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23 Aug 2019 Chair Powell will Struggle to Meet Market Expectations Today (Publication Centre)

It's going to be very hard for Fed Chair Powell's Jackson Hole speech today to satisfy markets, which now expect three further rate cuts by March next year.

U.S. Datanote: Chair Powell Speech (Publication Centre)

In one line: The Fed will use its room for maneuver to ease again next month, but the data don't justify aggressive rate cuts.

1 May 2019 What Will Chair Powell say About Strong Q1 Growth and Low Inflation (Publication Centre)

The FOMC meeting today will be a non-event from a policy perspective but we are very curious to see what both the written statement and the Chair will have to say about the unexpected strength of the economy in the first quarter.

U.S. Datanote: Fed Chair Powell Monetary Policy Testimony (Publication Centre)

In one line: No pushback on the July ease, but it's still a bad idea.

4 March 2019 Does the Flatter Phillips Curve Mean the Next Downturn will be Severe (Publication Centre)

Investors focussed last week on Chair Powell's semi-annual Monetary Policy Testimony, but he said nothing much new.

5 February 2019 Six Days Later, We're Still Struggling to Make Sense of the Fed's Thinking (Publication Centre)

We very much doubt that Fed Chair Powell dramatically changed his position last week because President Trump repeatedly, and publicly, berated him and the idea of further increases in interest rates.

9 Oct 2019 The Fed will Buy Bills, but not Enough "Materially" to Shift its Policy Stance (Publication Centre)

Fed Chair Powell did not specify how many bills the Fed will buy in order boost bank reserves sufficiently to remove the strain in funding markets, but we'd expect to see something of the order of $500B.

29 November 2018 Powell Says the Funds Rate is Just Below... Well, What, Exactly (Publication Centre)

The stock market loved Fed Chair Powell's remarks on the economy yesterday, specifically, his comment that rates are now "just below" neutral.

10 July 2019 Powell to Stick to the Party Line. Will he Mention the Trimmed Mean PCE? (Publication Centre)

We'd be surprised to see any serious shift in the tone of Fed Chair Powell's semi-annual Monetary Policy Testimony today compared to the FOMC statement and press conference just three weeks ago.

5 June 2019 The Fed will Ease if Trade Makes the Sky Fall in Otherwise, Patience (Publication Centre)

Fed Chair Powell yesterday said about as little as he could without appearing to ignore the turmoil in markets since the President announced his intention to apply tariffs to imports from Mexico: "We are closely monitoring the implications of these developments for the U.S. economic outlook and, as always, we will act as appropriate to sustain the expansion, with a strong labor market and inflation near our symmetric 2 percent objective."

18 July 2018 Powell Says Everything's on Track Gradual Hike to Continue, "for now" (Publication Centre)

Fed Chair Powell delivered no great surprises in his semi-annual Monetary Policy Testimony yesterday, but he did hint, at least, at the idea that interest rates might at some point have to rise more quickly than shown in the current dot plot: "... the FOMC believes that - for now - the best way forward is to keep gradually raising the federal funds rate [our italics]."

17 July 2018 Powell Set to Re-affirm the "Gradual" Approach to Rates, for Now (Publication Centre)

Fed Chair Powell's semi-annual Monetary Policy Testimony today will likely re-affirm that policymakers still think "gradual" rate hikes are appropriate and that the risks to the economy remain "roughly balanced".

11 July 2019 Only a Run of Very Strong Numbers Now Could Stop the Fed this Month (Publication Centre)

At least some investors clearly were expecting Fed Chair Powell yesterday to offer a degree of resistance to the idea that a rate cut at the end o f this month is a done deal.

2 May 2019 Powell Pushes Back on Low Q1 Inflation Fed Base Case Unchanged (Publication Centre)

The Fed yesterday acknowledged clearly the new economic information of recent months, namely, that first quarter GDP growth was "solid", with Chair Powell noting that it was stronger than most forecasters expected.

20 June 2019 All Eyes on Osaka, if the Trade Talks Succeed, the Fed Won't Ease in July (Publication Centre)

The tone of Fed Chair Powell's opening comments at the press conference yesterday was much more dovish than the statement, which did little more than most analysts expected.

26 September 2018 The Fed Must Keep Hiking as the Labor Market Keeps Tightening (Publication Centre)

It would be astonishing if the Fed doesn't raise rates today, and Chair Powell is not in the astonishment business; they will hike by 25bp.

27 February 2019 More Patience from Powell, Despite the Recovery in the Stock Market (Publication Centre)

Fed Chair Powell's semi-annual Monetary Policy Testimony yesterday broke no new ground, largely repeating the message of the January 30 press conference.

27 September 2018 Fed Confirms December Rate Hike (Publication Centre)

The Fed is on course to hike again in December, with 12 of the 16 FOMC forecasters expecting rates to end the year 25bp higher than the current 2-to-21⁄4%; back in June, just eight expected four or more hikes for the year.

30 April 2019 Three Soft Core PCE Deflator Numbers Don't Make a Trend (Publication Centre)

It's pretty easy to spin a story that the recent core PCE numbers represent a sharp and alarming turn south.

28 February 2019 Expect Underwhelming Q4 GDP Growth Data Today Q1 Likely Worse (Publication Centre)

We expect to learn today that the economy expanded at a 2.1% annualized rate in the fourth quarter, slowing from 3.4% in the third.

28 June 2019 Downside Risk for the core PCE Deflator, Again, Expect H2 Rebound (Publication Centre)

The downshift in core PCE inflation this year has unnerved the Fed, along with the intensification of the trade war and slower global growth.

27 March 2019 Can the Fed Engineer Sustained Non-in ationary Wage Growth (Publication Centre)

The Fed wants price stability--currently defined as 2% inflation--and maximum sustainable employment.

3 June 2019 Trade is Now Trump's Weapon for Everything, but it Shoots Backwards (Publication Centre)

The chance of a self-inflicted, unnecessary weakening in the economy this year, and perhaps even a recession, has increased markedly in the wake of the president's announcement on Friday that tariffs will be applied to all imports from Mexico, from June 10.

3 Sept 2019 If China Doesn't Budge as Tariffs Rise, Mr. Trump will Blink, Eventually (Publication Centre)

After a week--yes, a whole week!--with no significant new developments in the trade war with China--it's worth stepping back and asking a couple of fundamental questions, which might give us some clues as to what will happen over the months ahead.

23 May 2019 Patience to Persist FOMC Members Content to Wait for Developments (Publication Centre)

It's hard to read the minutes of the April 30/May 1 FOMC meeting as anything other than a statement of the Fed's intent to do nothing for some time yet.

22 March 2018 Strong Growth, Gradual Hikes, and Only a bit of Inflation, Here's Hoping (Publication Centre)

The most striking feature of the Fed's new forecasts is the projected overshoot in core PCE inflation at end-2019 and end-2020, which fits our definition of "persistent".

22 May 2019 The MPC Won't Be "Indifferent" if Sterling Falls Further (Publication Centre)

On a trade-weighted basis, sterling has dropped by only 1.5% since the start of the month, but it is easy to envisage circumstances in which it would fall significantly further.

30 January 2019 Slightly Softer Language from the Fed, but no Hints of Easing (Publication Centre)

Today's FOMC meeting will be the first non-forecast meeting to be followed by a press conference.

22 May 2019 How Much Attention is the Fed Paying to the Trimmed Mean PCE (Publication Centre)

Fed policymakers surprised no one with their May 1 statement, which acknowledged the surprisingly "solid " Q1 economic growth--at the time of the March 19-to-20 meeting, the Atlanta Fed's GDPNow model suggested Q1 growth would be just 0.6%--but stuck to its view that low inflation means the FOMC can be "patient".

26 February 2019 The Impending China Trade Deal will Pose Questions for the Fed (Publication Centre)

A trade deal with China is in sight. President Trump tweeted Sunday that the planned increase in tariffs on $200B of Chinese imports to 25% from 10%, due March 1, has been deferred--no date was specified-- in light of the "substantial progress" in the talks.

25 March 2019 The Fundamentals are at Odds with the Curve, no Recession Near (Publication Centre)

The commentariat was very excited Friday by the inversion of the curve, with three-year yields dipping to 2.24% while three-month bills yield 2.45%.

26 July 2019 The Inevitable Q2 Slowdown Leaves H1 Growth at 21⁄2%, at the Trend (Publication Centre)

We're nudging down our estimate of Q2 GDP growth, due today, by 0.3 percentage points to 1.8%, in the wake of yesterday's array of data.

7 November 2017 JOLTS Report will Confirm that Labor Demand is Rising Strongly (Publication Centre)

No single measure of labor demand is always a reliable leading indicator of the official payroll numbers, which is why we track an array of private and official measures.

8 May 2019 Financial Services have Depressed the Core PCE Expect a Rebound (Publication Centre)

A steep drop in prices for financial services in January was a key factor behind the sharp slowdown in the rate of increase of the core PCE deflator in the first quarter, relative to the core CPI.

8 April 2019 Payroll Gains set to be Close to 200K in Q2 Labor Market Still Tightening (Publication Centre)

The return to normal in the March payroll numbers, with a 196K headline increase, is another nail in the coffin of the "imminent recession" theory.

9 February 2018 Congress Set to Spray Yet More Fuel on the Fire, Over to You, Mr. Powell (Publication Centre)

The budget sequestration process, which cut discretionary government spending by a total of $114B in fiscal 2013 and fiscal 2014, was one of the dumbest things Congress has done in recent years.

9 October 2018 Risks to the Consensus for August GDP Lie to the Upside (Publication Centre)

We expect August's GDP figures, released on Wednesday, to show that month-to-month growth slowed to 0.1%, from 0.3% in July.

9 Sept 2019 The Trade War is Hurting Payroll Growth will Slow Further (Publication Centre)

Payroll growth in September and October probably won't be materially worse than August's meager 96K increase in private jobs.

9 October 2018 September Payrolls Hit by Florence (Publication Centre)

The dip in payroll growth in September was due to Hurricane Florence. We expect a clear rebound in payrolls in October; our tentative forecast is 250K.

22 Aug 2019 The Fed's July Differences of Opinion Won't Prevent a September Easing (Publication Centre)

It would be easy to characterize the Fed as quite split at the July meeting.

7 June 2019 Job Gains Likely Slowed Sharply in May, but will Recover (Publication Centre)

In the wake of Wednesday's ADP report, showing a mere 27K increase in private payrolls, we cut our payroll forecast to 100K.

31 May 2019 The Rebound in the Core PCE Deflator Likely Started in April (Publication Centre)

The biggest surprise in the revisions to first quarter GDP growth, released yesterday, was in the core PCE deflator.

31 January 2019 Powell Says No Fed Put, but Stocks Jump and the Curve Steepens (Publication Centre)

The FOMC has gone all-in, more or less, on the idea that the headwinds facing the economy mean that the hiking cycle is over.

4 September 2018 Is Fear of Further Tariffs Boosting Capex and Inventory-Building? (Publication Centre)

While we were out, most of the core domestic economic data were quite strong, with the exception of the soft July home sales numbers and the Michigan consumer sentiment survey.

6 February 2019 Japan will be Hard Pressed to Maintain Above-Trend Growth in Q1 (Publication Centre)

The Nikkei services PMI for Japan partly rebounded in January, to 51.6, after it fell sharply to 51.0 in December.

7 January 2019 Job Growth will Slow in Q1, but it Won't Collapse, AHE is Accelerating (Publication Centre)

If our composite index of businesses' hiring plans could speak, it would say: "Told you payrolls were going to go nuts at the end of the year."

6 May 2019 Payrolls Can't Sustain April's Pace, but Unemployment will Keep Falling (Publication Centre)

It would be astonishing if the May and June payroll numbers looked much like April's strong data, at least in the private sector.

30 Oct 2019 The Fed will Ease Today, but will Signal a Pause Unless Growth Tanks (Publication Centre)

The stage is set for the Fed to ease by 25bp today, but to signal that further reductions in the funds rate would require a meaningful deterioration in the outlook for growth or unexpected downward pressure on inflation.

19 July 2019 Talk of Downside Inflation Risk will be Muted by September (Publication Centre)

The spike in the May core CPI, and its likely echo in the core PCE, won't stop the Fed easing at the end of this month.

13 Nov 2019 Used Car Prices Pose an Upside Threat to the October Core CPI (Publication Centre)

The consensus forecast for the October core CPI, which will be reported today, is 0.2%. Take the over. Nothing is certain in these data, but the risk of a 0.3% print is much higher than the chance of 0.1%.

13 May 2019 Inflation in Rents and Other Services is Rising, Further Gains Ahead (Publication Centre)

The core CPI inflation rate rose in April to 2.1% from 2.0%, thanks to unfavorable rounding, despite the below consensus 0.14% month-to-month print.

13 Sept 2019 Core Inflation is Set to Breach 21⁄2% by Year-End Breakevens have to Rise (Publication Centre)

The third straight 0.3% increase in the core CPI-- that hasn't happened since 1995--was ignored by the Treasury market yesterday, which appeared to be focusing its attention on the ECB.

14 June 2018 Four Dots for 2018, and a Hawkish Tilt in the Statement (Publication Centre)

The Fed was more hawkish than we expected yesterday.

21 March 2019 The Fed is Safe Until the Second Half then all Bets are Off (Publication Centre)

Now that the Fed has abandoned the idea of raising rates this year, despite 3.8% unemployment and accelerating wages, it is very exposed to the risk that the bad things it fears don't happen.

14 Nov 2019 Healthcare Inflation is Gathering Steam How Far will it Rise (Publication Centre)

It's hard to know what to make of the October CPI data, which recorded hefty increases in healthcare costs and used car prices but a huge drop in hotel room rates, and big decline in apparel prices, and inexplicable weakness in rents.

12 July 2019 June's Core CPI Makes it Clear that a 50bp Ease is an Unnecessary Risk (Publication Centre)

Monthly core CPI prints of 0.3% are unusual; June's was the first since January 2018, so it requires investigation.

12 February 2018 The Next Round of Data Likely Will Dampen Inflation Fears, For a Time (Publication Centre)

It's hard to know what will stop the correction in the stock market, but we're pretty sure that robust economic data--growth, prices and/or wages--over the next few weeks would make things worse.

10 June 2019 Don't Expect the MPC to Follow in Other Central Banks' Footsteps (Publication Centre)

Interest rate expectations continued to fall sharply last week.

1 July 2019 Trade Talks Back on, this Time, Expect a Deal, Both Sides Need One (Publication Centre)

The outcome of the Trump-Xi meeting at the G20 summit was as good as we expected.

10 May 2019 Underlying Core Inflation is Stable, Despite the Weak Q1 Core PCE (Publication Centre)

On the face of it, our forecast of higher core inflation by the end of this year is seriously challenged by the recent data.

11 February 2019 Is the Accelerating Fall in Bank Reserves a Real Problem for the Fed? (Publication Centre)

The rundown of the Fed's balance sheet has proceeded in line with the plans laid out b ack in June 2017.

11 June 2018 The Fed will Hike this Week, but Likely will Hold Back the Fourth Dot (Publication Centre)

The Fed will raise rates by 25 basis points on Wednesday, but as usual after a widely-anticipated policy decision, most of our attention will be focused on what policymakers say about their actions, and how their views on the economy have changed.

15 May 2019 Q2 Consumption on Course for 3%, Despite Auto Drag on April Retailing (Publication Centre)

The gap between the official measure of the rate of growth of core retail sales and the Redbook chainstore sales numbers remains bafflingly huge, but we have no specific reason to expect it to narrow substantially with the release of the April report today.

15 February 2018 One Outsized Core CPI Gain does not Make a Trend, it Looks Like Noise (Publication Centre)

The January core CPI numbers are consistent with our view that the U.S. faces bigger upside inflation risks than markets and the Fed believe.

20 March 2019 Losing One Dot is a Good Bet Two Would Box-in the Fed Unnecessarily (Publication Centre)

We expect the Fed today to shift its dotplot to forecast one rate hike this year, down from two in December and three in September.

20 March 2018 FOMC to Stick to Three Hikes this Year, but an Extra Dot for 2019? (Publication Centre)

We would be astonished if the FOMC meeting starting today does not end with a 25bp rate hike.

20 Nov 2019 Housing Construction is Trending Higher, Further Gains Ahead (Publication Centre)

The recent increases in single-family housing construction are consistent with the rise in new home sales, triggered by the substantial fall in mortgage rates over the past year.

21 Aug 2019 Existing Home Sales are Reviving Lower Rates Signal a Better H2 (Publication Centre)

We're expecting to learn today that existing home sales rose quite sharply in July, perhaps reaching the highest level since early 2018.

21 June 2019 Dealing with the "Delay Suits Both" Theories of China Trade (Publication Centre)

We've had pushback from readers over our take on the likelihood of a trade deal with China in the near future.

15 Nov 2019 Core Retail Sales Growth has to Slow in Q4, but How Far (Publication Centre)

The rate of growth of nominal core retail sales substantially outstripped the rate of growth of nominal personal incomes, after tax, in both the second and third quarters.

20 December 2018 The Dovish Hike wasn't Dovish Enough for the Stock Market (Publication Centre)

The FOMC did the minimum expected of it yesterday, raising rates by 25bp--with a 20bp increase in IOER--and dropping one of its dots for 2019.

19 Sept 2019 Caught in the Lights Bi-directional Uncertainty Constrains the Fed (Publication Centre)

The Fed headlines yesterday carried no real surprises; rates were cut by 25bp, with a promise to take further action if "appropriate to sustain the expansion".

17 August 2018 Noisy Headlines Don't Change the Core Story Growth Still Solid (Publication Centre)

Your correspondent is headed to the beach for the next couple of weeks, with publication resuming on Tuesday, September 4.

18 Sept 2019 Will the Fed Forecast Meaningfully Higher Tariff-Induced Inflation (Publication Centre)

We'd be very surprised to see anything other than a 25bp rate cut from the Fed today, alongside a repeat of the key language from July, namely, that the Committee "... will act as appropriate to sustain the expansion".

17 October 2018 Did FOMC Members Discuss Rising R-star at the September Meeting (Publication Centre)

The median of FOMC members' estimates of longer run nominal r-star--the rate which would maintain full employment and 2% inflation--nudged up by a tenth in September to 3.0%, implying real r-star of 1%.

19 December 2018 The Fed will Hike, but the Dots Could Sting a Shift to Two isn't Certain (Publication Centre)

From a bird's-eye perspective, the argument for continued steady Fed rate hikes is clear.

19 June 2019 The Fed Will Commit to Ease if "Appropriate" it isn't, Yet (Publication Centre)

The Fed will leave rates unchanged today.

26 March 2019 Consumers are Cash-Rich and Confident Don't Worry About Them (Publication Centre)

When Fed Chair Powell said last week that the "surprise" weakness in the official retail sales numbers is "inconsistent with a significant amount of other data", we're guessing that he had in mind a couple of reports which will be updated today.

28 November 2018 The Fed is Nearer Neutral, but That's not News Where is Neutral (Publication Centre)

Today brings a ton of data, as well as an appearance by Fed Chair Powell at the Economic Club of New York, in which we assume he will address the current state of the economy and the Fed's approach to policy.

28 February 2018 Powell Plays the Continuity Card, Mostly, but he's Bullish on Growth (Publication Centre)

Fed Chair Powell sounded a lot like Janet Yellen yesterday, at least in terms of substance.

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