Steeper and Cheaper

While further gains will be harder from here, indicators continue to point to a supportive backdrop for yields and the yield curve, with the latter historically tending to steepen through US elections In our October monthly report (The Case for Banks – October...

US Economy Bottoming

The key difference between our recession methodologies and the NBER’s is that we rely on leading indicators to identify the end of a recession in real time, whereas the NBER prefers to wait for confirmation from coincident and lagging data, following data revisions....

Plenty of Cover for Fed to Maintain the “Big Ease”

In our Market Ledger, one of the “debits” for the market is chronic insolvency. We have not really begun to see the full impact on jobs and businesses due to improved unemployment benefits, stimulus cheques and business lending schemes, but that will change as...

Pandemic a Potential Trigger for QE in EM

The unparalleled nature of the response to the COVID-19 crisis – indiscriminately triggering sudden-stops across economies – suggest that some emerging markets could be closer to crossing the Rubicon into full-blown QE. Many EM central banks already purchase...

Another Yield Curve Red Herring

After first inverting last year, the 3m10y yield curve recently re-inverted, prompting the usual slew of mechanical recession predictions. However, not all inversions are equal. The top-left chart shows that almost all of the YTD decline in 10y yields is from the fall...

Momentum under fire as confidence softens

With consumer confidence measures released a couple of weeks ago, we have observed an interesting divergence between the University of Michigan consumer sentiment index and Conference Board consumer confidence index (top-left chart). When we plot the spread and...

Trading a Bear Market

This post was taken from our January 8th weekly report. We would characterise US equity indices today as being in a bear market. The official definition is a 20% decline from the recent high, close to close, but what does this mean in practice for investors? (The...

Headwinds for Housing and Autos

Earlier this year we wrote a Thematic piece on autos arguing that we would see auto companies cut prices to move inventory, idle plants and produce fewer cars. We have already seen a slowdown in car sales, and some manufacturers have guided to lower production this...

Peak in Heavy Truck Sales Point to Cyclical Pain

Heavy truck sales are oddly a good leading indicator for the economy.  It is odd because a lot of industrial production is coincident with the business cycle.  However, if you go back over forty years, you can see that recessions have always been preceded by a decline...