Economy already shedding millions of jobs

Normally it takes months before economists are sure that the economy has fallen into a recession, but the scale of the declines in the range of daily indicators we’re tracking  mean it’s all but certain the economy is now contracting.
Michael Pearce Senior US Economist
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US Economics Weekly

Fed becoming more hawkish by the day

The continued surge in Omicron infections suggests that the disappointing December activity data will be followed by further weakness in January, but there are no signs that it will delay the Fed’s accelerating plans to tighten policy.

14 January 2022

US Data Response

Industrial Production (Dec.)

The 0.3% m/m decline in manufacturing output is probably a sign that Omicron-related employee absenteeism was already weighing on output by the end of last year. We expect an even bigger hit in January but, assuming that the surge in infections peaks soon, any losses in output should be fully reversed in February and March.

14 January 2022

US Data Response

Retail Sales (Dec.)

The 1.9% plunge in retail sales in December in part reflects what appears to be a problem with seasonal adjustment process around the holidays. The initial Omicron wave appears to have had only a modest impact. Nevertheless, it means fourth-quarter real consumption growth was a more muted 3.5% annualised, rather than the near-5% we were expecting.

14 January 2022

More from Michael Pearce

US Data Response

ISM Manufacturing Index (May)

While the headline ISM manufacturing index edged up to 61.2 in May, from 60.7, the main takeaway from the release was that shortages of workers, and not just raw materials, now appear to be playing a key role in holding back production and pushing up prices.

1 June 2021

US Economics Weekly

Fed remaining dovish as supply-side constraints mount

In a relatively quiet week, the few data releases we did get added to signs that shortages are pushing up prices further and restraining the pace of economic recovery.

21 May 2021

US Economics Update

How big a risk is the slowdown in vaccinations?

The sharp drop in demand for vaccines in recent weeks is a risk to our assumption that the rollout reaches critical mass over the coming months. That could mean infections and hospitalisations remain elevated, but we doubt that would be a big drag on the economic recovery.

4 May 2021
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