Economic News During the Week
During the week, the economic news was mixed. Manufacturing and housing sales were both weaker than expected, but consumer spending is expected to rise 5.2 percent on Cyber Monday as inflation-weary consumers put pressure on the economy.
Fed prepares to push the economy into recession
Despite the fact that the Federal Reserve raised interest rates last week, it hasn’t sunk the US economy into recession. It’s trying to slow down the economy and bring down inflation.
High inflation makes borrowing more expensive and causes rents to increase. High inflation also makes gas, diesel and ocean shipping costs more expensive. This makes the economy slow down. The Fed is fighting high inflation by raising interest rates, which makes borrowing more expensive and discourages spending.
While inflation is close to four-decade highs, the Fed still says it’s within reach of its 2% target. During a recession, the unemployment rate increases by half a percentage point.
Manufacturing slowing at mid-year as K-shaped recovery gives way to a K-shaped hangover
Despite the stock market surge, the world economy continues to contract in the first half of the year. Amid weak international trade, business confidence weakened. Global hours-worked declined by 5.2 percent, according to the International Labour Organisation. The US dollar index spiked near cycle highs against emerging markets outside of East Asia.
While the economy is beginning to show signs of recovery, economists are concerned about the K-shaped recovery. A K-shaped recovery would have a sharp split between economic sectors, ranging from urban housing to transport. However, it may be good for some parts of the economy, while it could accelerate wealth disparities.
A K-shaped recovery would mean continued growth, while an uneven recovery could cause a lot of pain. An uneven recovery could also mean a lack of stimulus and could push a country into a recession.
Housing sales pulled back in March on supply constraints
Despite a stronger than expected increase in housing starts in March, housing sales fell in March, weighed down by a limited supply of homes. The decline was the second straight month of declines, and the sales pace was weaker than expected. Despite the weak sales pace, the housing market continues to outperform the broader economy.
The sales pace of new homes is expected to remain strong through the end of the decade. The backlog of homes approved for construction is at an all-time high. The inventory of new single-family homes is moving closer to the balanced market. This is good news for homebuilders. However, the rising cost of materials and labor is a challenge.
Saudi Arabia extends aid package to Egypt
During March, Saudi Arabia extended its aid package to Egypt. The extension was part of a long-standing relationship between the two countries. The aid is meant to boost Egypt’s economic stability.
The aid is being pumped into Egypt’s market in the form of various investments. It is hoped that this will open up new funding channels. The most obvious one is through direct flights between the two countries.
In the aftermath of the Russian-Ukrainian conflict, Egypt suffered a lot. The country’s economy was badly hit. The country has been struggling with surging inflation, which reached a peak of over 16 percent in October. It has also had to deal with a coronavirus pandemic.
Adobe Analytics report predicts spending on Cyber Monday to rise 5.2 per cent as inflation-weary consumers have been putting pressure on consumers
Despite high inflation, a new report from Adobe Analytics predicts that US consumers will spend an estimated $10.8 billion to $12.7 billion on Cyber Monday. According to the report, shoppers spent their money on electronics, toys, and home decor.
The report also noted that “buy now, pay later” services continued to be a force in how people make purchases. The report said that 13% of consumers will use installment payment services to buy holiday goods.
While the total dollar amount spent on Cyber Monday is down from the $10.8 billion it generated last year, the total number of purchases was actually up. It could be a case of shoppers being more cautious in how they spend.
Council on Foreign Relations’ daily news briefing
Founded in 1921, the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) is a non-profit membership organization that focuses on international issues. It is based in New York City. The membership includes individuals from across the country as well as leaders from the government, academic, and business communities.
The Council’s mission is to provide a continuous conference on foreign policy questions affecting the United States. It publishes Foreign Affairs magazine, a bi-monthly journal. The Foreign Affairs Journal also publishes articles and news pieces on a variety of subjects.
The Council hosts two Independent Task Forces annually. Each task force is designed to assess current foreign policy issues and propose concrete recommendations. The Task Forces are led by experts in their field and are nonpartisan. The full report from each Task Force is released after a period of deliberation. The goal of each task force is to reach a meaningful consensus through non-partisan deliberations.