30 Oct Possible Halloween Scares for Markets and the Economy
It’s a tradition here to write about what scares us around Halloween each year. The past few years have offered plenty of material to use in these annual commentaries, but with wars in Israel and Ukraine ongoing, Washington, D.C. dysfunction reaching new heights, the unrelenting rise in interest rates, still-high inflation, unaffordable housing, tight financial conditions, and a Federal Reserve (Fed) that has not yet signaled it’s done hiking rates, the list seems to be a bit longer and scarier than it usually is. But these are risk factors, not our base case. Keep in mind there are plenty of positives at the same time, including easing inflation, the resilient economy bolstered by a healthy job market, growing earnings, and the strong possibility that the Fed is done hiking rates.