Interest rates are at 20-yr highs, yet unemployment is at 50-yr lows, core-PCE is near 30-yr highs, and Wall Street (and Fed) economic forecasts continue improving. What explains the disconnect between these unexpected outcomes and those expected by mainstream economic textbooks? Consensus says: monetary policy works with long & variable lags. We say: it’s the Fiscal, Stupid!
We believe Powell will “keep at it”. But we also believe he has misdiagnosed the 1970’s inflation, and his policy prescription may exacerbate the inflation illness. Higher rates are expected to cure inflation, but higher rates may unexpectedly cause inflation.
In 1H22 societies, economies & markets around the world were shaken by the actions of unelected policymakers in Russia (Putin-war), China (Xi-lockdown) & the U.S. (Powell-panic). Though all telegraphed, each proved more aggressive & consequential than expected. Regardless, our Key Themes are unchanged (pg-5). In fact, recent events further validate our “2001 Analog” (pg-6).
For the last 5+ years, our Key Themes (& portfolios) have been guided by our “2001 Analog” (pg-2). For the next 5+ years, we expect this analog will hold (U.S. entering long-wave leveraging cycle) but are prepared for elevated volatility in coming quarters (U.S. ending short-wave business cycle).
We have two new Key Themes for 2022; #1 Year of Rebalance, #2 Feels like 2018, May be 2000. Our “2001 Analog” remains intact. Pre-Covid, economic & market trends expected by this analog were emerging (elevated inflation, weaker USD, rising commodities, etc.). Post-Covid, they accelerated, fueled by extraordinary economic disruption & policy accommodation. We remain […]
We maintain our 2021 Key Themes & highlight Theme #1 “Early-Then, Late-Now”, which references our “2001 Analog”. In the prior period (Then), policy tightened Early (focus on price stability over maximum employment). In the current period (Now), we maintain that policy tightening will be Late (focus maximum employment over price stability). See “2021 Outlook”, 1/11/2021.
Our 2021 Key Themes remain intact with an emphasis on Theme #2 Big Turns Take Time. In the past year, the government sector has been the primary drive of total credit growth. In coming years, we believe the private sector is well positioned (current savings up & future real rates down) to fuel credit expansion. […]
Headed into 2Q21, we believe cyclically sensitive sectors/regions are due for a breather while Gold stock leadership is set to resume. We remain positive on cyclicals, but recent strength & sentiment appear stretched. Conversely, Gold sentiment is turning increasingly negative just as our fundamental outlook is turning increasingly positive.
Like the 9/11 attacks of 2001, the Covid crisis of 2020 was a “large shock” that has catalyzed substantial fiscal expansion. Like the period following the 2001 recession, we believe the U.S. has begun a new multi-year leveraging phase & economic/market trends that dominated the past decade are set to reverse. In coming years, we expect […]
In 2Q, unprecedented fiscal relief prevented the U.S. from spiraling into a depression. In 3Q, that support faded & the economic bounce stalled. In 4Q, without additional fiscal action, the economy is at-risk of turning down again (Fig-1).