Mar. 2016 Brazil's Economy Collapsed in 2015 - No Sign of Quick Recovery (My Publications)

Brazil's economic news remained grim at the headline level last week, but some of the details were less bad than in recent months. Industrial production fell by 13.8% year-over-year in January, down from the 12.1% drop in December and the worst performance on this basis since mid-2009.

07 Mar. 2016 Poor Q4 GDP Data Don't Signal the End of Italy's Cyclical Upturn (My Publications)

Final Italian Q4 GDP data on Friday confirmed that the economy stumbled at the year-end. Real GDP rose 0.1% quarter-on-quarter in Q4, slowing from 0.2% in Q3, in line with the initial es timate. But the details were better than the headline. Inventories shaved off a hefty 0.4 percentage points, reversing boosts in Q3 and Q2, so final demand rose a robust 0.5%. Consumption added 0.2pp, while public spending contributed 0.1pp.

07 October. 2016 Relief as New Orders in German Manufacturing Rise Strongly (My Publications)

Yesterday's German factory orders report showed that manufacturing activity accelerated in August. New orders rose 1.0% month-to-month, after a 0.3% increase in July, pushing the year-over-year rate up to +2.1% from a revised -0.6%.

07 October. 2016 Brazil Advances on Austerity, Expect More Progress Soon (My Publications)

On Tuesday, Brazil's Special Committee presented its recommendation for a constitutional amendment capping spending. Currently it is being voted in the Lower House Committee.

08 Feb. 2016 If the Fed Focuses on Wages, They'll Hike in March (My Publications)

The Fed's decisions over the next few months hinge on the relative importance policymakers place on the apparent slowdown in payroll growth and the unambiguous acceleration in wages. We qualify our verdict on the payroll numbers because the January number was very close to our expectation, which in turn was based largely on an analysis of the seasonals, not the underlying economy.

08 Jan. 2016 Colombia's Economic Resilience Will be Challenged - Oil Is Still Key (My Publications)

Colombia was likely the fastest growing economy in LatAm in 2015, but it is set to slow this year as monetary and fiscal policy are tightened, and commodity prices remain under pressure during the first half of the year, at least. Economic activity was surprisingly resilient during 2015, especially during the second half, despite the COP's sell-off, high inflation, and subdued consumer confidence.

08 Feb. 2016 German Manufacturing likely Ended Q4 on a Weak Note (My Publications)

Demand in the German manufacturing sector stumbled at the end of Q4. Factory orders fell 0.7% month-to-month in December, but the details of the report were slightly more upbeat than the headline. The main hit came from a 2.5% fall in domestic orders, chiefly as a result of weakness in the intermediate goods sector.

08 Feb. 2016 Complacency Rife About Boost to Prices From National Living Wage (My Publications)

The Chancellor announced to great fanfare last July that a new National Living Wage-- NLW--would be introduced in April 2016 at 7.5% above the existing legal minimum for most workers. Companies can and will take a variety of actions to mitigate the impact on their costs.

07 October. 2016 Payrolls Likely Unexciting Last Month, But Wages Should Rebound (My Publications)

Private sector payroll growth has averaged 190K over the past year, but the six-month average has slowed to 150K. The downshift is consistent with the weakening in survey-based measures of hiring intentions, which began to soften at the turn of the year.

08 Feb. 2016 Banxico Is Focused on the MXN, But the Fed Still Leads (My Publications)

Banxico left Mexico's benchmark interest rate at 3.25% last week, after increasing it by 25bp in December, when the U.S. Fed raised rates. Banxico's board maintained its neutral tone and indicated that the balance of risks has deteriorated for growth and short-term inflation. As usual, policymakers reiterated the importance of following the Fed closely to avoid financial instability, which in turn could spill over to inflation.

07 Jan. 2016 Will Inventories Accentuate the Slowdown? (My Publications)

The rate of inventory-building regularly is a major influence on GDP growth, but often is overlooked by analysts. Much slower inventory accumulation than in 2014 was the key source of downside surprise to the 2015 consensus GDP growth forecast, and we think inventories likely will be a sustained drag on GDP growth this year too.

07 Jan. 2016 Uncertainty Over China's Currency Intentions Set to Persist (My Publications)

The 2.4% depreciation of the yuan over the past month has not been quite as big as the 3.0% move on August 11, and it's not a big enough shift to make a material difference to aggregate U.S. export performance. Market nerves, then, seem to us to be largely a reflection of fear of what might come next. China's real effective exchange rate--the trade-weighted index adjusted for relative inflation rates--has risen relentlessly over the past decade, and to restore competitiveness to, say, its 2011 level, would require a 20%-plus devaluation.

06 Jan. 2016 Chile's Economic Recovery is Still Fragile And China-Dependent (My Publications)

Chile's economic outlook is still clouded, due mostly to the slowdown in China and low copper prices. But the steady, slow increase in the Imacec index, a monthly proxy for GDP, supports our view of a sustained but modest economic recovery this year. The index increased 1.8% year-over-year in November, marginally up from the meagre 1.5% gain in October, but below the 2.2% average seen during Q3 as a whole. November's gain was driven by an increase in services activity, offsetting weakness in mining. Services have been the key engine of growth in the current cycle and likely will remain so in H1.

06 Jan. 2016 Spotlight Back on the ECB after Soft Eurozone Inflation Data (My Publications)

Disappointing inflation data remain a critical dark spot in the context of otherwise solid evidence of a firming cyclical recovery. Advance data indicate that inflation was unchanged at a mere 0.2% year-over-year in December, with falling food inflation and a dip in services inflation offsetting easing deflation in energy prices. Headline inflation likely will be volatile in coming months. Base effects will push up the year-over-year rate in energy price inflation further in Q1, but we are wary that continued declines in food inflation could offset this effect.

06 Jan. 2016 The Services PMI isn't the Final Word on the Economy's Health (My Publications)

Unanticipated movements in the Markit/CIPS services PMI often provoke big market reactions, despite its shortcomings as an indicator of the pace of growth. We suspect December's PMI, released today, could surprise to the downside, reversing most of its rise in November to 55.9 from 54.9 in October. Regardless, we place more weight on the official data, which is more comprehensive and shows clearly the recovery is slowing.

06 Jan. 2016 ADP Likely to Report Slower December Job Gains - Ignore it (My Publications)

None of today's four monthly economic reports will tell us much new about the outlook, and one of them--ADP employment--will tell us more about the past, but that won't stop markets obsessing over it. We have set out the problems with the ADP number in numerous previous Monitors, but, briefly, the key point is that it is generated from regression models which are heavily influenced by the previous month's official payroll numbers and other lagging data like industrial production, personal incomes, retail and trade sales, and even GDP growth. It is not based solely on the employment data taken from companies which use ADP for payroll processing, and it tends to lag the official numbers.

06 August. 2015 Stabilisation, not Acceleration, in German New Orders Growth (My Publications)

We are wary of a downside surprise in today's German orders, due to weak advance data from the engineering organisation, VDMA. We think factory orders fell 0.5% month-to-month, pushing the year-over-year rate slightly lower to 4.5% in June from 4.7% in May. This is noticeably worse than the market expects, but the consensus forecast for a 0.3% rise implies a jump in the year-over-year rate, which is difficult to reconcile with leading indicators.

05 October. 2016 GDP Inventories Set to be Adjusted to O set Soybean Export Surge (My Publications)

We have written a good deal recently about the likely impact of the sudden explosion of U.S. soybean exports on third quarter GDP growth.

05 October. 2016 Weakness in Brazil Industrial Production will be Temporary (My Publications)

The outlook for Brazil's industrial economy is better than at any time since before the crisis. But data released this week highlighted that the recovery will be slow and bumpy.

06 May. 2015 April ADP Likely Will Look Soft, but it Will Understate Payrolls (My Publications)

Long-time readers will be aware of our disdain fro the ADP employment report, which usually tells us nothing more than that the monthly changes in payrolls tend to mean-revert. That's because the published ADP employment number for each month is generated by regressions which incorporate lagged official payroll data, as well as information from companies which use ADP for payroll processing.

06 May. 2015 Latest Data Enhances Divergent Activity Trends in LatAm (My Publications)

Mexican manufacturing sector kicked off the year on a soft note, due mainly to the sharp drop in oil prices, and the sharp weather-induced slowdown in the U.S. Mexico's northern neighbor is its largest trading partner, by far, accounting for about 85% of total exports last year and close to 80% of total non-oil exports.

07 August. 2015 EZ GDP likely rose 0.4% quarteron- quarter in Q2 due to Ne t Trade (My Publications)

This is the final report before your Eurozone correspondent dials down for the summer, and heads for the beach. Advance Q2 GDP data next week is the key release while we are away, with the latest Bloomberg consensus--published July 20th--looking for a 0.4% increase quarter-on-quarter. Everything we look at suggests the consensus is right on this one, with risks tilted to the upside due to strong net exports in Germany.

07 Jan. 2016 Solid EZ Economic Data Amid Rising Volatility in Equity Markets (My Publications)

Increased volatility has given equity investors a torrid start to the year, but economic reports have been strong, and yesterday's PMIs were no exception. The composite index in the Eurozone rose marginally to 54.3 in December from 54.2 in November, slightly higher than the initial estimate of 54.0. This is consistent with a continuing cyclical recovery, and real GDP growth of 0.4%-to-0.5% in Q4, modestly higher than the 0.3% rise in the third quarter.

06 October. 2016 Markets' Sensitivity to Shifts in ECB Policy Will Increase Further (My Publications)

EZ bond markets were stung earlier this week by a Bloomberg story suggesting that the ECB, in principle, has agreed on a QE exit strategy which involves "tapering" purchases by €10B per month. The story also specified, though, that the central bank has not discussed when tapering will begin.

06 October. 2016 ISM Rebound Points to Stronger Payrolls Later in the Fall (My Publications)

The huge rebound in September's ISM non- manufacturing survey, reported yesterday, strongly supports our view that the August drop was more noise than signal.

06 May. 2015 Monthly Drop in Retail Sales Not Enough to Dent Spending in Q1 (My Publications)

Today's March retail sales report will likely disappoint, despite the already- downbeat consensus forecast of a 0.7% month-to-month fall. We think sales fell 1.2%, equivalent to a 1.3% increase year-over-year, due mostly to the bigger-than-expected 2.3% plunge in German sales, reported too late to be incorporated in the Bloomberg consensus.

06 October. 2016 Steady Growth in the Services Sector Undermines Rate Cut Case (My Publications)

September's Markit/CIPS services survey added to the evidence indicating that GDP growth softened, rather than fell off a cliff, in the third quarter. The activity index edged down only to 52.6, from 52.9 in August.

03 Mar. 2016 A Lower EZ Inflation Target Makes Sense, but Don't Hold Your Breath (My Publications)

Distinguishing between the structural and cyclical story is crucial to understanding the inflation picture in the Eurozone. Nobel laureate Paul Krugman recently lamented--New York Times, March 1st--that the Eurozone economy appears to be stalling. We doubt the outlook for GDP growth this year is that dire.

03 Feb. 2016 Would a Renminbi Depreciation Derail the Pick-up in U.K. Inflation? (My Publications)

Investors are increasingly anxious that an intentional sharp devaluation of the renminbi, aiming to combat China's slowdown, might lead to prolonged deflation in the West, particularly in an economy as open as the U.K.

*June 2017 - U.S.. Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

The Payroll "Slowdown" Won't Last... The Fed Will Hike This Month, and Again Later This Year

*March 2017 - Latin America Chartbook* (My Publications)

Economic Activity Remains Sub-Par... But Downside Risks are Gradually Easing

*March 2017 - U.K. Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

Consumers are buckling under high inflation...but the MPC won't add to their woes by hiking rates

*June 2017 - U.K. Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

Real wage falls are slowing the economy...Fears of rate hikes this year are overblown

*June 2017 - Latin America Chartbook* (My Publications)

LatAm economic activity is stabilizing...but the recovery will be modest in Q3.

*July 2017 - U.S.. Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

The Fed plans to keep on hiking...falling unemployment is the key, not the softer CPI

*June 2017 - EZ Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

The Eurozone Economy Is In Fine Form.. But Don't Believe Everything the ECB is Telling You

*March 2017 - U.S. Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

The Fed Is On Course For Four Hikes This Year...And Another Four In 2018

*May 2017 - EZ Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

The Eurozone optimists are out in numbers...But don't expect economic miracles just yet

*Nov. 2015 - U.S. Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

Focussed on the Macro: The Fed will soon hike, despite soft manufacturing

*Nov. 2016 - Eurozone Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

The EZ Economy entered Q4 on a solid footing...But the Political Uncertainty Looms

*Nov. 2015 - U.K. Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

Recovery shifting to a lower gear...but price pressures will force rate hikes next year

*May 2017 - U.S.. Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

Don't be distracted by weak first quarter GDP...The Fed doesn't care (much)

*May 2017 - Latin America Chartbook* (My Publications)

LatAm fundamentals are improving...but shaky commodity markets highlight threats

*May 2017 - U.K. Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

Rising Inflation has ended the consumer boom...Investment and Trade won't fill the void

*July 2017 - U.K. Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

Growth is too slow to warrant a rate hike...domestically-generated inflation remain weak

*July 2017 - EZ Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

The Eurozone economy is in fine form...but this is likely as good as it gets

*August 2017 - U.K. Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

Sterling's fall is hurting more than it's helping...Slow GDP and wage growth will keep the MPC inactive

*August 2017 - U.S.. Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

Fed tightening is deferred, not cancelled...Expected a December hike after robust fall data

*Dec. 2016 - Eurozone Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

The EZ economy will finish 2016 strongly...but political risks continue to simmer

*August 2017 - Latin America Chartbook* (My Publications)

LatAm domestic demand is stabilizing...fading political risk will help

*August 2017 - EZ Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

The EZ economy finally stretches its legs...but it won't sustain Q1 and Q2 momentum for long

*April 2017 - U.K. Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

Rising Inflation is Causing a Sharp Slowdown...Sterling's Depreciation has been Harmful so Far

*April 2017 - U.S.. Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

The Tightening Labor Market is all that Matters...Expect the Fed to Hike at Each Quarter-End

*Dec. 2016 - U.K.. Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

A Consumer and Investment Slowdown Beckons......Tighter Macro Policy will worsen the downturn

*Dec. 2016 - U.S. Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

Brace for the Fed's Pushback...But only when Fiscal Easing is in front of Congress

*Jan 2017 - U.K. Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

A consumer and investment slowdown beckons...Tighter macro policy will worsen the downturn

*Jan. 2017 - U.S. Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

The Fed is fretting over fiscal easing......upside risk to growth, inflation and interest rates

*Jan 2017 - Eurozone Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

The EZ economy powered ahead in 2016...and is so far oblivious to political risks

*Feb 2017 - U.S. Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

How and when will the Fed respond to Fiscal Easing?

*Feb 2017 - EZ Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

The EZ Economy is in a good Cyclical Shape.. But Can It Shrug off Political Changes in 2017?

*Feb 2017 - U.K. Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

A Consumer slowdown is under way...Policymakers will not provide more stimulus

*Nov. 2016 - U.K.. Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

Exports won't offset a Consumer Slowdown...Sterling decline has Constrained Policymakers

*Nov. 2016 - U.S.. Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

More Public Spending and Higher Rates in 2017...Whoever Wins

01 May. 2015 Upturn in Eurozone Inflation is moderate and slow....For now (My Publications)

Data this week clearly hint at a cyclical trough in Eurozone inflation in the first quarter. The advance estimate for April shows year-over-year inflation rising slightly to zero, up from -0.1% in March.

02 Feb. 2016 EZ Public Spending will Support GDP Growth in 2016 (My Publications)

Economic theory tells us that government spending should be counter-cyclical, but recent experience in the Eurozone tells a slightly different story. The contribution to GDP growth from government spending rose during the boom from 2004 to 2007, and remained expansionary as the economy fell off the cliff in 2008. As the economy slowed again following the initial recovery, the sovereign debt crisis hit, driving a severe pro-cyclical fiscal hit to the economy.

02 Feb. 2016 First Quarter Consumption Will be Better - Weather Effects Will Help (My Publications)

The upward revisions to real consumers' spending in the fourth quarter, coupled with the likelihood of a hefty rebound in spending on utility energy services, means first quarter spending ought to rise at a faster pace than the 2.2% fourth quarter gain. Spending on utilities was hugely depressed in November and December by the extended spell of much warmer-than-usual weather.

01 May. 2015 Fed doves on the defensive as wages break to the upside (My Publications)

The 0.7% first quarter increase in the ECI measure of private sector wages and salaries raised the year-over-year rate to 2.8%, the highest since late 2008 and significantly stronger than the 2.1% increase in hourly earnings in the year to March.

01 May. 2015 Brazil's two-year tightening cycle is over, at least for now (My Publications)

While we were out, monetary policy in Latin America was unchanged, except in Brazil, where the Monetary Policy Committee--Copom--this week raised the Selic rate by 50bp to 13.25%, in line with expectations. Looking ahead, we now expect no changes in policy in Brazil or elsewhere over the next few months, or at least until the Fed starts hiking rates.

01 Mar. 2016 The EZ's Return to Deflation is Misleading, but the ECB Will React (My Publications)

The Eurozone is back in headline deflation, increasing the pressure on the ECB to deliver further easing when it meets next week. Inflation fell to -0.2% in February, from +0.3% in January, depressed by energy and food prices.

01 Mar. 2016 Worst is Over for Manufacturers, but no Real Rebound Yet (My Publications)

The worst is over for manufacturers, we think. The three major forces depressing activity in the sector last year--namely, the strong dollar, the slowdown in China, and the collapse in capital spending in the oil sector--will be much less powerful this year.

02 Feb. 2016 Is the Recovery in Business Investment About to Fizzle Out? (My Publications)

Business investment has been resilient to the slowdown in the wider economy so far, with year-over-year growth in the first three quarters of 2015 averaging a very respectable 6.2%. Outside the oil sector, firms are generating healthy profits and can borrow cheaply.

02 Mar. 2016 Are Falling German Unemployment Claims too Good to be True? (My Publications)

Unemployment in the Eurozone fell to a 22-month low of 10.3% in January, from 10.4% in December, helped by a continued fall in Spain but underpinned by low unemployment in Germany.

03 Feb. 2016 Cyclical Optimism, but Structural Pessimism, on EZ Unemployment (My Publications)

Data yesterday showed that the downward trend in Eurozone unemployment continued towards the end of last year. The unemployment rate fell to 10.4% in December from 10.5% in November, extending an almost uninterrupted decline which began in the first quarter of 2013.

03 Feb. 2016 Industrial Output Dived in Q4, But Reasons For Optimism in Brazil? (My Publications)

Brazil's economic news this week remained bleak at the headline level, but some of the details were less terrible in than in recent months. Industrial production fell by a worse-than-expected 11.9% year-over-year in December, marginally up from the 12.4% drop in November.

03 August. 2015 Core Inflation is a Lagging Indicator - Expect Further Gains (My Publications)

Inflation data in the Eurozone came in broadly as we expected. Weakness in food and energy prices dampened the headline, but core inflation rose. Inflation was unchanged at 0.2% year-over-year in July, with core inflation rising to 1.0% year-over-year, a 15-month high, up from 0.8% in June.

02 Mar. 2016 The Manufacturing PMI Shows that the U.K.'s Slowdown is Homegrown (My Publications)

Further compelling signs that the U.K. has lost its status as one of the fastest growing advanced economies were presented by the Markit/CIPS manufacturing survey, released yesterday. The PMI fell in February to 50.8--its lowest level since April 2013--from 52.9 in January.

02 Mar. 2016 Chile Started the Year on a Soft Note - Mining Still the Main Drag (My Publications)

Chile's weak indicators in January confirm that the economy is struggling. Mining output plunged 12.6% year-over-year, down from a modest 0.6% contraction during Q4, due mostly to falling copper production and an unfavourable base effect. This will reverse in February but we still look for a 5% drop.

02 Mar. 2016 State and Local Government Construction Set to Boost Q1 GDP (My Publications)

Markets reacted strongly to yesterday's consensus-beating data, with the ISM manufacturing survey drawing most of the attention as the industrial recession thesis took another body blow. But we are more interested in the strong construction spending data for January, which set the first quarter off on a very strong note.

01 Mar. 2016 Rising Consumer Debt Puts Pressure on the Bank to Act (My Publications)

British households are back to their old ways and are piling on debt again. With borrowing costs still falling, consumer confidence high and banks willing to lend, indebtedness will only increase unless the Bank of England acts.

01 Feb. 2016 Outlook Improving as Oil Capex Hit Fades and Consumers Step Up (My Publications)

The pitiful 0.7% expansion of the economy in the fourth quarter is not, in our view, a sign of things to come. It is also not, by any means, a definitive verdict on what happened in the fourth quarter; the data are subject to indefinite revision. As they stand, the numbers are impossible to square with the 2.0% annualized increase in payroll employment over the quarter, so our base case has to be that these data will be revised upwards.

*Oct. 2016 - U.S.. Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

The FOMC is split on everything......but a clear majority will vote to hike in December

*Sept. 2015 - Eurozone Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

Ignore the Chinese deflation panic......The cyclical recovery is on track, and inflation is rising

*Sept. 2015 - Latin America Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

China and commodities still hurting Latam....But Brazil has severe domestic woes

*Oct. 2016 - LATAM. Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

Latam activity and markets are improving......but volatility will rise in Q4 due to global factors

*Oct. 2016 - Eurozone. Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

Political certainty is at a premium in the EZ......But Economic data remain resilient

*Oct. 2015 - Eurozone Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

Worries over China and deflation linger...and will likely push the ECB to extend QE this month

*Oct. 2015 - U.S. Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

Focussed on the Macro: The Fed will soon hike, despite soft manufacturing

*Sept. 2015 - U.S. Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

Fed interrupted? But not for long

*September 2017 - EZ Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

The EZ Economy has rarely been in better from...but external risks and policy uncertainty loom.

01 Feb. 2016 Inflation Report Likely to Nudge Markets to Expect an Earlier Hike (My Publications)

With financial markets still turbulent and the Governor stating only two weeks ago that economic conditions do not yet justify a rate hike, the Inflation Report on Thursday will not signal imminent action. Nonetheless, higher medium-term forecasts for inflation are likely to imply that the Committee still envisions raising interest rates this year.

01 Feb. 2016 Mexico's Mining Sector Still a Drag, Services Doing the Work (My Publications)

Mexico's economy lost some momentum in Q4, due mainly to weakness in industrial and agricultural activity, but this was partly offset by the strength of the services sector as consumers' spending again carried the economic recovery. Real GDP rose 0.6% quarter-on-quarter in Q4, after a 0.8% expansion in Q3, the tenth consecutive increase. Year-over-year growth dipped marginally to 2.5% from 2.6% in Q3, but the underlying trend remains stable. In 2015 as a whole the economy expanded by 2.5%, up from 2.3% in 2014.

01 Feb. 2016 Inflation Data Indicate Bund Buyers Should Exercise Caution (My Publications)

Investors were presented with a barrage of mixed EZ economic data on Friday, fighting for attention amid markets celebrating the arrival of negative interest rates in Japan. Advance Eurozone CPI data gave some respite to the ECB, with inflation rising to 0.4% year-over-year in January from 0.2% in December.

*September 2017 - U.S.. Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

Harvey and Irma will shred late q3/q4 data... ...if the fed doesn't hike in December, they will in march

*September 2017 - Latin America Chartbook* (My Publications)

Latam started the second half strongly...But risks remain, politics in particular

*September 2017 - U.K. Economic Chartbook* (My Publications)

The MPC talks up raising bank rate soon...but weak wage growth likely will mean it hesitates

08 Jan. 2016 Expect Robust Jobs Data, but Downside Risk for Wages (My Publications)

The underlying trend in payroll growth is running at about 225K-to-250K, perhaps more, and the leading indicators we follow suggest that's a reasonable starting point for our December forecast. The trend in jobless claims is extraordinarily low and stable--the week-to-week volatility is eye-catching, especially over the holidays, but unimportant--and indicators of hiring remain robust. The unusually warm weather in the eastern half of the country between the November and December survey weeks also likely will give payrolls a small nudge upwards, with construction likely the key beneficiary, as in November.

08 Jan. 2016 Sterling, Not EM Weakness, Will Hold Exports Back (My Publications)

The Chancellor argued in a speech on Thursday that the U.K.'s economic recovery is threatened by a "dangerous cocktail" of overseas risks, including slowing growth in the BRICs--Brazil, Russia, India, and China--and escalating tensions in the Middle East. Exports are set to struggle this year, but the strong pound, not weakness in emerging markets, will be the main drag.

10 February 2017 Dip in German Exports Won't Ruin the Rebound in Q4 as a Whole (My Publications)

German exporters stumbled at the end of last year. The seasonally adjusted trade surplus in Germany dipped to €18.4B in December, from €21.8B in November, hit by a 3.3% month-to-month plunge in exports. Imports were flat on the month. The fall in exports looks dramatic, but it followed a 3.9% jump in the previous month, and nominal exports were up 2.5% over Q4 as a whole. Advance GDP data next week likely will show that net trade lifted quarter-on-quarter growth by 0.2 percentage points, partly reversing the 0.3pp drag in Q3. Real imports were held back by a jump in the import price deflator, due to rebounding oil prices.

10 January 2017 Inflation in Mexico to Jump Above the Target Range, Temporarily (My Publications)

Yesterday's CPI report in Mexico showed that inflation pressures are rising consistently. Headline inflation rose to 3.4% year-over-year in December, from 3.3% in November, above the mid-point of the central bank's 2-to-4% target range. Surging goods inflation and higher services prices--especially seasonal increases for package holidays and airline fares--were mainly to blame.

10 January 2017 Production Likely Surged in November, but Trend Remains Weak (My Publications)

The consensus expectation that industrial production rose by 1.0% month-to-month in November is far too low; we expect Wednesday's data to show a jump of 2.0% or so. The rebound, however, should not be interpreted as another sign that the economy has been revitalised by the Brexit vote. Instead, we expect the rise chiefly to reflect volatility in oil production and heating energy supply.

10 February 2017 Can we Explain Rising Consumer Confidence? What does it Mean? (My Publications)

We have questioned the reliability of the recent consumer confidence numbers, and are very skeptical of their signal that spending is set to accelerate rapidly, but we see no real sign yet of any significant reversal of the post-election spike.

10 February 2017 Brazil's Inflation will Fall Further this Year, Copom to Ease Boldly (My Publications)

Inflation pressures are falling rapidly in Brazil, suggesting that the Copom will continue to ease aggressively in the near term. January's CPI report,released Wednesday, showed that inflation plunged to 5.4% year-over-year, from 6.3% in December, chiefly as a result of continued disinflation in key components, such as food, housing prices--including utilities--and transportation.

10 Feb. 2016 Yellen to Sound Cautious Today, but Can't Ignore the Labor Market (My Publications)

Fed Chair Yellen today needs to strike a balance between addressing investors' concerns over the state of the stock market and the risks posed by slower growth in Asia, and the tightening domestic labor market.

10 February 2017 Still no Sign of a Sustained Trade Boost From Sterling's Depreciation (My Publications)

Today's trade figures likely will continue to show that the benefits from sterling's depreciation are being outweighed by the costs. Exports still are barely growing, but consumers are about to endure a substantial import price shock. The monthly trade deficit has been extremely volatile over the last year, generating a series of excessively upbeat or gloomy headlines. The truth is that the deficit has been on a slightly deteriorating trend, as our first chart shows. We think the trade deficit likely narrowed to £3.8B in December, from £4.2B in November, bringing it closer to its rolling 12-month average of £3.0B.

10 January 2017 The Core Inventory Cycle is Turning, but Q4 Data Likely Won't Show it (My Publications)

For some time now we have argued that collapse in capital spending in the oil sector was the source of most of the softening of activity in the manufacturing and wholesaling sectors last year.

10 January 2017 The German Economy Fired on All Cylinders in the Fourth Quarter (My Publications)

Survey data have been signalling a stronger German economy in the last few months, and hard data are beginning to confirm this story. Data yesterday showed that industrial production rose 0.4% month-to-month in November, pushing the year-over-year rate up to 2.2%, from an upwardly-revised 1.6% in October. The headline was boosted mainly by a 1.5% month-to-month jump in construction and a 0.9% rise in intermediate goods production.

10 July. 2015 In or Out, the Greek Drama Will Reach its Denouement on Sunday (My Publications)

We don't know how Europe will look on Monday. If European officials are to be believed, Greece will either have agreed to bail-out terms to keep it inside the Eurozone, or it will be on its way out. "Deadlines" have come and gone for Greece, but this time really is different, because the banks are bust without further support from the ECB, and that will not be forthcoming without a bail-out deal.

10 July. 2015 June's Inflation Data Underlines Divergent Monetary Paths Ahead (My Publications)

Brazil's central bank has ignored, so far, the severe economic downturn and has continued its aggressive monetary tightening in order to regain credibility and curb stubbornly high inflation. In contrast, Mexico's central bank is in an enviable position, with inflation below target and under control. Its monetary policy is mainly dependent on the Fed's rate normalization.

10 July 2017 Robust Q2 GDP Growth in the Eurozone Likely are in the Bag (My Publications)

Friday's industrial production reports in the Eurozone were sizzling. In Germany, headline output rose 1.2% month-to-month in May--after a downwardly-revised 0.7% rise in April--which pushed the year-over-year rate up to a six-year high of 4.9%.

10 July 2017 PBoC and BoJ Choose Divergent Paths in the Second Half (My Publications)

The two major central banks of Asia have chosen hugely divergent policies. The BoJ has chosen to fix interest rates, while the PBoC appears set on preventing a meaningful depreciation of the currency.

10 July 2017 Banxico Will Start to Mull Lower Interest Rates Early Next Year (My Publications)

Mexico's underlying inflation pressures and financial conditions are gradually stabilizing. Eventually, this will open the door for rate cuts in order to ease the stress on the domestic economy, particularly capex.

10 July 2017 Jobs Gains to Push Unemployment Below 4%, the Fed will Hike Further (My Publications)

The gratifyingly strong 222K headline June payroll gain, if repeated through the second half of the year, will put unemployment below 4% by December.

10 Feb. 2016 Surging Inflation in the Andes Poses Policy Dilemmas (My Publications)

Colombia's January inflation rate easily exceeded BanRep's 2-to-4% target range yet again, jumping to 7.5% from 6.8% in October, the fastest increase since December 2008. This is putting pressure on BanRep to continue tightening, following 150bp rate hikes, to 6.0%, since September.

10 Feb. 2016 No Relief for German Q4 GDP Forecasts in Yesterday's Data (My Publications)

Yesterday's German manufacturing and trade data did little to allay our fears over downside risks to this week's Q4 GDP data. At -1.2% month-to-month in December, industrial production was much weaker than the consensus forecast of a 0.5% increase. Exports also surprised to the downside, falling 1.6% month-to-month. Our GDP model, updated with these data, shows GDP growth fell 0.2%-to-0.3% quarter-on-quarter in Q4, reversing the 0.3% increase in Q3.

10 August. 2015 End of the Tightening Cycle in Brazil, as The Recession Bites? (My Publications)

While we were out, Brazil's Monetary Policy Committee--Copom-- increased the Selic rate by 50bp to 14.25% on July 29th. The short statement indicated that the decision was unanimous and without bias. But it also signaled that the Copom is ready to end the tightening cycle if the data and, especially, the BRL, permit.

10 August. 2015 While We Were Out... (My Publications)

...The Fed told investors that it now requires only "some further improvement" in labor market conditions before starting to raise rates-- the "some" is new--but did not set out any specific conditions. With the unemployment rate now just a tenth above the top of the Fed's Nairu range, 5.0-to-5.2%, and very likely to dip into it by the time of the decision on September 17, while payroll growth is trending solidly above 200K per month, rates already would have been raised some time ago in previous cycles.

10 August. 2016 Surprise Rise in Brazil's Retail Sales, Fundamentals Remain Poor (My Publications)

Brazil's retail sales ended the second quarter on a less-bad footing. Sales volumes increased 0.1% month-to-month in June, pushing the year-over-year rate up to -5.3%, from -9.0% in May. Smoothed year-over-year growth in retail sales has improved to -7% from its cyclical trough of around -9% in the end of last year.

10 August 2017 Core PPI Inflation is Still Trending Upwards, Don't Ignore it (My Publications)

The first of this week's two July inflation reports, the PPI, will be released today. With energy prices dipping slightly between the June and July survey dates, the headline should undercut the 0.2% increase we expect for the core by a tenth or so.

10 August 2017 Chinese Producer Price Inflation is Proving Sticky (My Publications)

Chinese PPI inflation was unchanged at 5.5% in July; it had been expected to rise modestly. Officially, inflation peaked at 7.8% in February, but we think this peak was artificially high, thanks to seasonal effects. The slowing in PPI inflation since the peak appears to suggest that monthly price gains have slowed sharply. We find little evidence to support this.

10 April 2017 Inflation's Rise Likely Arrested in March by this Year's Later Easter (My Publications)

March's consumer price figures, released tomorrow, look set to show that inflation's ascent was kept in check by the later Easter this year compared to last. Nonetheless, CPI inflation will take big upward strides over the coming months, and it likely will exceed 3% by the summer.

10 April 2017 Will the Inflation Dichotomy in the Big LatAm Economies Persist? (My Publications)

Brazilian inflation hit its lowest rate in almost seven years in March, while Mexico's rate is the highest since July 2009. Yet we expect Mexico to tighten policy only modestly in the near term, while Brazil will ease rapidly.

10 August. 2016 Trade Data Show Depreciations Take Time to Boost Growth (My Publications)

June's trade figures yesterday highlighted that it takes more than just a few months for exchange rate depreciations to boost GDP growth. The trade-weighted sterling index dropped by 9% between November and June as the risk of Brexit loomed large and the prospect of imminent increases in interest rates receded.

10 August. 2016 When Rates are Close to Zero, Behavior Changes (My Publications)

Slowly but surely, it is becoming respectable to argue that central bank policy in the developed world is part of the problem of slow growth, not the solution. We have worried for some time that the signal sent by ZIRP--that the economy is in terrible shape--is more than offsetting the cash-flow gains to borrowers.

10 Feb. 2015 Small Firms are Back in Business, But They Can't Find Staff (My Publications)

The headline index in today's NFIB small business survey probably won't quite converge with the ISM manufacturing index, but it will come v ery close. To close the gap completely, for the first time since the crash, the NFIB needs to rise to just over 102, from 100.4.

10 Feb. 2016 Downside Production Surprise to Take its Toll on Sterling (My Publications)

December's industrial production figures, released today, look set to surprise the consensus to the downside, pushing down the pound and increasing the chances that the preliminary estimate of a 0.5% quarter-on-quarter increase in fourth quarter GDP will be revised down.

10 Feb. 2015 German exports are strong, but too dependent on the U.S. and the U.K. (My Publications)

External demand for the Eurozone's largest economy is going from strength to strength. Seasonally adjusted German exports rose 3.4% month-to-month in December, equivalent to a solid 7.5% increase year-over-year.The revised indices show that the annualised surplus rose to an all-time high of €218B, or 7% of GDP, last year, indicating that the level of external savings remains a solid support for the economy.

10 Dec. 2015 Oil Prices to Play Tricks with German Net Exports Again in Q4? (My Publications)

German exports had a sluggish start to the fourth quarter, falling 1.2% month-to-month in October. The monthly drop pushed the year-over-year rate down to 3.0% from 4.2% in September, well down from the 5.6% third quarter average and extending the loss of momentum in recent months. Imports fell 3.6%, so net exports rose, but it's too early to make any useful estimates of net trade in the fourth quarter as a whole.

10 Dec. 2015 Does the Case for Permanently Much Lower Real Rates Stand Up? (My Publications)

Larry Summers stirred the pot yet again with an article in the FT at the weekend, arguing that because the Fed typically eases by more than 300bp to pull the economy out of recession, "the chances are very high that recession will come before there is room to cut rates enough to offset it". This follows from his view that the neutral level of real short rates has fallen so far that "the odds are the Fed will not be able to raise rates 100 basis points a year without threatening to undermine recovery".

10 Dec. 2015 Lower Oil Prices are Only Modestly Positive for the U.K. Economy (My Publications)

The U.K. is one of the smallest winners among advanced economies from the precipitous decline in oil prices. British oil production still fulfils about 55% of the U.K.'s demand, even though it has declined by two-thirds since its 1999 peak. Oil consumption therefore exceeds production by a much smaller margin in the U.K. than in most other European countries. As a result, the boost to the U.K. economy from the $10 decline in oil prices over the last month isn't much to write home about.

10 July. 2015 Last Chance for Common Sense to Prevail in Greece and the EU (My Publications)

Another weekend, another summit, but the sense of urgency is acute this time. Greece, and the rest of the world, will likely have to prepare for Grexit if Mr. Tsipras' final proposal is rebuffed by the EU. We expect a deal, with Greece to remain in the Eurozone, but visibility is limited and uncertainty is high.

10 June. 2015 ECB policies are partly to blame for low bond market liquidity (My Publications)

The last few weeks' action in Eurozone financial markets has shown investors that the QE trade is not a one-way street. Higher short-rates could force the ECB to take preventive measures, but we don't think the central bank will be worried about rising long rates unless they shoot much higher.

10 Nov. 2015 Ignore the Myths About Monetary Policy Turning Points (My Publications)

Some commentators have asserted that the Monetary Policy Committee won't raise interest rates until all its members agree and investors have fully priced in an increase, arguing that an earlier move would create excessive market turmoil and muddy the Committee's message. But a look back to previous turning points in the interest rate cycle suggests that the Monetary Policy Committee--MPC--hasn't paid much heed to those considerations before.

10 Nov. 2015 Trade Data Confirm Our Worst Fears for German Q3 GDP (My Publications)

German trade data yesterday added further evidence that net exports likely will wreak havoc with the Q3 GDP report this week. Exports rose 2.6% month-to-month in September, partially rebounding from a 5.2% plunge in August. But imports jumped 3.6%, further adding to the net trade drag on a quarterly basis. Our first chart shows our estimate of real net trade in Q3 as the worst since the collapse in 2008-to-09.

10 November. 2016 A Trump Victory Means Revisions to EU Leaders' Playbooks (My Publications)

EZ equity futures predictably fell out of bed as the news of the Trump victory gradually became clear overnight yesterday. The reaction was less violent than after the U.K. Brexit referendum, though, and Mr. Trump's balanced victory speech appears to have calmed nerves for now.

10 Nov. 2015 Focus on Older Workers in Jobs Report Misses the Bigger Picture (My Publications)

Investors and market observers of a relatively bearish persuasion argued over the weekend that the details of the October employment report were less encouraging than the headline, principally because the household survey showed that all the job growth, net, was among older workers, defined as people aged 55-plus. This, they argue, suggests that most of the increased demand for labor was concentrated in low-paid service sector jobs, where older workers are concentrated, perhaps reflecting retail hiring ahead of the holidays. Such a wave of hiring is unlikely to be repeated over the next few months, so payroll growth won't be sustained at its October pace.

10 May. 2016 Jump in German Factor Orders do Not Signal the Start of an Upturn (My Publications)

New business in German manufacturing ended the first quarter on a strong note. Factory orders rose 1.9% month-to-month in March, above the consensus 0.6%, and net revisions to the February data were +0.4 percentage points. The rise in new orders was exclusively due to a 4.3% increase in export orders, which offset a 1.2% fall in domestic orders. These are strong numbers, but the details suggest that mean reversion will push the headline down next month.

10 May 2017 The Budget Deficit is Rising, even Before any Unfunded Tax Cuts (My Publications)

The CBO reckons that the April budget surplus jumped to about $179B, some $72B more than in the same month last year. This looks great, but alas all the apparent improvement reflects calendar distortions on the spending side of the accounts.

10 May. 2016 Do Falling Earnings Signal a Rollover in Payroll Gains? (My Publications)

In the wake of the payroll report on Friday, several readers sent us a version of the chart reproduced below, showing the rates of growth of S&P earnings and private sector payrolls. The message from the chart appears to be that the current trend in payroll growth, a bit over 200K per month cannot be sustained.

10 November. 2016 How Far Will Trump Loosen Fiscal Policy? And How Will the Fed React? (My Publications)

Note: This updates our initial post-election thoughts, adding more detail to the fiscal policy discussion. Apologies for the density of the text, but there's a lot to say. Our core conclusions have not changed since the election result emerged. The biggest single economic policy change, by far, will be on the fiscal front.

10 November. 2016 Market Reaction to Trump Shows Britain is No Longer a Safe-haven (My Publications)

Donald Trump's victory casts a shadow of political uncertainty over what had appeared to be a decent outlook for the U.S economy. The U.K.'s trade and financial ties with the U.S., however, are small enough to mean that any downturn on the other side of the Atlantic will have little impact on Britain.

10 Sept. 2015 Wage Cuts Pay off as Periphery Leads EZ Employment Higher (My Publications)

Workers in the euro area remain scarred by the zone's repeated crises, but the strengthening cyclical recovery is slowly starting to spread to the labour market. The unemployment rate fell to a three-year low of 10.9% in July, and employment has edged higher after hitting a low in the middle of 2013. Germany's outperformance is a key story, with employment increasing uninterruptedly since 2009, and the unemployment rate declining to an all-time low of 6.4%. Among the other major economies, the unemployment rate in Spain and Italy remains higher than in France. But employment in Spain has outperformed in the cyclical recovery since 2013.

11 Apr. 2016 Economic Weakness Starting To Reduce Inflation in Brazil and Chile (My Publications)

Brazil's March report reinforced recent evidence indicating that inflation is decelerating. The headline CPI surprised to the downside again, slowing to a nine-month low of 9.4% year-over-year from 10.4% in February. The index rose 2.6% quarter-to-quarter in Q1, well below the 3.8% increase in the same period last year.

10 Sept. 2015 Soaring Job Openings Signal Further Labor Market Tightening (My Publications)

We expected a modest correction in the number of job openings in July, following the surge over the previous few months, but instead yesterday's JOLTS report revealed that openings jumped by a mind-boggling 8.1% to a new record high. In the three months to July, the number of openings soared at a 35% annualized rate. As a result, the Beveridge Curve, which compares the number of openings to the unemployment rate, is now further than ever from normalizing after shifting out decisively in 2010.

10 October. 2016 Mexican Consumption is Slowing, as the External Picture Improves (My Publications)

Mexican economic growth was subdued during the first half of the year, and we expect it to remain weak over the coming months. The economy has been held back largely by external headwinds, especially low oil prices and disruptions to activity in the US, its main trading partner.

10 October. 2016 EURGBP close to parity will sting EZ trade surplus (My Publications)

The euro has been one of the main "beneficiaries" of the pound's relentless decline, which took on ridiculous dimensions as the GBP crashed almost 10% in the early hours of Friday. EURGBP briefly touched 0.94, before settling at 0.9, up just shy of 30% since November.

10 October. 2016 The Sterling Crisis has Tied Policymakers' Hands (My Publications)

The U.K.'s dependence on large inflows of external finance was laid alarmingly b are last week, when "hard" Brexit talk by politicians caused overseas investors to give sterling assets a wide berth. Investors now are demanding extra compensation for holding U.K. assets, because the medium-term outlook is so uncertain.

10 May 2017 Mexico's Confidence Indicators are Improving, but Headwinds Remain (My Publications)

Market participants and analysts have gradually softened their cautious stance towards Mexico, as concerns about the new U.S. administration's trade and immigration policies have eased, and risks of a credit rating downgrade have lessened.

10 May 2017 German GDP Growth Likely Accelerated in the First Quarter (My Publications)

Yesterday's economic data in Germany cemented the story of a strong start to the year, despite the disappointing headlines. Industrial production slipped 0.4% month-to-month in March, pushing the year-over-year rate down to +1.9% from a revised +2.0% in February.

10 June. 2016 Nominal Corporate Sales Set to Rebound, Supporting Stock Prices (My Publications)

For some time now we have argued that the forces which have depressed business capex--the collapse in oil prices, the strong dollar, and slower growth in China--are now fading, and will soon become neutral at worst. As these forces dissipate, the year-over-year rate of growth of capex will revert to the prior trend, about 4-to-6%. We have made this point in the context of our forecast of faster GDP growth, but it also matters if you're thinking about the likely performance of the stock market.

10 Mar. 2015 Can the Uptick in New Home Sales be Sustained? (My Publications)

The key labor market numbers from today's February NFIB report on small businesses--hiring intentions and the proportion of firms with unfilled job openings--were released last week, as usual, ahead of the official jobs report.

10 Mar. 2015 Don't Panic Over Fall in German Exports, Trend is Still Firm (My Publications)

The 12-month average German trade surplus continues to set records, rising to €18.2B in January, but exports started the quarter on a weak note, falling 2.1% month-to-month in January, equivalent to a mere 1.9% rise year-over-year.

10 June. 2016 Falling Real Imports Will Lift German Net Trade in Q2 (My Publications)

Germany's external balance was virtually stable at the beginning of the second quarter. The seasonally adjusted trade surplus rose marginally to €23.9B in April from a revised €23.7B in March, mainly due to weakness in imports. Demand for goods abroad fell 0.2% month-to-month, which pushed up the surplus despite amid unchanged exports. Imports fell 1.5% year-over-year in April, up slightly from a 2.5% decline in March.

10 June. 2016 Brazil's Copom Waiting For New Chief, and Inflation to Fall Again (My Publications)

Brazil's interim government has been trying to put the kibosh on the vicious circle of recession, capital outflows, and political pandering that has dogged the country for so long. In his first few weeks at the helm, despite the political turmoil, Mr. Temer has started to tackle Brazil's fiscal mess, the country's biggest headache.

10 June. 2015 Inflation In Mexico Falls Below the Target - No Rush to Increase Rates (My Publications)

Mexico's headline inflation fell to a record low of 2.9% in May, down from 3.1% in April and below the middle of Banxico's inflation target, 2-to-4%, for the first time since May 2005. C ore inflation was unchanged at 2.3% in May; higher services prices were offset by a slowing in the rate of increase of goods prices to 2.4% from 2.7% in April, confirming that the pass-through effect from the MXN's depreciation has been very limited.

10 June. 2015 Tightening Labor market pushing up small firms' pricing plans? (My Publications)

The May NFIB survey and the April JOLTS report, both released yesterday, paint a coherent, if not yet definitive, picture of labor market developments which should alarm the Fed. The data suggest that the true labor supply, in the eyes of potential employers, is much smaller than implied by the BLS's measures of broad unemployment.

10 Mar. 2016 Another Month, Another Round of Monetary Easing from the ECB (My Publications)

The stakes are raised ahead of today's ECB meeting after the central bank's pledge in January to "review and reassess" its policy stance. Since then, survey data have weakened, inflation has fallen and volatility in financial markets has increased. The ECB likely will act accordingly and deliver a boost to monetary stimulus today.

10 Mar. 2016 Calendar Distortions Plague the Hours Data, Not Just Wages (My Publications)

We've had some correspondence questioning our view on the "weakness" of February hourly earnings, which we firmly believe were depressed by a persistent calendar quirk. Almost nine times in 10 over the past decade, when the 15th of the month has fallen after the week of the 12th--the payroll survey week--the monthly gain in wages has undershot the prior trend.

10 March 2017 Evidence of a Brazilian Business Cycle Recovery this Year is Building (My Publications)

Brazil's industrial sector had a relatively good start to the year. Data on Wednesday showed that production fell 0.1% month-to-month in January, less than markets expected, and the year-over-year rate rose to 1.4%, after a 0.1% drop in December.

10 May 2017 April's Surge in Retail Sales Isn't a Turning Point (My Publications)

April's Retail Sales Monitor from the British Chambers of Commerce, released yesterday, provided a powerful signal that households' spending rebounded in April, following a terrible Q1.

10 March 2017 Don't Take the Public Borrowing Forecasts at Face Value (My Publications)

Investors in the gilt market would be wise not to take the new official projections for borrowing and debt issuance at face value. The forecast for the Government's gross financing requirement between 2017/18 and 2021/22 was lowered to £625B in the Budget, from £646B in the Autumn Statement.

10 March 2017 A Guide to ECB Speak: Getting Better, but We're not Done Yet (My Publications)

The ECB made no major policy changes yesterday. The central bank kept its refinancing and deposit rates unchanged at 0.00% and -0.4% respectively, and the scheduled reduction in the pace of QE to €60B per month was confirmed. The core part of the central bank's language retained its dovish bias.

10 Mar. 2016 Wage Growth Poised to Revive, Regardless of Immigration (My Publications)

Amid the intensifying debate about the pros and cons of E.U. membership, higher immigration from the rest of Europe often is blamed for the disappointing weakness of wage growth over the last couple of years. But we see little evidence to support that hypothesis.

10 March 2017 February Payrolls Look set for Strength, Seasonals Permitting (My Publications)

We're expecting a hefty increase in February payrolls today, but even a surprise weak number likely wouldn't prevent a rate hike next week. The trends in all the private sector employment surveys are strong and improving, and jobless claims have dropped to new lows too, though we think that's probably less important than it appears.

10 April 2017 Falling Unemployment Matters More than the Weather-hit Jobs Number (My Publications)

The BLS offered no estimate of the impact on payrolls of the snowstorm which hit the Northeast during the March survey week, but it appears to have been substantial. All the leading indicators pointed to a solid 200K-plus reading, more than double the official initial estimate, 98K.

10 Apr. 2015 Bond duration in the Eurozone is being crushed by sovereign QE (My Publications)

The distortions in European fixed income markets have intensified following the initiation of the ECB's sovereign QE program. In the market for sovereigns, German eight-year bond yields are within a touching distance of falling below zero, and this week Switzerland became the first country ever to issue a 10-year bond with negative yields.

1 Dec. 2015 Bund Buyers Beware Higher German inflation Next Year (My Publications)

Advance data indicate German inflation rose to 0.4% year-over-year in November, up from 0.3% in October, lifted by higher food and energy price inflation. The upward trend in food prices won't last, but base effects in energy prices will persist, boosting headline inflation significantly in coming months. The details show that services inflation was stable at 1.2% last month, despite state data indicating a fall in volatile leisure and entertainment inflation, while net rent inflation was also stable, at 1.1%.

1 Dec. 2015 Plunging Oil Prices Shift Income to Consumers From Producers (My Publications)

The big story in global macro over the past 18 months or so has been the gigantic transfer of income from oil producers to oil consumers. The final verdict on the net impact of this shift--worth nearly $2T at an annualized rate--is not yet clear, because the boost to consumption takes longer than the hit to oil firms ' capex, which began to collapse just a few months after prices began to fall sharply. But our first chart, which shows oil production by country as a share of oil consumption, plotted against the change in real year-over-year GDP growth between Q2 2014 and Q2 2015, tells a clear story.

1 Dec. 2015 The Real Net Trade Drag on U.K. Growth is Still to Come (My Publications)

It's tempting to conclude from the third quarter's GDP figures, which showed output rising 0.5% quarter-on-quarter, despite a record drag from net trade, that the U.K. economy is comfortably weathering sterling's appreciation. But a closer look at the data shows the net trade drag is the counterparty to some erratic inventory movements. The real net trade hit is still to come.

1 Dec. 2014 Eurozone Inflation Squeezed Down from All Sides (My Publications)

Inflation data last week confirmed that the spectre of deflation is slowly but surely encroaching on the euro area. In Germany, inflation slipped to 0.6% year-over- year in November, from 0.8% in October, and in the Eurozone as a whole the he adline rate declined to 0.3%, from 0.4% in September.

1 August. 2016 Negative Interest Rates Won't Be Part of the MPC's Policy Response (My Publications)

The collapse in business activity and consumer confidence since the referendum has sealed the deal on policy easing from the MPC on Thursday. The Committee has cut Bank Rate by 50 basis points when the composite PMI has been near July's level in the past, as our first chart shows.

1 August 2017 Money Data Show Diverging Household and Corporate Fortunes (My Publications)

The latest money and credit data highlight that the financial fortunes of firms and households have begun to differ markedly. Private non- financial corporations--PNFCs--are enjoying strong growth in their broad money holdings. The 1.2% month-to-month increase in PNFC's M4 was the largest rise since August 2016, and it lifted the year- over-year growth rate to 9.3%, from 9.0% in May.

1 August. 2016 EZ GDP Growth Slowed in Q2, and Likely Will be Revised Down (My Publications)

Friday's data deluge suggests that EZ economic growth slowed less than we expected in the second quarter. The advance estimate indicates that real GDP in the euro area rose 0.3% quarter-on-quarter in Q2, down from a 0.6% jump in the first quarter. This was in line with the consensus, but it likely doesn't tell the whole story.

1 December. 2016 Banks are in Better Health, But Debt Levels Still Pose Risks (My Publications)

The Bank of England's stress tests highlighted that banks have made further progress in strengthening their balance sheets over the last year. But while banks have retreated from taking risk onto their balance sheets, others have stepped in to fill the void.

1 December. 2016 Higher EZ Inflation Won't Prevent the ECB from Extending QE (My Publications)

Inflation in the Eurozone rose modestly last month. Yesterday's advance CPI report showed the headline rate rising to 0.6% year-over-year in November, from 0.5% in October, mainly because of a jump in fresh food inflation. Energy prices fell 1.1% year-over-year, slightly more than the 0.9% decline in October, but we expect a sharp increase over the next six months.

1 February 2017 The EZ Economy Finished 2016 Strongly, and Q1 Outlook is Solid (My Publications)

Yesterday was a good day for headline EZ economic data. GDP growth accelerated, inflation rose and unemployment fell further. Advance Q4 data showed that real GDP in the Eurozone rose 0.5% quarter-on-quarter in Q4, marginally faster than the upwardly revised 0.4% in Q3. Full-year growth in 2016 slowed slightly to 1.7% from 2.0% in 2015.

1 July. 2015 LatAm Markets Threatened by the Deepening Greek Crisis (My Publications)

A mix of political and economic events have triggered outflows of capital from emerging markets this year. Tensions in Europe, due to the "Grexit" saga, together with China's slowdown and concerns about Fed lift-off have weighed on EM flows. In recent months, though, some of the pressure on EM currencies has eased as the markets have come to expect fewer U.S. rate hikes in the near term.

1 February 2017 Sharp Slowdown in Money Growth Consistent with Weaker 2017 GDP (My Publications)

December's money data brought clear signs that the economy's growth spurt in the second half of 2016 is about to come to an abrupt end. Growth in households' money holdings and borrowing slowed sharply in December, and the pick-up in corporate borrowing shortly after the MPC cut interest rates and announced corporate bond purchases, in August, has run out of steam already.

1 February 2017 Mexico's Economy Was Strong in Q4, but the Outlook has Darkened (My Publications)

Yesterday's first estimate of full-year 2016 GDP in Mexico indicates that growth gathered momentum over the second half of last year. But risks are now tilted to the downside, following the U.S. election. GDP rose 0.6% quarter-on-quarter in Q4, after a 1.0% increase in Q3. Growth was much slower in the firs t half, as shown in our char t below.

1 December. 2016 ISM Set to Show that Manufacturing is Recovering, Albeit Slowly (My Publications)

We have lost count of the number of times the drop in the ISM manufacturing survey, in the wake of the plunge in oil prices, was a harbinger o f recession across the whole economy. It wasn't, because the havoc wreaked in the industrial economy by the collapse in capital spending in the oil sector was contained.

1 February 2017 Expect a Slightly More Hawkish FOMC Tone, to Keep March Alive (My Publications)

We're expecting the FOMC to vote unanimously not raise rates today, but we do expect a modestly hawkish tilt in the statement. Specifically, we're expecting an acknowledgment of the upturn in business investment reported in the Q4 GDP data, and of the increase in market-based measures of inflation expectations, given that 10-year TIPS breakevens are now above 2% for the first time since September 2014.

1 August 2017 Chinese Second Half Looking Increasingly Stagflationary (My Publications)

China's official manufacturing PMI, published on Monday, implies the industrial complex has maintained momentum going into Q3. The official manufacturing PMI moderated slightly to 51.4 in July from 51.7 in June. The July reading was unchanged from the average in Q2 and only modestly down from the 51.6 in Q1.

1 Apr. 2015 Tightening Bias Remains as Chile's Inflation Forecast is Increased (My Publications)

Chile's economic sector survey, released on Monday, provides further evidence that the cyclical recovery in the economy continues, albeit at a moderate pace. On the demand side, the rebound is still in place, with retail sales jumping 2.0% month-to-month in February and the underlying trend firm.

08 May. 2015 Brazil's Weak Growth Not Sufficient to Stop the Tightening Process (My Publications)

This week's hard data confirmed the bleak situation of Brazil's industrial sector, signalled over the last few months by key leading indicators such as the PMI manufacturing and the CNI business confidence surveys. March industrial production fell by 0.8% month-to-month and 3.5% year-over-year, following a downwardly-revised 9.4% contraction in February.

08 May. 2015 French GDP Next Week Should Comfortably Beat Expectations (My Publications)

The headline 0.9% month-to-month increase in German factory orders--a 1.9% increase year-over-year-- is not enough to change the picture of an overall sluggish first quarter.

08 May. 2015 Payroll Set to Rebound In April - a Return to the 275K Trend? (My Publications)

In the wake of the soft-looking ADP employment report released on Wednesday, the true consensus for today's official payroll number likely is lower than the 230K reported in the Bloomberg survey. As we argued in the Monitor yesterday, though, we view ADP as a lagging indicator and we don't use it is as a forecasting tool.

08 Mar. 2016 Will German Manufacturing Continue to Flatline in Q1? (My Publications)

Yesterday's German factory orders data suggest that manufacturing remained weak in the beginning of Q1. New orders fell 0.1% month-to-month in January, though the year-over-year rate rose to 1.1% from a revised -2.2% in December. The small monthly decline was due to a fall in domestic orders; this offset an increase in export orders to other Eurozone economies.