The Economic Insights Channel

How Should The Fed React To Tax Reform?

Test of Northern Trust

Schwab Market Perspective: The Big Picture Heading into 2018

Test of Schwab post

A Look at NYSE Margin Debt and the Market

Note: The NYSE has released new data for margin debt, now available through October. The latest debt level is up 0.3% month-over-month. The October data gives us an additional sense of recent investor behavior.

Regional Fed Manufacturing Overview: November Update

Five out of the twelve Federal Reserve Regional Districts currently publish monthly data on regional manufacturing: Dallas, Kansas City, New York, Richmond, and Philadelphia. The average of the five for November is 22.2, up from the previous month's 21.2.

Geopolitical Uncertainty and the Global Economy

Ben Bernanke and our panel of world-renowned advisors examine the outlook for global economic growth amid geopolitical shifts.

Home Prices Rose 6.2% Year-over-Year in September

With today's release of the September S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index, we learned that seasonally adjusted home prices for the benchmark 20-city index were up 0.5% month over month. The seasonally adjusted national index year-over-year change has hovered between 4.2% and 6.2% for the last thirty months. Today's S&P/Case-Shiller National Home Price Index (nominal) reached another new high.

Consumer Confidence Remains at 17 Year High

The latest Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index was released this morning based on data collected through November 14. The headline number of 129.5 was an increase from the final reading of 126.2 for October, an upward revision from 125.9, and remains at a 17-year high. Today's number was above the consensus of 124.0.

Richmond Fed Manufacturing: Robust Growth in November

Manufacturing firms reported robust growth in November, according to the latest survey by the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond. Because of the highly volatile nature of this index, we include a 3-month moving average to facilitate the identification of trends, now at 20.3 which indicates expansion.

FHFA House Price Index: Index Up 1.4% in Q3

The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) has released its U.S. House Price Index (HPI) for Q3 and September. U.S. house prices were up 0.3 percent on a seasonally adjusted nominal basis from the previous month. Year-over-year the index is up 6.4% (nonseasonally adjusted). Seasonally adjusted, the index is up 4.53% year-over-year.

Weekly Gasoline Price Update: WTIC Jumps 3%

It's time again for our weekly gasoline update based on data from the Energy Information Administration (EIA). The price of Regular and Premium were down four and nine cents, respectively, from last week. According to, Alaska has the highest average price for Regular at $3.21 and San Francisco, CA is the most expensive city, averaging $3.28. Alabama has the cheapest at $2.22. The WTIC end of day spot price closed at 58.11, a 3.0% increase from this time last week.

Taking Tally of the Global Rally

As we look ahead to 2018, it’s important to first recognize how significant 2017 has been for international markets. This is the eighth year of a global bull market, but prior to 2017, international markets had trailed the US for four consecutive years — and for six of the last seven years.

From Reflation to Inflation

The U.S. economy is shifting from reflation to inflation – and we have greater confidence in inflation returning to its medium-term trend and the Federal Reserve’s target. Better wage growth and potential fiscal stimulus should cement this transition.

Today’s Rational Exuberance

What many analysts still see as a temporary bubble, pumped up by artificial and unsustainable monetary stimulus, is maturing into a structural expansion of economic activity, profits, and employment that probably has many more years to run. There are at least four reasons for such optimism.

Dallas Fed Manufacturing Outlook: Expansion Slow but Solid in November

This morning the Dallas Fed released its Texas Manufacturing Outlook Survey (TMOS) for November. The latest general business activity index came in at 19.4, down from 27.6 in October.

October New Home Sales Up 6.2%, Beats Forecast

This morning's release of the October New Home Sales from the Census Bureau came in at 685K, up 6.2% month-over-month from a revised 645K in September. Seasonally adjusted estimates back to July were also revised. The forecast was for 625K.