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505 matches for " recession":
The 2010s were the first decade since reliable records begin--in the 1700s--in which a recession was completely avoided
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.
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.
Brazil's recession is getting uglier. Real GDP in Brazil fell 1.7% quarter-on-quarter in Q3, much worse than expected, though marginally less terrible than the downwardly revised 2.1% contraction in Q2. Year-over-year, the economy plunged by 4.5% in the third quarter, down from -3.0% in Q2, and -2.5% in the first half. The disappointment was widespread in Q3; though rising mining output was a positive, the underlying trend in mining is still falling. The key story here, though, is that the economy has sunk into its worst slump since the Great Depression.
We doubt there will ever be a fail-safe leading indicator of when a recession is about to hit, but asset prices can help us to assess the risks, at least.
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.
The collapse in gilt yields last week--including a drop to a record low at the 10-year maturity--appears to be an ominous sign for the economic outlook. For now, though, the yield curve signals a further easing of GDP growth, rather than a spiral into recession. Low liquidity also means modest changes in demand are generating large movements in yields, undermining gilts' usefulness as a leading indicator.
Economic data released yesterday underscored that Brazil emerged from recession in the first quarter, but further rate cuts are needed. Indeed, the monthly economic activity index--the IBC-Br--fell 0.4% monthto- month in March, though this followed a strong 1.4% gain in February.
We think of recessions usually as processes; namely, the unwinding of private sector financial imbalances.
Argentina's Q4 GDP report, released last week, underscored the severity of the recession, due to the currency crisis and the subsequent tighter fiscal and monetary policies.
Recession fears were fanned yesterday by the renewed deterioration of the Markit/CIPS services survey.
Data while we were away have intensified fears that the global, and by extension EZ, economy is slipping into recession.
The sharp 0.4% month-to-month fall in GDP in December and the slump in the Markit/CIPS PMIs towards 50 have created the impression the economy is on the cusp of recession.
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.
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.
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?
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.
Friday's data force us to walk back our recession call for Germany. The seasonally adjusted trade surplus rose in September, to €19.2B from €18.7B in August, lifted by a 1.5% month-to-month jump in exports, and the previous months' numbers were revised up significantly.
We continue to distrust the suggestion from the Markit/CIPS PMIs that the economy is in recession.
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.
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.
Banxico cut its policy rate by 25bp to 7.25% yesterday, as was widely expected, following similar moves in August, September and November.
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.
If Japan's flash PMIs for March are a sign of things to come, then the government really should get moving on fiscal stimulus.
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%.
With plenty of evidence emerging that consumer spending and business investment are set to suffer from a collapse in confidence, attention is turning to whether other sectors of the economy are ready to step up and support growth. But the fruits from reduced fiscal contraction and stronger net trade will be small and will take a long time to emerge.
Yesterday's March PMIs confirmed that governments' actions to contain the Covid-19 outbreak dealt a hammer blow to the economy at the end of Q1.
Today's labour market figures will provide the first "hard data" showing how the economy has fared since the referendum. The headline employment and unemployment numbers will refer to the three months ending June, but data for July will be published on the number of people claiming unemployment benefit and the level of job vacancies.
Yesterday's economic reports in the Eurozone were ugly.
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.
Another day, another downbeat survey. The British Chamber of Commerce's comprehensive and long-running Quarterly Economic Survey was published yesterday, and it added to evidence of a Q1 slowdown.
Chancellor Sunak's "temporary, timely and targeted" fiscal response to the Covid-19 outbreak, and the BoE's accompanying stimulus measures, won't prevent GDP from falling over the next couple of months.
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.
The fact that Italy's economy is in poor shape will not surprise anyone following the euro area, but the advance Q4 GDP headline was astonishingly poor all the same.
Signs that the economy has been crippled by people's response to the Covid-19 outbreak continued to emerge yesterday.
We suspect that euro area investors have one question on their mind as we step into 2019.
The verdict is in.
Friday's GDP report should show that the economy narrowly avoided contracting in Q2.
Japan is one of the countries most exposed to economic damage from the coronavirus.
Manufacturers in Germany endured another miserable quarter in Q3.
Financial markets have gone into another tailspin over the last fortnight, triggered by rising concern about the possibility of a no-deal Brexit and President Trump's threat of further tariffs on Chinese goods.
Yesterday's manufacturing data in Germany provided alarming evidence of a much more severe slowdown in the second half of last year than economists had initially expected.
Mexico's final estimate of third quarter GDP, released yesterday, confirmed that the economy is still struggling in the face of domestic and external headwinds.
LatAm financial and FX markets have behaved relatively well in recent sessions, thanks to the array of monetary and fiscal measures taken to counter the severe risk-off environment.
Yesterday's final PMI data in the euro area for November broadly confirmed the initial estimates.
Last week's detailed Q3 GDP data in Germany verified that GDP fell 0.2% quarter-on-quarter, down from a 0.5% rise in Q2, a number which all but confirms the key story for the economy over the year as a whole.
Brazil's external accounts remain solid, despite the recent modest deterioration, making it easier for the country to withstand external and domestic risks.
The November IFO report suggests that the headline indices are on track for a tepid recovery in Q4 as a whole, but the central message is still one of downside risks to growth
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.
India's government imposed a three-week nationwide lockdown on March 25 to combat the increasingly rapid spread of Covid-19.
Survey data in Germany showed few signs of picking up from their depressed level at the start of Q4.
The slide in global long-term bond yields, and flattening curves, have spooked markets this year, sparking fears among investors of an impending global economic recession.
The main way monetary easing can support an economy swiftly during a recession, when few people want to take on new debt, is to boost households' cashflow by reducing interest payments.
News websites are emblazoned with the headline that retail sales are falling at their fastest rate since the 2008-to-09 recession.
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.
Britain's shock vote to leave the E.U. has unleashed a wave of economic and political uncertainty that likely will drive the U.K. into recession.
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.
Leading economic indicators in the Eurozone continue to send contradictory signals. Most of the headline surveys indicate that a further slowdown, and perhaps even recession, are imminent, while the money supply data suggest that GDP growth is about to re-accelerate.
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.
April's GDP data give a grim firs t impression, though the details provide reassurance that the economy isn't on the cusp of a recession.
April's production data, released today, look set to indicate that the industrial sector's recession--its third in the last eight years--deepened in the second quarter. We think the consensus expectation that industrial production held steady in April is too upbeat. We look for a 0.3% month-to-month drop.
Argentina's economy is on the verge of a renewed recession; available data for August and the effect of the recent financial crisis, driven by the result of the primaries, suggest that output will come under severe strain.
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.
The outlook for Argentina is gradually improving, after a long and painful recession.
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.
Argentina's Recession Has Ended, Supporting Mr. Macri's Odds
The first economic report of 2020 confirmed the main story in the euro area last year; namely a recession in manufacturing.
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.
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.
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".
Inflation pressure remained relatively high in Argentina last year, due mostly to the legacy of the Kirchner era. But we think inflation will ease this year, given the lagged effects of the recession and the fiscal consolidation.
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.
The more headline hard data we see in the Eurozone, the more we are getting the impression that 2019 is the year of stabilisation, rather than a precursor to recession.
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.
The dreadful September ISM manufacturing survey reinforces our view that the sector will be in recession for the foreseeable future, and that both business capex and exports are on the verge of a serious downturn.
The Q1 GDP figures, released on Wednesday, likely will show that the quarter-on-quarter decline in economic activity eclipsed the biggest decline in the 2008-to-09 recession--2.1% in Q4 2008--even though the U.K. went into lockdown towards the very end of the quarter.
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.
The economy's recovery from the 2008/09 recession has been weaker than after the previous two downturns partly because households have not depleted housing equity to fund consumption.
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.
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.
Manufacturing is not in recession, yet, despite the reams of gloomy analysis of the sector, including our own.
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.
Manufacturing is in recession, with few signs yet that a floor is near, still less a recovery.
The Greek economy escaped recession in the second half of last year. Real GDP rose a cumulative 1.2% in Q2 and Q3, following a 0.6% fall in Q1. And industrial production and retail sales data suggest that the advance GDP report released later this month will show that the momentum was sustained in Q4. Headline survey data, however, indicate that downside risks to the economy remain.
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%.
Our view that households will continue to spend more in the first half of this year, preventing the economy from slipping into a capex-led recession, was not seriously challenged yesterday by the BRC's Retail Sales Monitor.
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.
Italy's economy is still bumping along the bottom, after emerging from recession in the middle of last year.
The drop in the flash composite PMI in March will be one for the record books, unfortunately. We look for an unprecedented drop to 43.0, from 53.3 in February, which would undershoot the 45.0 consensus and signal clearly that a deep recession is underway.
The Conference Board's index of leading economic indicators appears to signal that the U.S. economy is plunging headlong into recession.
Monetary policy usually is the first line of defence whenever a recession hits.
An unusual factor may have contributed to the German economy's likely fall into a shallow recession at the tail end of 2018, a new report from research house Pantheon Macroeconomics suggests.
Historical evidence suggests that we should be worried about the relative weakness in the Eurozone's manufacturing sector. Industrial production ex-construction has historically been a key indicator of the business cycle, despite accounting for a comparatively modest 19% of total value-added in the euro area. In all three previous major downturns, underperformance in the manufacturing sector sounded the alarm six-to-nine months in advance that the economy was about to slip into recession.
The Brazilian economy managed to avert a technical recession over the first half of the year.
Chief U.K. Economist Samuel Tombs on U.K. Construction
Chief U.S. Economist Ian Shepherdson discussing the latest from the Fed
Chief U.K. Economist Samuel Tombs on the latest GDP figures
Chief Asia Economist Freya Beamish on Japan's economy
Chief Eurozone Economist Claus Vistesen on Germany's economy
Chief U.K. Economist Samuel Tombs on the latest PMI data
Chief Eurozone Economist Claus Vistesen on the German economy
Chief Eurozone Economist Claus Vistesen discussing Germany's economy
Today's preliminary estimate of Q3 GDP is the last major economic report to be released before the MPC's meeting on November 2.
Hard data released in Argentina over the last month showed that the economy was struggling in early Q1, even before the Covid-19 hit.
Prospects for further rate cuts in Brazil, due to the sluggishness of the economic recovery and low inflation, have played against the BRL in recent weeks.
Signs of a slowdown in the labour market data are conspicuously absent.
The Fed's announcement, at 11.30pm Wednesday, that it will establish a Money Market Mutual Fund Liquidity Facility--MMLF--to support prime money market funds, is another step to limit the emerging credit crunch triggered by the virus.
The passage of the House tax cut bill does not guarantee that the Senate will follow suit with its own bill, still less that both chambers will then be able to agree on a single bill which can then b e signed into law. As
We keep hearing that the auto market is struggling, but that idea is not supported by the recent sales numbers.
One of the most surprising features of the economic recovery has been that households have not responded to the surge in house prices by releasing housing equity to fund consumption. Housing equity rose to 4.2 times annual disposable incomes in 2015, up from 3.7 in 2012. It has more than doubled over the last two decades.
Brace yourselves; GDP growth forecasts are being slashed left and right, as our colleagues take stock of the economic damage Covid-19 likely will inflict in the U.S. and across Europe, where outbreaks and containment measures have escalated significantly.
May's consumer prices report contained few surprises. The fall in the headline rate of CPI inflation to 2.0%, from April's Easter-boosted 2.1%, matched the consensus, our forecast and the MPC's.
Mr. Draghi's speech to the European Banking Congress on Friday--see here--was a timely reminder to markets that the ECB is in no hurry to make any changes to its policy setting.
Bank Governor Mark Carney reiterated in a speech yesterday that he wants to see sustained momentum in GDP growth, domestic cost pressures firm and core inflation rise further towards 2%, before raising interest rates. We doubt he will have long to wait on the last two points, given the tightness of the labour market.
The ECB made no changes to policy yesterday, leaving its key refinancing and deposit rates unchanged, at 0.00% and -0.5%, and confirmed that it will restart QE in November at €20B per month.
Economic and financial conditions continue to deteriorate sharply in LatAm.
Argentina's inflation ended 2019 badly, and it is still too early to bet on a protracted downtrend, even after the renewed economic slowdown.
Brazil's economic data last week were appalling. The IPCA-15 price index rose 1.3% month-to-month, the fastest pace in 12 years, pushing the annual rate to 7.4% in mid-February from 6.7% in mid-January,well above the 6.5% upper bound of the BCB's target range.
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.
Guo Shuqing, head of the newly formed China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission, has been named as Party Secretary for the PBoC.
The biggest single problem for the stock market is the president.
The collapse in oil prices looks near-certain to pull Japan back into deflation in the next few months, though the BoJ normally looks through oil-induced swings in its target inflation measure.
Low-income households will feel the full force of the Covid-19 downturn and will have to slash their expenditure aggressively.
German retail and consumer sentiment data for March have been mixed this week, but broadly support our call that growth in consumption should pick up soon.
The Fed wants price stability--currently defined as 2% inflation--and maximum sustainable employment.
Yesterday's detailed GDP data in Germany confirmed that the economy shrank slightly in the second quarter, by 0.1% quarter-on-quarter, following the 0.4% increase in Q1.
We have argued for some time that the revival in nonoil capex represents clear upside risk for GDP growth next year, but it's now time to make this our base case.
Data released yesterday in Brazil support our base case that the IPCA inflation rate will remain relatively stable over the coming months, hovering around 2%.
The main thing on investors' minds is how much more pain the global economy has to take as a result of China's slowdown.
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.
We've suspected that China's GDP targeting system was on its last legs for some time now.
The German economy finished last year on the back foot.
A few ECB governors has attempted to lean against dovish expectations in the past week.
News that the Covid-19 virus has spread to more countries frayed investors' nerves further yesterday, with the FTSE 100 eventually residing 5.3% below its Friday close.
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.
Amid all the trade tensions, it's easy to lose sight of the big picture for China.
Brazil's central bank again matched expectations on Wednesday, cutting the Selic rate by 100 basis points to 10.25%, without bias. The COPOM s aid that a "moderate reduction of the pace of monetary easing" would be "adequate".
November's interest rate rise, which took investors by surprise, was triggered in part by the MPC slashing its estimate of trend growth to 1.5%, from an implicit 2.0%.
Yesterday's IFO offered a rare upside surprise in the German survey data.
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.
We remain negative about the medium-term growth prospects of the Mexican economy.
After many years in which the phrase "twin deficits" was never mentioned, suddenly it is the explanation of choice for the weakening of the dollar and the sudden increase in real Treasury yields since the turn of the year, shortly after the tax cut bill passed Congress.
Yesterday's business confidence data in the EZ core were mixed.
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.
Headline M3 money supply growth in the Eurozone was steady as a rock at around 5% year-over-year between 2014 and the end of 2017.
Back-to-back elevated weekly jobless claims numbers prove nothing, but they have grabbed our attention.
The coronavirus pandemic is wreaking havoc in Brazil.
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.
Chile's central bank kept rates unchanged last Thursday at 2.50% with a dovish bias, following an unexpected 50bp rate cut at the June meeting.
Most LatAm currencies have been under pressure recently, with the Brazilian real and the Chilean peso breaking all-time lows versus the USD in recent weeks.
Yesterday's economic data provided the first glimpse of the crash in EZ sentiment at the start of Q2, ahead of today's more substantial barrage of numbers, including French INSEE data, GfK confidence numbers in Germany and the advance PMIs.
Today's data likely will show that EZ households' sentiment remained close to a record high at the start of the year.
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%.
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.
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.
Yesterday's February PMI data sent a clear message to markets.
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.
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.
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%.
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.
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.
Chile's Q1 GDP report, released yesterday, confirmed that the economy weakened sharply at the beginning of the year, due mainly to temporary shocks, including adverse weather conditions.
The Brazilian Central Bank's policy board, COPOM, left the Selic rate at 6.50% on Wednesday, as widely expected.
Mexican policymakers held an emergency meeting yesterday in the wake of DM easing, global fiscal stimulus, plunging oil prices, and the pandemic crisis, slashing interest rates to their lower level since early 2017.
The U.S. consumer is back on track, almost. We have argued in recent months that the sharp slowdown in the rate of growth of consumption is mostly a story about a transition from last year's surge, when spending was boosted by the tax cuts and, later, by falling gas prices, to a sustainable pace roughly in line with real after-tax income growth.
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.
Tomorrow's Q1 GDP report for Korea has a wider spread of forecasts than usual, reflecting Covid-19's uneven hit to the economy.
Today's housing market data likely will look soft, but will probably not be representative of the underlying story, which remains quite positive.
November's labour market data were the last before the MPC's February meeting, when it will conduct its annual assessment of the supply side of the economy.
Policymakers and governments are gradually deploying major fiscal and monetary policy measures to ease the hit from Covid-19 and the related financial crisis.
Friday's economic data in Germany left markets with a confused picture of the Eurozone's largest economy.
The ECB made no major policy changes yesterday.
Last week's data added yet more weight to our view that manufacturing is in deep trouble, and that the bottom has not yet been reached.
Yesterday was a watershed moment for investors.
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.
Broadly speaking, yesterday's headline EZ survey data recounted the same story they've told all year; namely that manufacturing is suffering amid resilience in services.
The MPC's meeting last week was notable not just for its glass half-full interpretation of the latest data, but also for its updated guidance on when it likely will begin to shrink its bloated balance sheet.
The data in LatAm have been all over the map in recent weeks.
Investors think it more likely that the MPC will cut Bank Rate in the first half of next year, following Friday's release of the flash Markit/CIPS PMIs for November.
On a headline level, the key message from the Eurozone PMIs was little changed on Friday.
LatAm governments and central banks have been busy implementing additional measures to contain the spread of the virus, and acting rapidly to ease the effect on the economy.
Yesterday's PMI data were an open goal for those with a bearish outlook on the euro area economy.
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.
The gap between U.K. and U.S. government bond yields has continued to grow this year and is approaching a record.
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.
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.
Yesterday's advance consumer sentiment index in the Eurozone confirmed the upside risks for consumers' spending in Q4. The headline index rose to a 17- year high of +0.1 in November, from -1.0 in October.
Economists' forecasts are changing almost as quickly as market prices these days, and not for the better.
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.
After pricing-in the consequences of sterling's depreciation for inflation last year only slowly, markets are at risk of costly inertia again.
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.
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.
The sluggishness of existing home sales in recent months, as exemplified by yesterday's report of a small dip in June, is due entirely to a sharp drop in the number of cash buyers.
Our base case remains that the slowdown in quarter-on-quarter GDP growth to about zero in Q2 is just a blip, and that the economy will regain momentum in Q3 and sustain it well into 2020.
The PMIs in the Eurozone are still warning that the economy is in much worse shape than implied by remarkably stable GDP growth so far this year.
The fall in the Markit/CIPS manufacturing PMI to 47.4 in August--its lowest level since July 2012--from 48.0 in July suggests that pre-Brexit stockpiling isn't countering the hit to demand from Brexit uncertainty and the global industrial slowdown.
The surge in the broad money supply in March, as the U.K.'s lockdown began, suggests that businesses are in relatively good shape to survive a multi-month period of greatly depressed demand.
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.
The week started well for Brazil's President Bolsonaro.
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.
Yesterday's final manufacturing PMIs for October were grim, but they told investors nothing they don't already know.
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.
Efforts to contain the coronavirus outbreak severely dented industrial activity in Brazil.
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.
Brazil's industrial sector is on the mend, but some of the key sub-sectors are struggling.
Friday's final PMI data for March were even more terrifying than the advance numbers. The composite index in the euro area collapsed to 29.7, from 51.6 in February, lower than the consensus 31.4. A downward revision was coming.
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.
Private non-financial corporations' profits have held up well over the last two years, despite the net negative impact of sterling's depreciation and modest increases in Bank Rate.
Markets were left somewhat disappointed yesterday by the G7 statement that central banks and finance ministers stand ready "to use all appropriate policy tools to achieve strong, sustainable growth and safeguard against downside risks."
The Fed is in a double bind.
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.
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.
January's money supply figures continued the nerve-jangling flow of data on the economy's momentum.
The nosedive in the Markit/CIPS manufacturing PMI in April provides an early sign that GDP growth is likely to slow even further in the second quarter. The MPC, however, looks set to keep its powder dry. We continue to think that the next move in interest rates will be up, towards the end of this year.
We were worried about downside risk to yesterday's ADP employment measure, but the 67K increase in November private payrolls was at the very bottom of our expected range.
Yesterday's data showed that the euro area PMIs were a bit stronger than initially estimated in November.
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.
We have argued for some time that much of the early phase of the downturn in global manufacturing was due to the weakening of China's economic cycle, rather than the trade war.
Demand in German manufacturing slid at the start of Q3.
April's GDP report, released on Monday, likely will add fuel to the fire of the re cent sharp decline in interest rate expectations.
Yesterday's headline economic data in Germany were decent enough. Industrial output edged higher by 0.3% month-to-month in May, lifted primarily by rising production of capital and consumer goods.
Productivity statistics released yesterday continued to paint a bleak picture. Output per worker rose by a mere 0.1% year-over-year in Q3, despite jumping by 0.6% quarter-on-quarter.
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.
We have two competing explanations for the unexpected leap in November payrolls. First, it was a fluke, so it will either be revised down substantially, or will be followed by a hefty downside correction in December.
We look for August's GDP report, released on Thursday, to show that output held steady, following July's 0.3% month-to-month jump.
Japan's current account surplus has been broadly stable in absolute terms in the last couple of years, though it has retreated as a share of GDP.
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.
Friday's detailed Q2 growth data in the EZ broadly confirmed the advance numbers.
After last week's drama, the pace of political developments should slow down this week.
German manufacturing rebounded somewhat mid-way through Q3.
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.
September PMI surveys in Mexico continued to bolster our argument for a subpar recovery in the second half of the year.
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.
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.
The Brazilian Senate concluded last week the first vote- of-two- on the pension reform.
In some sense, today's ECB meeting will be a sobering one for policymakers.
Markets expect the MPC to shelve November's guidance--that interest rates need to rise only twice in the next three years--at today's meeting.
Mr. Draghi and his colleagues erred on the side of maximum dovishness yesterday.
Yesterday's manufacturing data in Germany were poor, but not as weak as implied by the headline.
Investors now see a 50/50 chance of the MPC cutting Bank Rate within the next nine months, following the slightly dovish minutes of the MPC's meeting, and its new forecasts.
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.
The 15% fall in the FTSE 100 since its May 2018 peak undoubtedly is an unwelcome development for the economy, but past experience suggests we shouldn't rush to revise down our forecasts for GDP growth.
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.
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" .
The limited data available on the state of the labour market, since the government forced businesses to close two weeks ago, paint a disconcerting picture.
Yesterday's EZ money supply data confirmed that liquidity conditions in the private sector improved in Q3, despite the dip in the headline.
The newly-revised data on capital goods orders, released on Friday, support our view that sustained strength in business capex remains a good bet for this year.
The Redbook chainstore sales survey today is likely to give the superficial impression that the peak holiday shopping season got off to a robust start last week.
Friday's inflation and labour market data in the Eurozone were dovish.
Yesterday's final manufacturing PMIs confirmed that all remained calm in the EZ industrial sector through February.
President Trump's volatile diplomatic style is one of the biggest risks facing the Mexican economy in the near term, as we have discussed in previous Monitors.
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.
The official PMIs suggest that the January survey data have escaped the worst of the hit from the virus.
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.
Our ECB-story since Ms. Lagarde took the helm as president has been that the central bank will do as little as possible through 2020, at least in terms of shifting its major policy tools.
Judging by the survey data, German business sentiment remained depressed at the start of the year.
Mexican economic data was surprisingly benign last week.
At first glance, the U.K. consumer price data show a perplexing absence of domestically generated inflation.
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.
Mexican policymakers voted to leave the main rate on hold at 8.25% yesterday, as inflation remains high--though falling--and the economy is stuttering.
The resilience of the banking system will be in focus today when the results of this year's Bank of England stress test are published alongside its Financial Stability Report.
Net foreign trade was a drag on GDP growth in the second quarter, subtracting 0.7 percentage points from the headline number.
The EZ economic survey data for April were disappointing in our absence.
Yesterday's French INSEE consumer confidence data provided a fascinating glimpse into the reality for households during these strange times. The headline index fell by "just" eight points in April, to 95 from 103 in March, comfortably beating the consensus for a crash to 80.
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.
A robust April payroll number today is a good bet, but a gain in line with the 275K ADP reading probably is out of reach.
Manufacturers in the Eurozone are still suffering, but yesterday's final PMI data for April offered a few bright spots.
The virus outbreak has been relatively limited so far in Argentina, with 820 confirmed cases, but the numbers are rising rapidly.
A pair of closely-watched reports today will confirm that business and consumer confidence is tanking in the face of the coronavirus outbreak.
Yesterday's first estimate of full-year 2019 GDP in Mexico confirmed that growth was extremely poor, due to domestic and external shocks.
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.
Covid-19 has cut short a nascent recovery in housing market activity.
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%.
The 90-day truce in the trade wars between the U.S. and China, brokered on Saturday at the G20 meeting in Argentina, is a big deal for financial markets in the euro area, at least in the near term.
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.
Data released yesterday confirm that Brazil's recovery has continued over the second half of the year, supported by steady capex growth and rebounding household consumption.
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.
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.
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%.
Today's barrage of data kicks off a couple of busy days in the Eurozone economic calendar.
Argentina's financial markets and embattled currency have been under severe pressure in recent weeks, with the ARS hitting a new record low against the USD and government bonds sinking to distress levels.
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.
Markets now think the Fed is done.
Some closely-watched composite leading indicators for the U.K. economy, and for many others, are flashing red.
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.
Industrial profits in China collapsed by 38.3% year- over-year in the first two months of 2020, making December's 6.3% fall look like a minor blip.
The massive hit from low oil prices, Covid-19 and President AMLO's willingness to call snap referendums on projects already under construction is putting pressure on Mexico's sovereign credit fundamentals and ratings.
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.
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.
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.
The Andean countries were quick to implement significant measures in response to the initial stage of the pandemic, adopting a broad range of economic and social policies to ease the effects.
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.
All major EZ governments are now in the process of lifting lockdowns, but investors should expect less a grand opening, more of a careful tip-toeing.
Mexico's industrial sector did relatively well in Q3, due mainly to the resilience of the manufacturing sector, and the rebound in construction and oil output, following a long period of sluggishness.
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.
Mexico's industrial production report released yesterday brought encouraging news about the state of the economy, helping relieve some doubts about its health.
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.
The MPC's pause for breath last week disappointed a majority of investors, who thought that it would at least tweak aspects of the support programmes put in place in March.
Economic data in the euro area are still slipping and sliding.
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.
On a headline level, the Spanish economy conformed to its image as the star performer in the EZ in Q4.
Inflation in Brazil ended 2017 well under control, despite December's modest overshoot. This will allow the BCB to cut rates further in Q1 to underpin the economic recovery.
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.
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.
As a general rule, faster productivity growth is always good news.
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.
The ECB disappointed slightly on the big headlines in yesterday's policy announcements, but it delivered shock and awe with the details
The EZ calendar has been extremely busy in the first few weeks of the year, making it virtually impossible to see the forest for the trees.
The wave of May data due for release today likely will go some way to countering the market narrative of a seriously slowing economy, a story which gained further momentum last week after the release of the May employment report.
More depressing economic numbers in LatAm have been released in recent days, and high frequency data continue to show a near-term bleak outlook.
Analysis of the economy's potential to recover later this year from extreme weakness in Q2 has focussed largely on the extent to which virus-related restrictions will be lifted.
We will be paying special attention to the sentiment surveys for Argentina over the coming weeks.
Japan's money and credit data have shown signs of life in recent months, but that's all set to change quickly, due to the disruptions caused by the outbreak of the coronavirus.
Here's the bottom line: U.S. businesses appear to have over-reacted to the impact of the trade war in their responses to most surveys, pointing to a serious downturn in economic growth which has not materialized.
April's labour market data show that slack in the job market is no longer declining, while wage growth still isn't recovering. As a result, we no longer think that the MPC will raise Bank Rate in August and now expect the Committee to stand pat until the first half of 2019.
As we go to press, Mrs. May's last-minute scramble to Strasbourg appears to have failed to persuade enough rebels to back the government.
Data yesterday suggest that EZ investor sentiment is on track for a modest recovery in Q3.
German manufacturing snapped back at the end of summer. Industrial production jumped 2.6% month-to-month in August, pushing the year-over- year rate up to 4.7% from a revised 4.2% in July.
Data released this week in LatAm are the last calm before the coronavirus storm.
German industrial output rebounded strongly at the beginning of the Q1. Production surged 3.3% month-to-month in January, pushing the year-over-year rate up to 2.2%, from a revised -1.2% in December
The Prime Minister is in a position on Brexit all chess players dread: zugzwang.
External conditions continue to favour Brazil. The recovery in domestic demand in the world's major economies, particularly the rebound in business investment, has driven a gradual revival of global exports.
Yesterday's advance Q4 GDP data in the Eurozone confirmed that growth slowed significantly in the second half of 2018.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Most of the data were consistent with the idea that fourth quarter growth will be a two-part story, with real strength in domestic final demand partly offset by substantial drags from net foreign trade and inventories.
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.
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.
The fact that Brazilian economy shrank in the first quarter was never in doubt; what really mattered was the pace of contraction. Surprisingly; the decline was just 0.2% quarter-on-quarter in Q1, above market expectations, but still down after the meagre 0.3% gain in Q4.
Yesterday's economic headlines in the Eurozone were pleasant reading.
We're now starting to see clear signs in unofficial data that households are slashing their expenditure on discretionary services, in order to minimise their chances of catching the coronavirus.
China's trade balance flipped to an unadjusted deficit of $7.1B in the first two months of the year, from a $47.2B surplus in December.
The MPC was relatively bullish on the outlook for households' spending when it signalled its view, in February's Inflation Report, that the case for raising interest rates before the end of this year had strengthened.
We remain confident in the success of legislation designed to compel the PM to request a further extension of the U.K.'s E.U. membership on October 19, in the overwhelmingly likely scenario that an exit deal is not agreed at next week's E.U. Council meeting.
Gloom and uncertainty are spreading across the global economy as we head into the final stretch of the year.
LatAm's growth outlook is deteriorating, despite decent domestic fundamentals and political transitions toward more market-oriented governments in some of the region's main economies.
Our forecast of a solid 190K increase in headline December payrolls ignores our composite employment indicator, which usually leads by about three months and points to a print of just 50K or so.
The obsession of markets and the media with the industrial sector means that today's ISM manufacturing survey will be scrutinized far more closely than is justified by its real importance.
Taken at face value, September's money supply data suggest that the economy is ebullient, quickly recovering from the shock referendum result. Year-over-year growth in notes and coins in circulation has accelerated to its highest rate since June 2002.
The latest national accounts show that the economy is holding up much better in the face of heightened Brexit uncertainty than previously thought.
The early Q4 hard data in Germany recovered a bit of ground yesterday.
Inflation data in Brazil, Mexico and Chile last week reinforced our view that interest rates will remain on hold, or be cut, over the coming meetings. The recent fall in oil prices, and the weakness of domestic demand, will offset recent volatility caused by the FX sell-off, driven mostly by the coronavirus story.
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.
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.
The labour market was pretty robust before the coronavirus crisis.
Yesterday's November EZ construction data offered little respite to the gloomy outlook for the Q4 GDP headline.
Colombia and Peru have been among the top performers in LatAm currency markets in recent weeks, both rising above 4% against the dollar. Higher commodity prices seem to be driving the rally as domestic factors haven't changed dramatically.
This week's labour market report--primarily reflecting conditions in March, though some data refer to April--will lift the veil on the initial economic damage from Covid-19, though the full horror will emerge only later.
Data released on Friday confirmed an appalling end to the first quarter for the Brazilian and Colombian economies. In Brazil, the March IBC-Br, a monthly proxy for GDP, plunged 5.9% month-to-month, close to expectations.
Investors have endured a severe test of their resolve in the last few months. Global equity markets have sunk more than 10%, eclipsing the previous low in September, and credit spreads have widened. The bears have predictably pounced and, as if the torrid price action hasn't been enough, media headlines have been littered with advice to "sell everything" and warnings of a 75% fall in U.S. and global equities. When "price is news" we recognise that views from well-meaning economists--often using lagging and revised economic data to describe the world--are of little value.
It's easy to claim from yesterday's labour market data that the economy is weathering the uncertainty caused by the E.U. referendum. Employment rose by 172K, or 0.5%, between Q1 and Q2, and the claimant count fell by 7K month-to-month in July. These numbers, however, flatter to deceive.
The presidential election in Argentina is only four months away and the race is heating up.
When economic historians look back at the bizarre trade war of 2018-to-19, we think they will see Tuesday June 4 as the turning point, after which the threats of fire and brimstone were taken much less seriously, and markets began to ponder life after tariffs.
Latin American markets and policymakers are bracing for another complicated week, after the second, and more aggressive, Fed emergency move over the weekend.
The GM strike will make itself felt in the September industrial production data, due today.
We are becoming increasingly convinced that momentum is starting to build in the housing market. That might sound odd in the context of the recent trends in both new and existing home sales, shown in our first chart, but what has our attention is upstream activity.
Some shoes never drop. But it would be unwise to assume that the steep plunge in manufacturing output apparently signalled by the ISM manufacturing index won't happen, just because the hard data recently have been better than the survey implied.
Argentinians are heading to the polls on Sunday October 27 and will likely turn their backs on the current president, Mauricio Macri.
Data released last week confirm that the Argentinian economy finally is stabilizing.
Chile's central bank, the BCCh, admitted defeat in the face of the inflationary effects of the CLP's depreciation, increasing interest rates by 25bp to 3.25% last Thursday, the first hike since mid-2011. Chile is the third LatAm economy in a month to increase rates in response to currency weakness, despite sluggish economic growth.
Japan's jobless rate was unchanged, at 2.4% in October, as the market took a breather after September's job losses.
The PMI survey continues to send a downbeat message on growth in the euro area despite signs of improvement in other sentiment data: The final manufacturing PMI in the Eurozone fell to 50.1 in November from 50.6 in October.
Yesterday's EZ industrial production data for January confirmed the string of positive advance numbers from most of the individual economies.
This week sees the release of most of the key May surveys. The prospect of mean reversion following a very strong start to the year, coupled with the impact of recent market volatility, points to a modest loss of momentum, especially for surveys of investors.
A lot of ink has been spilled over the relative significance of the supply and demand effects of Covid-19, but the short-term story is clear.
Our colleagues have been telling some unpleasant stories recently.
The declines in headline housing starts and building permits in September don't matter; both were driven by corrections in the volatile multi-family sector.
Manufacturing does not consistently lead the rest of the economy. Neither does it consistently lag. On average, turning points in the rates of growth of manufacturing output and GDP are coincident, as our first chart clearly shows. But coincidence is not causality.
Mexico's economic and financial outlook is deteriorating rapidly and hopes of a gradual recovery over the next three-to-six months are fading away after AMLO's missteps in recent months.
Today's ZEW investor sentiment report in Germany will kick off a busy week for Eurozone economic survey data, which likely will be tainted by the U.K. referendum result. We think the headline ZEW expectations index fell to about five in July, from 19.2 in June, below the consensus forecast, 9.2. Our forecastis based on the experience from recent "unexpected" shocks to investors' sentiment.
The outlook for growth in the EZ economy is currently both stable and relatively uncomplicated, at least based on the most widely-watched leading indicators.
We don't use the index of leading economic indicators as a forecasting tool. If it leads the pace of growth at all, it's not by much, and in recent years it has proved deeply unreliable.
China's unadjusted March trade balance rebounded to a surplus of $20B, from a combined deficit of -$7B in the first two months of the year.
Argentina's central bank held interest rates at 60% on Wednesday, as was widely expected.
In the wake of the uptick in the March ISM manufacturing survey, we think today's official production data for the same month are likely to disappoint. Our model of the month-to-month output numbers incorporates the ISM data, but it is substantially driven by manufacturing hours worked, which fell in both February and March.
Yesterday's data showed that growth in the EZ slowed in the second quarter.
The EZ Q4 GDP data narrowly avoided a downward revision in yesterday's second estimate.
Hard data for Brazil and Mexico, released last week, support the case for further interest rate cuts.
Friday's data added further colour to the September CPI data for the Eurozone.
We take little comfort from the fact that the 2.0% quarter-on-quarter drop in Q1 GDP was a bit smaller than the consensus forecast, 2.5%, and the 3.0% fall pencilled-in by the MPC in its Monetary Policy Report.
Manufacturing in the EZ was held above water by Ireland at the end of Q3.
September's labour market report suggests that wage growth won't continue to rise for much longer.
We have revised up our second quarter consumption forecast to a startling 4.0% in the wake of yesterday's strong June retail sales numbers, which were accompanied by upward revisions to prior data.
Downbeat sectoral data and weakening consumer spending numbers indicate that the Mexican economy remains in bad shape.
The FTSE 100 fell further yesterday, briefly to levels not seen since November 2012, but its drop over recent months is not a convincing signal of impending economic disaster. The economic recovery is likely to slow further, but this will reflect the building fiscal squeeze and the sterling-related export hit much more than the wobble in market sentiment.
We are not worried about the reported drop in April manufacturing output, which probably will reverse in May.
Retail sales data released yesterday for Brazil confirmed that weakness in private consumption remains a key challenge for the economy. Retail sales plunged 0.9% month-on-month in May, equivalent to a 4.5% fall year-over-year, the lowest rate since late 2003. On a quarterly basis, sales are headed for a 2% contraction in Q2, pointing to a -0.5% GDP contribution from consumer spending.
Last week's policy announcement by the ECB and Mr. Draghi's plea to EU politicians to deliver a fiscal boost, indicate that we're living in extraordinary economic times.
The November industrial production numbers will be dominated by the rebound in auto production following the end of the GM strike.
Incoming activity data from Colombia over the past quarter have been surprisingly strong, despite many domestic and external threats.
The new Argentinian president, Alberto Fernández, will have to make a quick start on the titanic task of cleaning up the economic and social mess left by his predecessor, Mauricio Macri.
Today's brings the June retail sales and industrial production reports, after which we'll update our second quarter GDP forecast.
The New York Times called the China trade agreement reached Friday "half a deal", but that's absurdly generous.
Mexican policymakers stuck to the script yesterday and voted unanimously to cut the main rate by 50bp to 5.50%, its lowest level in more than three years.
China's industrial production grew at an annualised 7.2% rate by volume in Q1, according to our estimates, up from an average 5.9% rate in the six quar ters through mid-2016.
Yesterday's data provided further evidence of the damage wrought on the EZ at the end of Q1.
Yesterday's second Q3 GDP estimate confirmed that the EZ economy expanded by 0.2% quarter-on- quarter in Q3, the same pace as in Q2, leaving the year-over-year rate unchanged at 1.2%.
It will take a while for the economic data in the euro area fully to reflect the Covid-19 shock, but the incoming numbers paint an increasingly clear picture of an improving economy going into the outbreak.
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.
Japan's GDP likely dropped by a huge 0.9% quarter-on-quarter in Q4, after the 0.5% increase in Q3, with risks skewed firmly to the downside.
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.
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.
Markets rightly placed little weight on October's below-consensus GDP report yesterday, and still think that the chances of the MPC cutting Bank Rate within the next six months are below 50%.
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.
Labour cash earnings in Japan ostensibly started the year strongly, jumping by 1.5% year-over-year in January, much better than December's 0.2% slip.
The hard data in Germany took a turn for the worse at the start of Q4. The outlook for consumers' spending was dented by the October plunge in retail sales--see here-- and on Friday, the misery spilled over into manufacturing.
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.
Demand for new cars in the Eurozone has climbed a long way since the last recession, but growth is slowing. Overall, new car registrations in the EZ rose a solid 15.2% in 2016 as a whole. But momen tum slowed in the second half, and sales likely will remain comparatively muted this year. In December, registrations in the euro area rose 2.1% year-over-year in December, down from 5.8% in November. The headline was depressed by plunging growth in some of the smaller countries, offsetting better numbers in the major four economies.
An inverted curve is a widely recognised signal that a recession is around the corner, though it's worth remembering that the lags tend to be long.
The most striking aspect of yesterday's labour market report was the pick-up in the headline three month average year-over-year growth rate of average weekly wages, to a 14-month high of 2.8% in November, from 2.6% in October. Although still low by pre-recession standards, wage growth now is close to the rate that might worry the MPC.
The growing perception that the U.K. MPC will lag further behind the U.S. Fed in this tightening cycle than previously has pushed sterling down to $1.49, a long way below its post-recession peak of $1.72 in mid-2014. But this has done little to enhance the overall competitiveness of U.K. exports, and net trade still looks likely to exert a major drag on real GDP growth in 2016.
If the collapse in oil sector capex and the strong dollar were going to push the industrial economy into recession, it probably would have started by now
Eurozone inflation continued its slow rebound last month. Final CPI data showed that inflation rose marginally to 0.2% in November from 0.1% in October, a bit higher than the initial estimate of 0.1%. The upward revision was due to marginally higher services inflation at 1.2%, compared to the initial 1.1% estimate. Non-energy goods inflation eased slightly to 0.5% from 0.6% last month. We have received push-back on our call for higher inflation next year, but core inflation is a lagging indicator, and it can rise independently of the story told by GDP or survey data. Core inflation tends to peak during recessions, and only starts falling later as prices are adjusted downwards, with a lag, to the cyclical downturn.
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.
One of the most eye-catching features of the U.K.'s economic recovery has been the strength of job creation. It took seven-to-eight years for employment to return to its pre-recession peaks after the recessions of the early 1980s and 1990s. By contrast, employment rescaled its 2008 peak in mid-2012, and it has risen by a further 6% since.
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.
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.
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.
The Brazilian labour market is slowly healing following the severe recession of 2015-16. The latest employment data, released last week, showed that the economy added 35K net jobs in August, compared to a 34K loss in August 2016.
The big difference between economic cycles in developed and emerging markets is that recessions in the former tend to be driven by the unwinding of imbalances only in the private sector, usually in the wake of a tightening of monetary policy.
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.
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.
The Eurozone labour market is slowly healing following two severe recessions since 2008. Unemployment fell to a two-year low of 10.3% in January, and yesterday's quarterly labour force survey was upbeat. Fourth quarter employment rose 1.2% year-over-year, up from 1.1% in Q3, pushing total EZ employment to a new post-crisis high of 152 million.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
A Two-Quarter Recession Now Is Unavoidable...Bolder Stimulus Is Needed To Secure A H2 Recovery
Activity Data Confirm China's Nightmare Q1...Japan In For A Full-Year Contraction...Korea Should Be Able To Avoid A Technical Recession....India's Policymakers Are Reasonably Quiet, For Now
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.
China's Growing Demand-Supply Mismatch...Three Straight Quarters Of Contraction In Japan...Covid Defeated, But Korea's Economic Hit Isn't Over...An H1 Recession In India Is All But Guarenteed
Expect a Rare Q/Q Fall in Chinese GDP In Q1...A Technical Recession In Japan is on the Cards...The Real Hit to Korean Trade will Start This Month...Post-Virus in Oil Will Help India's Recovery
We agree wholeheartedly with the consensus view that the economy would enter a recession in the event of a no-deal Brexit on October 31.
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.
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.
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%.
The Fed will raise rates by 25 basis points today, 11 years and six months since the previous tightening cycle began, in June 2004. This tightening, like that one, will end in recession eventually, but this time around we expect a garden-variety business cycle downturn rather than a massive financial crash and a near-death experience for global capitalism.
Q2's GDP figures create a terrible first impression, but a closer look suggests that the risk of a recession remains very low.
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.
The Markit/CIPS PMIs for August, slated for release over the next three business days, will be closely watched. They have provided the most resounding indication, so far, that Britain is heading for a recession. In July, the composite PMI--comprised of the manufacturing and services indices--fell to 47.5, from 52.4 in June, its biggest month-to-month fall since records began in 1998.
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.
This week's economic activity data for Brazil have been upbeat, indicating that the economy is recovering after a recession in the first half of 2014, but at a very gradual pace.
In one line: A German recession edges ever closer.
In one line: Avoiding a technical recession by small margin.
In one line: On hold at the technical low; the recession is ongoing.
Brazil's current account deficit is stabilizing following an substantial narrowing since early 2015, thanks to the deep recession.
In one line: A surprising upward revision, but the recession will worsen sharply in Q2.
In one line: Robust; the Q2/Q3 recession call is now even more difficult to sustain.
In one line: A rebound, but the overall message is still one of acute recession risk.
In one line: Germany's recession all but confirmed.
In one line: No recession here.
In one line: Underlying inflation pressures are falling, and we expect further declines across the year due to the recession.
In one line: Low oil prices and the recession push inflation down to cyclical lows.
In one line: Improving monetary trends suggest recession risk remains low.
In one line: Manufacturing is back in recession.
In one line: Ouch. The manufacturing recession continues.
In one line: Record low level signals a very deep recession.
In one line: Manufacturing is enduring a mild recession, but it probably won't deepen much further.
In one line: Don't take the PMI's recession signal literally.
In one line: The survey's poor track record recently means its recession signal should not be believed.
In one line: Is Germany in recession? Yes, if you ask the IFO survey.
In one line: Another hefty cut as the economy is heading for a deep recession.
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.
If you were looking just at investor sentiment in the Eurozone, you would conclude that the economy is in recession.
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.
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.
In one line: Stabilisation, not recession.
The trade war with China is not big enough or bad enough alone to push the U.S. economy into recession.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
In one line: Technical recession averted for now; but growth has stalled.
In one line: Sinking without a trace, but still not recessionary.
In one line: Weak, but not recessionary.
In one line: Germany edges closer to recession.
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.
In one line: Recession all but confirmed; over to you Berlin.
In one line: Germany is in recession, and worse is coming.
Chief Asia Economist Freya Beamish discussing Japans new stimulus package
Ian Shepherdson, chief economist at Pantheon Macroeconomics, discusses the dollar's impact on inflation and markets "overdoing" inflation and recession fears. He speaks on "Bloomberg Surveillance."
Chief U.K. Economist Samuel Tombs on U.K. Employment
What do the protests mean for Chile's economy?
Will EZ services hold their own amid weakness in manufacturing?
Is Covid-19 the main factor behind Mexico's poor economic performance?
Provocative notes from Ian Shepherdson, the Chief Economist at Pantheon Macroeconomics
Chief UK Economist Samuel Tombs on the latest PMI data
Chief Eurozone Economist Claus Vistesen on Eurozone Economies
Chief U.S. Economist Ian Shepherdson on U.S. Jobless Claims
Chief Eurozone Economist Samuel Tombs on Brexit
Chief U.S. Economist Ian Shepherdson on U.S. hiring
Ian Shepherdson's mission is to present complex economic ideas in a clear, understandable and actionable manner to financial market professionals. He has worked in and around financial markets for more than 20 years, developing a strong sense for what is important to investors, traders, salespeople and risk managers.
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