June 2019 Market Commentary

ECONOMIC UPDATE Market sentiment turned notably bearish in May following a breakdown in U.S./China negotiationsThe Trump administration also decided to “weaponize” trade versus Mexico to affect immigration policyThe markets had largely been focused on the inflation...

May 2019 Market Commentary

ECONOMIC UPDATE Q1 GDP growth was better than expected, but the underlying components were less favorableDisinflation concerns have been voiced by some Fed leaders, leading the market to price a higher probability of a 2019 rate cutFed Chair Powell did not share those...

April 2019 Market Commentary

ECONOMIC UPDATE The sharp rally in Treasuries raised questions regarding the health of the U.S./global economy and future Fed policy The March FOMC meeting was more dovish than expected, with no projected rate hikes in 2019 according to the median participant forecast...

March 2019 Market Commentary

ECONOMIC UPDATE Risk markets maintained positive momentum in February on expectations of a dovish Fed and a trade agreement between the U.S. and China U.S. economic data trend has slowed relative to expectations in recent weeks January 30 FOMC minutes suggested the...

February 2019 Market Commentary

ECONOMIC UPDATE Riskier assets bounced back in January following a rough end to 2018 A more dovish Fed was the primary source of improved sentiment At the January meeting, the FOMC called for “patience” regarding future policy decisions, and a separate statement...

January 2019 Market Commentary

ECONOMIC UPDATE The Fed has received much popular criticism for raising the fed funds rate again in December, as Fed leaders resisted pressure to act in support of equity markets While markets are focused heavily on Fed interest rate policy, a greater unknown is the...

December 2018 Market Commentary

ECONOMIC UPDATE Financial markets remained volatile in November on concerns of tighter monetary policies, U.S./China trade relations, and slowing global growth Fed Chair Powell appeased the markets by tempering the perceived hawkishness of his October comments The...

November 2018 Market Commentary

ECONOMIC UPDATE Heightened market anxiety in October was attributable to the same general macro factors affecting markets in recent months, as well as corporate earnings concerns The domestic data trend remained solid over the month, including a better than expected...

October 2018 Market Commentary

ECONOMIC UPDATE Market sentiment improved in September, with investors seemingly shrugging off the latest negative trade headlines Italian fiscal woes present another potential source of market volatility in the near term The Fed continues to move forward with gradual...

September 2018 Market Commentary

ECONOMIC UPDATE The U.S. economy continues to expand at an above-trend rate, but potential headwinds from trade policies and emerging market stresses are fueling some anxiety in financial markets A stronger dollar and U.S. trade sanctions have brought emerging market...

August 2018 Market Commentary

ECONOMIC UPDATE • A positive meeting between Trump and Juncker temporarily eased trade concerns from a market perspective • Q2 GDP growth breached 4% for the first time since 2014, and the underlying details were positive for current quarter production • Higher...

July 2018

ECONOMIC UPDATE Trade tensions led financial news wires in recent weeks, particularly related to heightened rhetoric from the White House toward China The Treasury curve flattened further in June, sparking fresh questions regarding the potential for curve inversion...

June 2018

ECONOMIC UPDATE European political concerns in late May sparked rate volatility in the region not seen since the 2010-2012 Eurozone debt crisis The Fed is expected to move forward with a June rate hike, but the May FOMC minutes revealed an unexpected discussion of...

May 2018

ECONOMIC UPDATE Q1 GDP exceeded expectations despite weaker personal consumption Core inflation and wage growth has accelerated recently, particularly on a year-over-year basis Fiscal and political headlines continue to weigh on risk markets, and an escalation of...

April 2018

ECONOMIC UPDATE An anxious tone persisted in risk markets throughout March, keeping equity market implied volatility elevated above the post-crisis average. Concerns related to inflation pressures and tighter monetary policy shifted to threats of a potential trade...

March 2018

ECONOMIC UPDATE A correction in equity markets finally surfaced in February due primarily to concerns of rising inflation, higher long-end rates, and tighter monetary policy S. retail sales data were softer in January, but business sentiment, inflation, and labor...

February 2018

ECONOMIC UPDATE Positive momentum in risk markets continued in January (S&P 500 +5.7%) More hawkish rhetoric from ECB leaders weighed on long-end global government bond yields, and “quantitative tightening” remains a potential headwind for the global economy and...

January 2018

ECONOMIC UPDATE The biggest headline to start 2018 is the successful passage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) just before Christmas. The legislation was much anticipated throughout 2017, particularly by equity and corporate credit markets. As expected, the new law...

December 2017

ECONOMIC UPDATE This time last year, financial markets were very optimistic that a new political regime would bring forth fiscal stimulus and regulatory reforms sparking a new wave of economic growth and inflation. On the fiscal front, major tax reform was the most...

November 2017

In recent weeks, the two themes capturing the most attention from financial markets have been 1) the tax reform effort, and 2) the White House nominee for Fed Chair. In addition to fiscal policy (tax reform) and monetary policy (Fed leadership), the narrative could be expanded to include inflation and real growth. These factors had generally provided a boost to financial markets over the last several weeks, but the tailwinds subsided somewhat in late October.