Economic data is of little value in making longer-term forecasts.

It is too early in the health crisis to be able to forecast the nature of economic conditions when this passes. There are forecasts of a V-shaped business cycle where growth surges in either the third quarter or fourth. There are forecasts of a U-shaped cycle and a L-shaped recovery. There is also no way of knowing when any of these recoveries might begin. The nature of any recovery is going to be dependent on two components. Will consumer spending surge when people are back to work and closed sectors begin to re-open? The V-shaped forecasts assume there will be a surge as pent-up demand of delayed spending is released. The second component is business fixed investment. Will companies unleash a surge in buying of new production facilities and re-design supply chains to reduce dependence on foreign made parts and goods? We know consumer spending growth did not recover after the 2008-09 Great Recession as fast as has been the case in past business cycles.

 

PROBANK AUSTIN ADVISOR - MARCH 30, 2020