The Transcript 05.18.20

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Succinct Summary: Economic activity is trending positively as shelter in place orders are slowly lifted around the economy. The data is better than it was but still very bad for any other environment. Markets have discounted a quick return to normalcy, but this week's comments suggest that business leaders expect the recovery to take longer. For the hardest-hit industries, it could be years before they are operating at peak levels again. And even if demand snapped back today it could take months for the supply side of the economy to rev back up. Importantly, employment will likely rebound slower than the rest of the economy, which is a big deal for the demand side of the economy given how high unemployment numbers are. Editor's Request: This weekly newsletter is made possible by donations from our readers. If you like what you are reading, click here to donate (Our suggested donation: $10 per month). Help us keep The Transcript going.

The Transcript 05.11.20

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Succinct Summary: Companies are reporting signs of improvement in the economy. But the rebound is coming off such a low base that these numbers would still be considered very bad in any other environment. The duration of this rebound will depend heavily on whether or not there's a second wave of infections. Still, even without the virus it probably will take the economy a long time to recover from such a severe shock.  On an industry basis: private capital markets are searching for price levels; consumers are dreaming of the future; tech is chugging along; and the industrial/energy economy is feeling immense pain. Editor's Request: This weekly newsletter is made possible by donations from our readers. If you like what you are reading, click here to donate (Our suggested donation: $10 per month). Help us keep The Transcript going.

The Transcript 03.30.20

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Succinct Summary: It is quite clear by now that we are in a recession. The hope is that this is a different kind of recession and that we will be out of it quickly. But that depends on the trajectory of containing the virus. The good news is that things in China look better after containing the virus. Editor's Request: This weekly newsletter is made possible by donations from our readers. If you like what you are reading and want to help us keep it going, click here to donate (Our suggested donation: $10 per month).

The Transcript 03.09.20

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Succinct Summary:  The Coronavirus continues to spread globally and no one knows how bad this could get.  On the one hand we have projections of its exponential growth.  On the other is the hope that seasonality will help stem the tide.  In the face of a potential pandemic, the health of the economy seems like a trivial concern.  Still, this panic is having a material affect on economic activity and thereby markets. The Fed has tried to address this with lower rates, but even the Fed admits monetary policy can't do much to stop a virus. Where monetary policy will fail, hopefully modern medicine will succeed. Everyone, stay safe out there!

The Transcript 12.16.19

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Succinct Summary:  The consumer continues to show strength with higher holiday spending. Business spending isn't quite as strong though but companies, especially small businesses, are optimistic. As such, most CEOs don't expect a recession in 2020.  Historically, presidential election years are usually good for the stock market.