A Look Back at Q2 2018

July 11, 2018

As we start the second half of 2018, we find ourselves in a much different place than we were at the end of the first quarter. Back then, we were worried about a slowdown, and markets had pulled back. Now, despite very real policy concerns, the economy looks considerably healthier than it did then. Indeed, the markets have proven to be remarkably resilient in the face of growing policy risks.

In considering what the third quarter will look like, it is worth taking a more detailed look back at Q2 2018 and how it reversed a fairly weak first quarter.

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Economic Risk Factor Update: July 2018

July 10, 2018

Despite rising concerns as the Fed raised rates and trade tensions ballooned in June, the data remained significantly positive in all four major economic risk factors we track here. Job growth pulled back slightly on a monthly basis, but it continued to accelerate on an annual basis. Consumer confidence remained strong, and business confidence increased—taking the trend back to positive territory. Finally, while the Fed raised interest rates, as expected, it also endorsed the strength of the economic expansion in its statement and press conference, which was helpful. Overall, the strong economic data indicates that growth continues and that the soft spot earlier this year was just that.

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Monday Update: A Great Week for Economic Data

July 9, 2018

Last week was a very busy one, with reports coming in that covered the whole economy. This week’s releases will focus on prices, as well as provide a look into consumer confidence.

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Friday Quick Takes: Jobs, Trade War, and More

July 6, 2018

“There are decades where nothing happens; and there are weeks where decades happen.”

I don’t normally quote Lenin on this blog—or anywhere, for that matter—but this line is just too appropriate today. With everything going on, I thought I would offer some brief comments on subjects that, I admit, deserve—and will get—greater attention. But for now, here are my quick takes.

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A Look Back at the Markets in June and Ahead to July

July 5, 2018

As we begin July, let’s take a look back at the markets in June, plus what to expect in the month ahead.

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Monday Update (on Tuesday): Growth Continues, Signs of Slowing Mount

July 3, 2018

Last week started with some good news on the housing front. This week, we’ll see reports coming in that cover the whole economy.

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Market Thoughts for July 2018 [Video]

July 2, 2018

June was a mixed month, as U.S. markets went down with the Dow and up with the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq. Bond markets pulled back a bit on rising rates. There was also pullback abroad, in both developed and emerging markets. Still, the fundamentals are good, and a step-up in second-quarter growth is expected. Job growth is strong, consumer spending is accelerating, and business investment is solid.

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Upcoming Appearances

Tune into CNBC's Power Lunch on Friday, July 20, at 2:15 P.M. ET to hear Brad talk markets. 

Tune into Bloomberg Radio on Tuesday, August 7, at 4:15 P.M. ET to hear Brad talk markets. 


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