U.S. Outlook: Is the economy accelerating or slowing down?

Scott Anderson
Chief Economist

It’s not only the stock market that’s throwing off more mixed signals and increased volatility these days.

Graph showing different leading indicators for economic performance.The tea leaves on the U.S. economy have become harder to read as well.

For more on this, see highlights of my report below, followed by a link to the full U.S. Outlook, delivered on Feb. 23.

Key observations:

  • The U.S. labor market continues to run hot. We look for the U.S. unemployment rate to move a tenth of a percentage point lower to 4.0% when the February jobs report is released.
  • Existing home sales have dropped sharply for two consecutive months now.
  • Economic indicators are still generally beating analysts’ expectations, but not by as much as they were just a month ago.
  • Our estimate for Q1 GDP growth slips to 2.0%, as real consumer spending continues to lag the fourth quarter growth rate.

 

Read my full report.

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Investment Insights: Tariffs step up as Yellen steps down

Wade Balliet
Posted by Wade Balliet
Investment Strategy
Large cargo shop loaded with steel parked at a loading dock at dusk, as equipment lights are reflected in the water beneath the ship.

As a whole, earnings for S&P 500 companies have been remarkably strong this quarter.

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U.S. Outlook: A softer start to the year

Scott Anderson
Chief Economist
Two signs in store window for sales - 50% and 70% - with reflection of shoppers faintly visible.

Unfortunately, the period of 3% GDP growth appears to already be in our rear-view mirror.

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Investment Insights: Back in the saddle again

Wade Balliet
Posted by Wade Balliet
Investment Strategy
Two construction workers in hardhats looking up at a partially finished highway bridge.

Now that the dust has settled from the correction, we are more positive in our stance on stocks over the near-term.

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U.S. Outlook: Market volatility takes center stage

Scott Anderson
Chief Economist
Graph showing recent spike in stock market volatility.

After months of abnormally low financial market volatility, risk is suddenly a two-way street again.

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