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Another outsized increase in the ECI measure of wages would be awkward…
…But the Fed will argue that increased labor supply in the fall will prevent inflationary wage gains.
Q2 GDP growth was depressed by a wild swing in inventories; expect a rebound in Q3.
The strong June retail sales numbers don't prove anything, but they are consistent with the idea that people have sufficient resources, and sufficient inclination, to maintain—at least—their spending on goods, even as spending on reopening services surges.
What should we make of the news that manufacturing production fell outright in June—just—but that the Empire State manufacturing index has rocketed to a record high?
In one line: Powell sticks to the line as inflation rises.
Our June payroll forecast is 1,050K, based largely on the Homebase small business employment data, which were dead right in May and pretty close in April.
The early signs are that the June payroll numbers will be materially stronger than May's.
We have to talk about Covid again, unfortunately. The downward trend in U.S. cases appears to be over, for now, following a 94% drop from the January peak.
The astonishing 0.9% leap in the April core CPI won't be replicated in the core PCE deflator.
The April retail sales and industrial production numbers today are wild cards, with the former especially hard to predict after the stimulus-fuelled surge in spending in March.
It was easy for inflation doves to dismiss the 0.34% jump in the March core CPI as merely a correction, after three straight small increases, averaging just 0.06%.
The Council of Economic Advisors waded into the post-Covid inflation debate last week—actually, it would be more accurate to say that they dipped a tentative toe into the water—with a blog post arguing that "the likeliest outlook over the next several months is for inflation to rise modestly... and to fade back to a lower pace thereafter as actual inflation begins to run more in line with longer- run expectations.
Today's March CPI report will be the first to be hit by hugely adverse base effects on the anniversary of the Covid-induced collapse in prices for a broad range of services.
While we were out on our spring break, the broad trend in Covid cases was about flat, and the limited flow of macro data mostly was consistent with the idea that the economy is gathering pace.
We had planned to lead this Monitor with our take on
the idea that supply constraints are depressing housing market activity, but then we looked at the February personal income report, and changed our mind.
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