The first half of 2020 has been unexpected, to say the very least. Our outlook for the year quickly became obsolete with the rapid spread of COVID-19 and accompanying lockdowns across the globe, which have stymied economic activity and caused an unprecedented destruction of demand.
Two weeks ago, I wrote about some burgeoning “green shoots” that offered early, encouraging signs of economic recovery around the world.
Weekly Market Compass: Powell pledges to support the economy, but notes more Congressional help may be needed
Last week saw a massive sell-off for stocks globally. The initial trigger seems to have come from US Federal Reserve Chair Jay Powell’s press conference following the June 9-10 meeting of the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC).
Weekly Market Compass: Encouraging signs were seen in job creation, manufacturing and service activity, and auto sales
The last time I used the term “green shoots” was the late spring and summer of 2009.
Weekly Market Compass: The WPA put millions back to work during the Great Depression. Could this be a model for 2020 and beyond?
Unemployment rates for many countries are sky high and likely to remain high for some time.
In the last several weeks, stocks have exhibited weakness and higher volatility. I am convinced that rising US-China tensions are behind this, and that the potential for a reignition of the US-China tariff war could be the single biggest risk to the US stock market this year.
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Weekly Market Compass: I believe Congress needs to help American households remain solvent through further stimulus
As expected, the US Employment Situation Report for April was abysmal. Unemployment rose dramatically as pandemic lockdown measures were implemented across the US, with hospitality and leisure posting the biggest job losses.
Weekly Market Compass: Some countries and states are easing lockdowns, while politicians debate what to do next
One month ago in this blog, I noted that April would be a critical month to gauge the global response to the COVID-19 pandemic.