Macro Briefing: 12 February 2024

* US recession risk may be fading, but political risk is rising, warn economists
* Inflation, earnings and retail sales are in focus for this week’s data updates
* US Q1 GDP nowcasts via Fed banks (NY and Atlanta) indicate 3%-plus growth
* Several valuation metrics suggest US stocks are becoming relatively pricey
* Estimates of neutral rate imply Fed policy is highly restrictive
* Empty office space is increasingly catching Wall Street’s attention
* Policy-sensitive US 2-year Treasury yield rises to two-month high:

The recent rally in US stocks is expected to continue and set new record highs, based on the S&P 500 Index’s track record following new peaks. “Since 1950 the blue-chip index has typically hit multiple all-time highs in the 12 months after it has once breached a record, providing more than a year has passed since its previous high, according to Keith Lerner, chief market strategist at Truist Advisory Services,” Financial Times reports.

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