Here is the real problem with the gap between the Fed and government’s outlook versus reality: the more they push to convince markets of the economy’s strength, the more they set us up for a crisis.When Americans finally wake up and realize the Fed and U.S. government were bluffing all along, there will be no safety net to keep the economy from crashing down.
Mexico has taken a pre-emptive step in the imminent trade dispute with the US, by canceling existing sugar export permits to the US in a dispute over the pace of shipments, Reuters reports citing a letter. The trade flare-up according to industry sources could temporarily disrupt supplies.
China's telecommunications giant ZTE has agreed to pay a total of $1.2 billion in penalties and plead guilty to violating U.S. sanctions on Iran, selling US technology to Tehran, and obstructing a federal investigation, ending a five-year probe that has raised trade tensions between the U.S. and China. The penalty was among the largest ever in a sanctions case.
In a report that will be closely scrutinized by the trade-sensitive Trump administration, today the Department of Commerce announced that the January trade deficit surged in January 2017, jumping from $44.3 billion in December (revised) to $48.5 billion in January, as imports increased more than exports.This was the biggest trade deficit going back to early 2012.
Caterpillar's new CEO, Jim Umpleby, apologized to the heavy-machinery giant’s employees who witnessed agents executing a search warrant at the company’s facilities. "I’m sorry that we had to experience this today,” he said, calling Caterpillar an "honorable company."
Federal officials have executed search warrants at three Caterpillar, Inc. facilities in the Tri-County Area — including the corporate headquarters — Thursday morning. Company officials confirmed the presence in a statement without specifying which agency was performing the search or what the search was in regard to.
Fed Chair Janet Yellen is still at the helm and will be for another year. But two long-standing vacancies are available for the President immediately, and in them lies a key to understanding a fundamental relationship that should guide how we think about the Trump presidency and the very nature of financial and monetary system.
In his Inaugural Address, having nominated the wealthiest cabinet in American history, he proclaimed, “For too long, a small group in our nation's capital has reaped the rewards of government.” Under Trump, an even smaller group will flourish -- in particular, a cadre of former Goldman Sachs executives. To put the matter bluntly, two of them (along with the Federal Reserve) are likely to control our economy and financial system in the years to come.
According to a report from The Hill this morning, President-elect Trump's transition team is already working with career staff at the White House on plans to slash federal spending with significant cuts expected to the budgets of the Department of Commerce, Energy, Transportation, Justice and State, among others, totaling $10.5 trillion over 10 years.
Goldman Sachs is relatively optimistic about growth in 2017, for three reasons: first, despite the lack of spare capacity, US recession risk remains below the historical average; second, financial conditions should remain a growth tailwind - at least in the first half of 2017; and third, we expect a fiscal easing accumulating to 1% of GDP by 2018. However, uncertainty remains and here is what Jan Hatzius and his team believe are the ten most important questions for 2017.
Expect the election result to increase policy uncertainty, warns Goldman Sachs, as a result of an increased pace of legislative action in 2017 without clarity, so far, regarding which issues the administration will prioritize. Over the near-term, much will depend on how financial conditions respond to the policy positions of the new administration. Despite today’s favorable market reaction, investors may take a dimmer view on proposals to raise tariffs or otherwise restrict international trade.