The U.S. consumer debt burden is as low as it’s been in 30 years as savings increase and employment numbers are full. Today we discuss the United States’ need for continued immigration and why increasing interest rates aren’t reflected in money market accounts. Listen in to hear more about U.S. economics and Europe’s end of quantitative easing.
This week’s Inside the Economy with SH&J continues the discussion on oil and the challenges hindering the much anticipated boost in production from Iran. Meanwhile, Europe’s banking system is under pressure to keep its zero-interest and negative-interest rate policies in place for the foreseeable future. Listen in for commentary on the aftermath of the Brussels and Paris attacks and how it is affecting tourism and putting further pressure on the European banking system. We discuss how the first quarter is wrapping up and the outlook for the remainder of 2016.
During the summer months some of us like to cook outside – and slow cookers seem to be all the rage this year! The food may seem to take forever to cook, and we often can become impatient waiting for signs of progress.
We may have the same feeling when contemplating most of the world investment markets. Investors have finally decided that a diet of foreign bonds paying negative interest is unhealthy. While in the U.S. we are still w-a-i-t-i-n-g for the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates. The latest forecast is for a September rate increase. We can only hope! In the meantime the bond markets are suffering and definitely cooling. We saw big declines in bond values and returns for the second quarter, as hope for an interest rate increase in June evaporated.
Consumers in the U.S. enjoyed a little relief as energy costs declined – a useful prelude to the summer driving season instead of the usual increases in gas prices. Housing is recovering, employment is stabilizing and, although excruciatingly slow – we are indeed cooking here!
In this week’s economic discussion, Larry takes us through more details about the Eurozone and Greece, looks at deficits and surpluses from the Congressional Budget Office, gives us some education on U.S. Fiscal Multipliers and ends with a picture of natural gas consumption in Europe. As usual, it is an enlightening discussion and an excellent way to learn about the economy.
At Sharkey, Howes & Javer, we have formal Investment Committee meetings. Every two weeks, we discuss recent market trends, the economy and strategize for the future.
Within each of these meetings, Larry Howes provides a very interesting and detailed report on the economy; questions are raised and insightful conversations pursue.
We have decided to open these internal economic discussions up to our clients by creating a new “series” where we record the economic portion of the investment meetings, and invite you to listen along with us.
The current audio was recorded in our meeting last Monday, December 8th. Please note that this was prior to last week’s market selloff, due to the ongoing decline in oil prices, and this will be addressed in next week’s economic discussion.
Please check the volume on your computer and have your headphones ready. We look forward to hearing what you think in the comments section below!