July 6, 2021 — Hiring Rebounds Significantly in June

JULY 6, 2021 – HIRING REBOUNDS SIGNIFICANTLY IN JUNE The US economy added 850,00 new jobs in June, the biggest employment gain in 10 months.  Workers’ wages rose by 3.6 percent from a year earlier.  The unemployment rate in June was 5.9 percent, up from 5.8 percent in May; this is not bad news, but rather due to workers re-entering …

June 28, 2021 — PCE Up 3.4 Percent in May

JUNE 28, 2021 – PCE UP 3.4 PERCENT IN MAY The PCE (personal consumption index) rose 3.4 percent on a year-over-year basis in May, after rising 3.1 percent in April.  The increase was anticipated, but it was also the greatest increase recorded since April 1992.  The PCE is the index the Fed officials reference when addressing inflation. The data release …

June 21, 2021 — Fed Signals Its Open to Raising Rates in 2023

JUNE 21, 2021 – FED SIGNALS ITS OPEN TO RAISING RATES IN 2023 Policy makers signaled Wednesday they now expect to raise rates by late 2023, sooner than previously indicated.  At their monthly meeting, the officials discussed a tapering of the bond purchase program as well.  They anticipate the benchmark rate to be at 0.6% at the end of 2023, …

June 14, 2021 — Inflation Takes Hold, Highest in 13 Years

JUNE 14, 2021 – INFLATION TAKES HOLD, HIGHEST IN 13 YEARS US inflation figures came out last week; the highest in 13 years; with prices surging 5 percent in May. The increase was the largest since August 2008 when inflation was 5.4 percent.  The core inflation index (excluding food and energy) was up 3.8 percent in May, year over year, …

June 7, 2021 — New Jobs in May, but not Enough to Force a Policy Change

JUNE 7, 2021 –NEW JOBS IN MAY, BUT NOT ENOUGH TO FORCE A POLICY CHANGE Employers added 559,000 jobs in May, up from a revised 278,000 in April.  The unemployment rate fell to 5.8% from 6.1% last month.  It is an improvement, but still less than economists expected.  In March, 785,000 jobs were added.  The slow hiring pace could delay …

June 1, 2021 — Unemployment Claims Fall as Job Picture Improves

JUNE 1, 2021 – UNEMPLOYMENT CLAIMS FALL AS JOB PICTURE IMPROVES Initial unemployment claims kept falling last week.  New filings came in at 406,000, below analysts’ expectations for 425,000, and down almost 9 percent from the week before.  Even though this is an improvement, it is still well above the pre-pandemic average of 225,000 per week.  Continuing claims fell by …

May 24, 2021 — Fed has Started to SIgnal Shift from Easy Money Policy

MAY 24, 2021 – FED HAS STARTED TO SIGNAL SHIFT FROM EASY MONEY POLICY Last week, both the St. Louis Fed President James Bullard and Atlanta Fed President Raphael Bostic addressed the Fed’s policy response to the pandemic and hinted toward the possibility of an adjustment. Bullard said if they felt the pandemic was largely over, they could talk about …

May 17, 2021 — Inflation Picks Up Steam

MAY 17, 2021 – INFLATION PICKS UP STEAM Consumer prices jumped in April by 4.2 percent, the greatest movement in any 12-month period since 2008, as the recovery, post-covid, picks up steam.  In comparison, prices were up 2.6 percent for the 12-months ended in March. Policy makers are watching to see if this surge is temporary, as they have asserted, …

May 10, 2021 — Former Fed Chair Thinks Rates Need to Rise

MAY 10, 2021 – FORMER FED CHAIR THINKS RATES NEED TO RISE Janet Yellen, current Treasury Secretary and former Chair of the Federal Reserve, said last week interest rates may have to rise to keep the economy from overheating after the influx of trillions of dollars of stimulus spending. Later that day, in a slight reversal, she modified her call …

May 3, 2021 — Strong GDP Growth in the First Quarter

MAY 3, 2021 – STRONG GDP GROWTH IN THE FIRST QUARTER US GDP grew at a 6.4 percent seasonally adjusted rate in Q1, the Commerce Department said last week.  The figure is within 1 percentage point of its peak, achieved in late 2019, just before the coronavirus took hold.   Households, with billions of dollars of stimulus monies in hand, drove …