Post Tagged with: "Federal Reserve"

Yellen: The relationship between the slope of the yield curve and the business cycle may have changed

Yellen: The relationship between the slope of the yield curve and the business cycle may have changed

The biggest takeaway from Chair Yellen’s press conference was her belief that there is “reason to think the relationship between the slope of the yield curve and the business cycle may have changed.” To me, this suggests that some Fed officials will be inclined to disregard a flattening yield curve as a market signal. Some thoughts below

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Minsky’s financial instability hypothesis and the Fed’s reaction function

Minsky’s financial instability hypothesis and the Fed’s reaction function

As the Federal Reserve meets today to decide how to communicate its messaging on future rate hikes and balance sheet reduction, financial stability will play a key role. The risk of overheating was real. So let’s put some framing around this issue and ask how the Fed reacts as the data come in down the line.

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As the Fed meets, expect expansion through 2018, but problems thereafter

As the Fed meets, expect expansion through 2018, but problems thereafter

Given where we are right now, I think this expansion will continue through the end of 2018. And I want to talk about what that means in the context of my last post and recent BIS warnings on financial markets.

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We are in the most dangerous period in the business cycle

We are in the most dangerous period in the business cycle

Why would I be writing about ‘danger’ when we are experiencing the first synchronized global economic upturn in over 8 years? It’s the business cycle.

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Corporate tax cuts and monetary offset could mean recession

Corporate tax cuts and monetary offset could mean recession

Tax cuts in the US will accelerate the Fed’s timetable and increase the potential of curve inversion and eventual recession.

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Why the flattening yield curve doesn’t worry me yet

Why the flattening yield curve doesn’t worry me yet

If you look at the yield curve since the early 80s double dip recession, what you’ll notice is that inversion – where 2-year rates exceed 10-year rates – precedes every recession. Right now, we’re still 70 basis points from inversion though. So far from expecting a slowdown or a recession, I would sooner expect economic acceleration. Let me go into detail below.

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Policy divergence revisited

Policy divergence revisited

Three years ago, the Fed had begun tightening and all other central banks were still on easy street. Now, we are at an inflection point where other central banks are likely to tighten more than the Fed. That’s negative for the US dollar and positive for longer duration US Treasuries.

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Quick thoughts on the failure of Fed-engineered unemployment

I am a sceptic of thinking about low unemployment as a bad thing – which is what people who think about policy in terms of the Phillips curve do. Now a study by the Philly Fed is saying that the Phillips Curve is a poor forecasting tool. Will this have any meaningful impact on policy? Some thoughts below

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Some thoughts on full employment and this asset-based economic recovery

Some thoughts on full employment and this asset-based economic recovery

I see that Dartmouth economics professor Danny Blanchflower is talking about slack in the US labour market because he believes the Fed is premature in assessing its full employment mandate as fulfilled. I have a few thoughts on this issue I want to flesh out below and the crux of my narrative revolves around the over-dependence on monetary policy as a policy lever.

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How the Fed handles financial stability is key to avoiding a crisis

How the Fed handles financial stability is key to avoiding a crisis

I’ve got two objectives here. One is to talk about the Fed and the other is to discuss the evolution of the US economy. Most of what I want to say is upbeat, both on the Fed and the economy. And I’ll lead with that. I do have some doubts about the long-term though – and I want to give […]

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US economic growth still in the 2ish% channel

US economic growth still in the 2ish% channel

In the aftermath of the shale oil bust that sent the US economy to stall speed in 2015, growth has rebounded, but only to a sort of 2%ish level. Continued low inflation insures further low nominal GDP growth aka secular stagnation. But so far, this stagnation has not made the economy more susceptible to recession. Some brief thoughts below Here’s […]

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The wisdom of crowds and government bond markets

The wisdom of crowds and government bond markets

When you look at how markets are positioned, it’s clear that a lot of people see continued low growth for years to come – a veritable Japanification of the US economy. I hope this is one of those times that markets are wrong. But I am not willing to bet on the hope, just the opposite.

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