Even in the best of circumstances, many countries will remain laden with debts that could stymie growth and create financial vulnerabilities. All these factors are, in some degree, dependent on whether or not the world succeeds in suppressing the virus. There are, however, reasonable explanations for the financial market behavior. Theoretically, equity prices should reflect expectations about the future, not the current state of affairs. And recently, there have been events that boosted expectations about future economic growth. These included the rollout of the vaccine and shifting expectations about the likely policy mix of the new US administration.
Perhaps most important was the takeover of the Senate by the incoming president’s own Democratic Party. Although news of that event was largely eclipsed by the events at the Capitol, it does set the stage for a likely shift in fiscal policy.
The free-fall was driven by a historic 34. 6% pullback in consumer spending as states closed down restaurants, malls, movie theaters and other outlets, and Americans avoided public gathering spots and travel out of contagion fears. Nearly every corner of the economy was battered, including business investment, housing, trade and government outlays. It has been difficult to keep up with news about the economic landscape over the past month. With all the chatter and short-term fluctuations in the data, it is important in times like these to cut through the noise and focus on long-term trends rather than daily headlines. Emerging markets have experienced a range of economic outcomes during the pandemic, but the common denominator has been a sudden temporary collapse in economic activity followed by a rise in debt. Although many emerging countries are now growing rapidly, the ability to fully recover from this situation will depend on many factors, not the least of which will be the speed at which vaccines are distributed in poorer countries.
Specifically, with control of the Senate, the Democrats will control the agenda and will be able to have the Senate vote on extra fiscal measures, some of which are likely to pass through the process known as reconciliation. Many investors likely expect this to have a favorable impact on economic activity if, for no other reason, then that such measures will protect disrupted households and businesses from financial distress. The absence of further stimulus would mean that, when current measures expire found in March, millions of homes is likely to face trouble, thus possessing a negative impact in overall economic activity. Typically the following table shows, regarding each market, the recent forecast for new structure starts.
We demonstrate that these text-based inputs accurately track a wide range of economic activity measures and that they have incremental forecasting power for macroeconomic outcomes, above and beyond standard numerical predictors. Finally, we use our model to retrieve the news-based narratives that underly “shocks” in numerical economic data. Most of that turmoil in the labor market came during the economy’s brutal economic slide in the April-June period.
However , while anything under 50 percent is contractionary, it is not necessarily recessionary. In the meantime, the number of new car sales – a key barometer of the economy that reflects the strength of the consumer – increased to 17. 2 million annualized units in September, pushing the 2019 average above 17 million for the first time.
We propose an approach to measuring the state of the economy via textual analysis of business news. We then use our news attention estimates as inputs into statistical models of numerical economic time series.