Posts Tagged "Coronavirus"

Hints of Progress

A small glimmer of hope is concealed in recent data trends. Here are a few examples: The number of Covid-19 U.S. cases fell for the fourth week in a row (chart A, below), and deaths decreased for the first time last week (chart B, below). Unemployment insurance claims also fell for the fourth consecutive week (chart C, below). Domestic air traffic posted small gains last week (chart D, below) as did transit hubs (chart E, below). Credit spreads changed little for the third week in a row (chart F, below), and analysts trimmed less than $1 from S&P 500 earnings…

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Tracking Recovery

Stocks rallied last week on talk of reopening the economy and the S&P 500 is about half way back to February highs. The lockdown is helping to slow cases of coronavirus, but the economy is taking a beating as a result. Judging by recent data, the U.S. economy is likely contracting at an annualized pace in the range of -15% to -22% (chart, below). Over 10 million Americans filed for unemployment insurance in the past month. Estimates of potential job losses range from 23 million (Goldman Sachs) to 47 million (St. Louis Federal Reserve). The speed of the present downturn…

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