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The Conference Board Economics Watch® United States View—April 2019

The Conference Board, Inc., 8 pages, April 12, 2019
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Yield inversion reflects slowdown, not high recession risk.

Document Highlights

Growth has slowed since the middle of 2018 but will remain slightly above its long-term trend for the time being. Even with job creation slowing, the labor market remains a powerful force propelling consumption forward thanks to rapid wage growth and low unemployment. Consumer confidence has fallen back recently but remains at historically high levels. The yield curve became inverted briefly, which is normally an important recession indicator. In this case, the fall of the long rate reflected a change in the Federal Reserve’s views on inflation rather than growth and therefore should not be interpreted as a sign that recession risks are elevated. Of more concern is profits growth, which stalled at the end of 2018 and faces pressure from low business margins and slowing domestic and external demand growth.

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