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Macro Briefing: 23 November 2021

* Biden chooses Jerome Powell for second term as Fed chair
* New economic challenges await Powell in his second term as Fed chair
* US expected to announce release of oil from strategic reserve
* Turkish lira crashes as President Erdogan vows more rate cuts as inflation surges
* Eurozone economic growth rebounds in November via PMI survey data
* UK input inflation reaches new record high in November via PMI survey data
* Will higher rate of women attending college vs. men change the economy?
* US existing home sales rose to 9-month high in October
* US economy rebounded sharply in Oct via Chicago Fed Nat’l Activity Index:

Macro Briefing: 22 November 2021

* Rebounding US Covid-19 cases suggest a holiday surge is coming
* US intel suggests Russia preparing for possible Ukraine invasion
* Protests turn violent in Europe against new Covid-19 restrictions
* Migrant crisis on EU-Belarus border may get worse, warns Poland’s PM
* Japan working on plan to release crude-oil reserves to help tamp down prices
* Supply chain bottlenecks may be easing, but labor shortages could persist
* Inflation appears pandemic-driven v. excessive spending generally
* US 10yr-2yr yield curve near four month low:

Book Bits: 20 November 2021

To the Brink of Destruction: America’s Rating Agencies and Financial Crisis
Timothy J. Sinclair
Summary via publisher (Cornell U. Press)
To the Brink of Destruction exposes how America’s rating agencies helped generate the global financial crisis of 2007 and beyond, surviving and thriving in the aftermath. Despite widespread scrutiny, rating agencies continued to operate on the same business model and wield extraordinary power, exerting extensive influence over public policy. Timothy J. Sinclair brings the shadowy corners of this story to life by examining congressional testimony, showing how the wheels of accountability turned—and ultimately failed—during the crisis. He asks how and why the agencies risked their lucrative franchise by aligning so closely with a process of financial innovation that came undone during the crisis. What he finds is that key institutions, including the agencies, changed from being judges to being advocates years before the crisis, eliminating a vital safety valve meant to hinder financial excess.

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Macro Briefing: 19 November 2021

* Dems delay wide-ranging spending bill after GOP leader stalls vote
* Pressure among Democrats builds for Biden to combat inflation
* Japan approves new stimulus spending bill to boost economy
* Austria announces new national lockdown as coronavirus crisis deepens
* German producer prices in October rose at fastest rate in nearly 60 years
* CVS will close 900 stores to respond to changing “consumer buying patterns”
* US Leading Economic Index rose sharply in October, point to strong growth
* Philly Fed’s manufacturing index reports accelerating growth in November
* US jobless claims fall for seventh straight week:

Macro Briefing: 18 November 2021

* Rising shipping costs could drive consumer inflation higher next year, UN warns
* Has loose Fed policy become a threat to jobs?
* Inflation call on Wall Street linked with extreme career risk
* Biden calls for FTC investigation of “illegal conduct” re: surging gas prices
* Japan, S. Korea consider releasing oil from strategic reserves after US request
* Turkey’s currency falls to record low vs. dollar ahead of central bank meeting
* Amazon says it will stop accepting Visa credit card payments in UK
* US housing starts were surprisingly soft in October:

Rebounds In US Payrolls, Industrial Output Are Unusually Strong

October data for the labor market and the industrial sector continue to paint a bright profile of recovery in absolute and relative terms vs. previous economic expansions. Retail sales data through last month, updated earlier in the week, suggest the same for personal consumption expenditures, which will be updated for October on Nov. 24. The weak outlier is personal income and it’s unclear if this key indicator will deliver more encouraging results in the upcoming report.

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