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Federal Reserve focus is on inflation, not recession. Central bank coordination with other countries is essential for world economic health.

Federal Reserve Focus is On Inflation, Not Recession Fears

By Interest rates, Investing, Stocks No Comments
The Federal Reserve Focus is On Inflation, Not Recession Fears

The Federal Reserve Focus is On Inflation, Not Recession Fears

The Federal Reserve’s focus on inflation must co-exist with the recent sell-off in equity markets. This has led to a lot of discussion about the possibility of a recession. Some pundits have even begun referring to the current climate as a “bear market” or a “corrective period.” Despite these fears, we have yet to see any evidence of an imminent recession. The Fed is currently focusing on inflation and not recession fears because they know that there are four key risks from continuing to raise interest rates: A slowing economy, deflation, financial instability and stagflation. We can think of the Federal Reserve as having two main goals: Keep unemployment low and make sure prices (inflation) don’t continue higher. The risk of recession is one of many factors they consider when making decisions about raising interest rates. The Fed must consider all four factors when deciding to continue to raise interest rates.

Inflation is the Federal Reserve Primary Concern

Discussion among pundits and investors revolves around the question of whether the stock market has “corrected” or entered a “bear market.” From the perspective of the Federal Reserve, the real risk is not a decline in the stock market, but a decline in the price of goods and services. The Fed considers a stock market correction as needed after a long period of strong performance to remain healthy. The Fed’s preferred measure of inflation: The core Personal Consumption Expenditure (PCE) price index. The core PCE price index measures inflation by removing the most volatile components of the consumer price index, like food and gas. In the Fed’s view, if the core PCE price index begins to decrease, it may be a sign of the economy growing too slowly.

The Labor Market 

The unemployment rate has fallen to 3.5%. The Federal Reserve preferred measure of the labor market is the Labor Market Conditions Index (LMCI). The LMCI measures employment growth and whether workers are switching jobs. When the LMCI is falling, it suggests that the labor market is not as tight as it may seem. The Current Employment Situation Survey, which measures the unemployment rate, is almost as reliable as the LMCI.

FOMC: Interest Rates are Stable and Does Not Signal Recession 

One of the most common myths about the stock market is that a rising interest rate is a sign of a recession. In fact, the current level of interest rates is not an indication of how strong or weak the economy is. It does not signal that a recession is imminent, nor does it predict what will happen to the economy in the future. The Federal Reserve has been raising interest rates because it expects inflation to rise in the future. The Fed’s preferred measure of inflation, the core PCE price index, is 4.8%. If the Fed does not raise interest rates, they risk allowing inflation to rise even higher.

Recession Fears Don’t Change the Timeline for Interest Rates

The Federal Reserve is expected to raise interest rates to tame inflation. They may lower rates during times of recession, but not at the expense of out-of-control inflation. Inflation control is the priority. The Fed tries to be transparent and projects long-term plans for interest rates. This is called the Fed’s “dot plot,” and it shows how each member of the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) anticipates interest rates will change over the next several years.

Conclusion

Think of the Federal Reserve as having two main goals: Keep unemployment low and make sure prices (in this case, inflation) don’t go too low or too high. The risk of recession is one of many factors they consider when making decisions about raising interest rates. Despite what pundits and investors are saying, the current sell-off in equity markets does not signal an imminent recession. The Fed is focusing on inflation and not recession fears because they know the four major risks: A slowing economy, deflation, financial instability and stagflation.     Mark Waggoner – 8/11/2022     FEL-PM-220811

Trading futures and options involves substantial risk of loss and is not suitable for all investors.  Past performance is not necessarily indicative of future results. This matter is intended as a solicitation to trade futures and options.           

Financial markets today may be influenced by the political climate.

Financial Markets Today and the Political Climate

By Interest rates, Investing, Stocks No Comments
Financial markets today may be influenced by the markets perceived political climate.

Financial markets today may be influenced by the markets perceived political climate.

 Financial markets today can be heavily influenced by the political climate. What’s going on in Washington, D.C., and other world capitals can have a big impact on how investors feel about the economy and how they respond to new information about stocks and bonds. If you want to invest wisely for the long term, you need to understand how political factors can affect financial markets and what that might mean for your portfolio. In this article, we explore how political climate affects financial markets so that you can make smart decisions with your money no matter what is happening politically.

What is the Political Climate?

There is no exact definition for the political climate, but it broadly refers to the general political environment. This includes issues such as the overall stability of the government, the strength of the economy, and the amount of administrative pressure on the government. The political climate is closely related to the economic climate, which refers to the general state of the economy. This environment can, and will, shift over time, so it’s important to monitor developments closely. If you want to invest wisely, it’s important to understand how political factors can affect financial markets and what that might mean for your portfolio. In addition to closely monitoring the political climate, it’s also important to track economic indicators, such as employment rates and inflation rates, as they affect financial markets and your investing decisions.

The Importance of the Political Climate to Financial Markets

The political climate is important because it can have a significant impact on financial markets. Political events can cause short-term fluctuations in the stock market, and longer-term changes in the political climate can affect stock prices, interest rates, and other financial indicators. Political uncertainty can cause investors to become more cautious and less willing to take risks. This could lead them to sell stocks and invest in less risky assets, such as government bonds. Either of these moves could cause the value of stocks to go down and lead to a drop in bond prices. Meanwhile, investors might become more willing to take risks, which could lead them to buy stocks and increase the demand for bonds. This could cause the value of stocks to go up and lead to a rise in bond prices.

How the Political Climate Affects Financial Markets

When political events occur, they can have an impact on the financial markets. Investors respond to these events by adjusting the risk they take. If investors become more cautious, they will shift their portfolios toward less risky assets. If investors become more aggressive, they will shift their portfolios toward stocks. The following are some examples of political events that could cause investors to shift their portfolios: – The government could enact new legislation, such as tax laws, new regulations, trade tariffs, or other legal changes. – There could be a change in the leadership or a major administrative change, such as the appointment of a new cabinet member. – There could be a significant change in the geopolitical climate, such as a change in relations with a foreign country. – There could be an unexpected event, a natural disaster or a significant economic report that causes investors to become more cautious or aggressive.

Inflation is a worldwide phenomenon

Inflation is one of the biggest threats to long-term investors. It happens when there isn’t enough goods and services produced to meet the demand. Prices for goods and services rise as a result. Inflation is the rate of price increase for a basket of goods. When prices rise, a dollar buys less. Inflation has the potential to erode an investor’s purchasing power because it reduces the value of current and future investment returns. With a stronger economy, there is a larger demand for goods and services. To meet this increased demand, companies raise their prices, which causes inflation. Inflation is more of a global phenomenon than a purely political one. It’s not something that is solely decided by the government. Inflation is a more natural part of human economic behavior. Financial markets can then be affected as investors predict that central banks may intervene.

Election Cycles and Market Timing

The political climate plays an important role in the timing of financial market decisions. Investors may be more or less likely to sell stocks, buy or sell bonds, or change investment strategies depending on the political climate. Investors may be more likely to sell stocks or shift their portfolios toward less risky assets during an election year, when there is additional political uncertainty. The reasoning behind this phenomenon is that investors may be concerned about a change in government leadership, which could affect the economy, market conditions, and the value of stocks. Investors may be more likely to buy stocks or shift their portfolios toward riskier assets during non-election years, when there is less uncertainty about government policy. This could be due to a number of factors, including a stronger economy that leads investors to be more optimistic about future market conditions.

Government Debt and Deficits

Debt is a promise that one person or government makes to another person or government to repay a certain amount of money at a future date. Deficits occur when government spending is greater than government receipts, such as taxes. Elected official may use various political maneuvers to reduce debt or enact policies that increase revenues, such as raising taxes. Some investors may be more likely to sell government bonds if they are concerned about government debt and deficits. If government debt becomes too large, it may make it difficult for the government to pay back its loans. This could cause investors to worry that there may be future inflation as a result of increased government spending.

Economic Growth and Confidence

The economy is a complex system of production and exchange that affects a country’s financial markets. Investment decisions are often affected by economic indicators, such as gross domestic product (GDP), which measures growth in the economy. Investors may be more likely to buy stocks and shift their portfolios toward riskier assets based on economic indicators. The stock market is often driven by investor confidence. When the economy is growing, investors tend to be more optimistic and more willing to take risks with their money. This leads them to invest in stocks and other risky assets. When the economy is in a recession, investors may become pessimistic and willing to take fewer risks with their money. This leads them to shift their portfolios toward less risky assets.

Summary

The political climate is an important factor to consider when investing for the long term. The political climate can have an impact on financial markets through changes in investor sentiment and changes in government policy. When investors are more cautious, they are more likely to sell stocks and purchase government bonds. This can cause stocks to go down and government bond prices to go up. When investors are more optimistic, they are more likely to buy stocks and sell government bonds. This can cause stocks to go up and government bond prices to go down. Keep an eye on the political climate. It can change quickly, so it’s important to keep tabs on what is going on in Washington, D.C.

Trading futures and options involves substantial risk of loss and is not suitable for all investors.  Past performance is not necessarily indicative of future results. This matter is intended as a solicitation to trade futures and options.          8/4/2022 – Mark Waggoner    FEL-PM-220804

Predicting the Future of Interest Rates

By Interest rates, Investing No Comments
Predicting the Future of Interest Rates

Predicting the Future of Interest Rates

Interest rates impact everything from buying a new home to starting a business to saving for retirement. Since interest rates are such an important indicator of the health of the economy and financial markets, what they do next is something everyone wants to know. The good news is that there are plenty of knowledgeable people who have strong opinions on this topic. Moreover, there’s no shortage of predictions about what will happen in the future regarding interest rates. These views aren’t all created equal, but they can all be helpful when attempting to understand where things might head from here. From avid bears to giddy bulls, we take a look at some of the experts who are offering their thoughts on the future of interest rates.

What Does the Future Hold When Predicting Interest Rates?

The future of interest rates is a crucial question for everyone, particularly those with debt. Anyone who has a mortgage, a car loan, or a credit card will want to know if the rate they’re paying will increase. If it does, it could make it more difficult to cover expenses. Everyone who is saving for retirement will be interested in how the stock market reacts to these interest rate predictions. Finally, a strong economy needs cheap money to thrive, so many investors will want to know where interest rates are headed in the short and long term. As you can see, interest rate predictions impact nearly everyone, and the future of interest rates is a crucial question for the global economy and financial markets.

Short-Term Interest Rates Will Continue Rising – Fed Sees More Inflation

A strong majority of economists and other experts are predicting that short-term interest rates will rise in the near future. Long-term rates are expected to rise as well, but not as quickly. The Federal Reserve will likely continue to raise short-term rates, particularly in 2022. The Fed sees inflation as a significant threat and they’d like to bring it back down to a healthy level. So, they’ll likely raise rates until inflation is under control. Short-term rates have been below 4% since 2016, and many experts expect them to rise to 5-6% or above in the next year or two.

Long-Term Rates Rise But Don’t Expect a Big Jump…Yet

Long-Term interest rates will rise, but the magnitude of that rise will depend on the health of the economy. Many experts expect them to rise to 5-1/2% or above.. If the economy continues to improve, experts expect long-term rates to rise significantly. If the economy falters, however, long-term rates will likely remain low or fall. Currently, long-term interest rates are still near their lowest levels in 50 years. With so many indicators pointing to a strong economy, long-term rates are expected to rise. How much they rise, however, remains to be seen. Currently, long-term interest rates are around 4.0%, and many experts expect them to rise to about 5.0% or above in the next few years.

Experts Are Divided – Economy Boom or Bust?

Many experts expect the economy to grow at a healthy rate over the next few years. Others, however, expect a bust that could lead to a recession. The difference between these viewpoints comes down to the health of the business and consumer sectors. If business confidence continues to improve, many experts expect the stock market and economy to thrive. If, however, business confidence falls due to a significant event or change, experts expect the economy to falter. Likewise, if consumer confidence continues to improve, many experts expect the economy and stock market to thrive. If, however, consumer confidence falls due to a significant event or change, experts expect the economy to falter. The overall health of the business and consumer sectors will determine the fate of the economy. Experts are divided on what the economy will look like in the next few years.

A Word of Caution for Consumers and Investors

As interest rates rise, the cost of borrowing money also increases. This could put added pressure on households as borrowing becomes more expensive. It could also impact the housing market and reduce the amount of money available for investors to use in the stock market. Furthermore, rising interest rates indicate that there is more optimism about the economy and that the Fed believes it is growing stronger. This could add upward pressure to the stock market by encouraging investors to purchase equities as a way to take advantage of the growing economy. However, it could also cause the stock market to fall if there is too much optimism. There have been many times in the past when investors became too optimistic about the future of the economy and stocks, leading to significant dips in the market.

Bottom Line

Experts are divided on the future of interest rates, as they have been for years. All we can do is continue to monitor these experts’ predictions and see where the economy is headed. A word of caution, however, is that interest rates do not follow a straight path. They fluctuate, often significantly, on a consistent basis. This is why it’s important for consumers and investors to be aware of economic indicators and how they might affect their spending and saving. The future of interest rates may be uncertain, but by understanding what experts are predicting and how it could impact you, you can better prepare and navigate the financial waters.            

Trading futures and options involves substantial risk of loss and is not suitable for all investors.  Past performance is not necessarily indicative of future results. This matter is intended as a solicitation to trade futures and options.  07/14/2022 – by Mark Waggoner     FEL-PM-220714