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WARC (August 1)

2022/ 08/ 02 by jd in Global News

“Whether it’s $18 for a two-ounce ginseng drink or $75,000 for a luxury mattress, the story is the same: Chinese consumers are becoming more frugal and the days of carefree spending have gone.” For over a decade, upmarket western brands have relied on China’s “expanding middle class” to drive growth, “but now, with a slowing economy, growing unemployment and a disruptive zero-COVID policy, those same middle classes are as likely to be saving as spending.”

 

Washington Post (May 8)

2022/ 05/ 09 by jd in Global News

“Why are Americans so gloomy about the economy? Jobs are plentiful and unemployment is back at pre-pandemic lows, yet sentiment is in the dumps.” Inflation is “the obvious answer,” but “a deeper force” better explains “why Americans are so upset: scarcity.” Inventories of homes and cars are at record lows while stockouts at supermarkets are double or triple standard levels. “There is good economic news, but until Americans can easily get ahold of what they want, too many will still feel like they’re not able to get ahead.”

 

Bloomberg (April 18)

2022/ 04/ 19 by jd in Global News

“The slower the Fed, the harder the landing.” Quick action while inflation expectations are “still well anchored” will minimize the “cost in terms of foregone output and higher unemployment.” Those costs will mushroom if the Fed “waits and allows inflation expectations to get out of hand.” A recession remains unlikely in 2022, but if there isn’t one “in the next couple years, it will only be worse.”

 

Wall Street Journal (April 7)

2022/ 04/ 08 by jd in Global News

“With inflation high and the job market tight… policy makers are inclined to reduce the Fed’s $9 trillion balance sheet at a much more rapid pace than they did during the quantitative-tightening round that began in October 2017, when inflation was much cooler and the unemployment rate was higher.” The resulting “quantitative-tightening tantrum could go on a lot longer than the taper tantrum did.”

 

San Jose Mercury News (October 4)

2021/ 10/ 05 by jd in Global News

“Throughout the Bay Area, companies both large and small are struggling to refill their ranks after last year’s business shutdowns drove laid-off workers to seek pandemic unemployment assistance to find new jobs in other industries. But as bigger companies offer increasingly generous rewards, smaller companies with leaner budgets are struggling to compete in a worker-driven market.”

 

Wall Street Journal (October 14)

2020/ 10/ 16 by jd in Global News

“The two economies will be factors driving the choices voters make in November. The reality for Mr. Trump: Many achievements of his first economy have been wiped out by the second.” The post-Covid economy was “historically bad. It sent unemployment to depths unseen in post-Depression records before reversing itself quickly but only partially, leaving the U.S. with an outlook that’s especially hard to forecast.”

 

Business Insider (October 5)

2020/ 10/ 07 by jd in Global News

“Pope Francis echoed Warren Buffett in blaming unfettered capitalism for rising inequality in a letter to the Catholic Church’s bishops titled Fratelli Tutti over the weekend.” The Pontiff “pointed to the pandemic’s fallout, including massive unemployment spikes around the world, as evidence that ‘not everything can be resolved by market freedom.’”

 

The Guardian (September 4)

2020/ 09/ 06 by jd in Global News

“Donald Trump is the most repellent individual ever to have sought, let alone won, the presidency of the United States. The latest proof comes in a quadruple-sourced account of Trump describing US troops who died for their country as ‘losers’ and ‘suckers.’” But it’s not just what he says. The nation’s economy now “lies in tatters, racked by mass unemployment. And yet, despite that record of lethal failure, this inadequate, malignant man still has the support of 42% of the American people.”

 

Reuters (May 14)

2020/ 05/ 15 by jd in Global News

Banks mainly seem to be provisioning for consumer debt, but “bad-debt risks could easily spread beyond consumer finance. Commercial real estate could face a brutal reckoning if white-collar workers in major cities decide not to return to the office when lockdowns lift.” When stimulus measures wind down, it will leave “over-indebted small and medium-sized enterprises vulnerable. Mass unemployment would lead to increased mortgage defaults.”

 

Financial Times (May 9)

2020/ 05/ 11 by jd in Global News

“The grim picture of the US labour market in the midst of a lockdown that has choked economic activity will increase concerns that any rebound from the sudden deep recession could take longer than was expected just a few weeks ago.” With unemployment at 14.7%, “its highest level since the second world war,” any chances of a V-shaped recovery now look remote.

 

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