Daily Archives: Jun 8, 2018 at 07:43 am EDT

Is There A “Soft Data” Problem For Business Cycle Analysis?

Two analysts recently warned that so-called soft economic data has become less reliable for profiling the macro trend. “We believe the soft data, and subsequent forecasts, are suffering from a circular reference due to groupthink, herd mentality and political preferences,” Jim Bianco (Bianco Research) and Ben Breitholtz (Arbor Research & Trading) opined last month. If they’re right, indicators such as the ISM Manufacturing Index and the University of Michigan Consumer Confidence Survey offers less insight for monitoring the business cycle.
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Macro Briefing: 8 June 2018

Trump criticizes Canada and France on trade ahead of G7 summit: MarketWatch
Trump focuses on “attitude” over prep work ahead of N. Korea summit: Politico
US jobless claims fell last week, pointing to tighter labor market: Reuters
Consumer credit growth in US dips to 7-month low in April: MarketWatch
Survey data suggests Q1 GDP growth due for another downgrade: Reuters
Former Fed Chairman Bernanke: US faces speed bump in 2020: Bloomberg
Rising economic optimism isn’t boosting support for GOP candidates: NBC