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CONSUMER CONSISTENCY

Since the peak in oil prices in June 2014, consumers saved some, spent some on nonessential items, and paid down some debt, even as measures of consumer sentiment soared. The big drop in gasoline prices has not provided a big lift to the consumer sector, which continues to struggle in this recovery, nor did it change the overall tepid trajectory of consumer spending.

A WEAK WEEK?

First quarter economic weakness will likely get plenty of attention this week, when the initial estimate of Q1 2015 GDP is expected to confirm tepid growth during the quarter. We continue to expect that the FOMC will begin to raise rates in late 2015, when it is “reasonably confident” that inflation will move back to its 2% objective over the medium term. Economic performance since the end of the recession has varied widely by state, with oil playing a key role.

BEIGE BOOK: WINDOW ON MAIN STREET 4/20/15

The latest Beige Book suggests that the U.S. economy is still growing at a pace that is at or above its long-term trend, and that some upward pressure on wages is beginning to emerge. Optimism regarding the economic outlook far outweighed pessimism throughout the Beige Book as it has for the

GAUGING GLOBAL GROWTH 4/13/15

The market continues to expect that global GDP growth will accelerate in 2015, 2016, and 2017, aided by lower oil prices and stimulus from the BOJ and the ECB, two of the three leading central banks in the world. The prospect for another year of decelerating growth in emerging markets remains a concern for some investors, who may still be waiting (in vain) for China to post 10 – 12% growth rates, as it consistently did during the early to mid-2000s.

EARNINGS RECESSION?

First quarter 2015 earnings may produce the first year-over-year decline since the financial crisis due to the drags of low oil prices and the strong dollar. Results for S&P 500 companies may exceed dramatically reduced expectations. We continue to expect earnings to drive stock market gains in 2015, as we stated in our Outlook 2015: In Transit, and we see better earnings prospects as the year progresses.​

 
Results: 39 Articles found.
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