Europe and Asia Contend with the Surge

The assertion of a couple of weeks ago was that the U.S. was doing a miserable job of dealing with the pandemic as compared to other nations. The charts and graphs seemed to tell the story as everybody else was seeing the number of cases diminish, the number of hospitalizations decline and most importantly the number of fatalities were falling.The ...
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Busy Week Ahead for Global Data

There will be quite a lot of examination this week, when it comes to new information regarding the state of the global economy. At this point, the information looks pretty decent and suggests there has been recovery in several sectors of the economy. Two questions, however, will hang over these assessments: Did they meet expectations...
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What is Really Shutting Down the Economy Globally?

It would seem this is a pretty easy question to answer. After all, this has not been referred to as a lock-down recession for no reason. The governments of the world elected to shut down business operations as a means by which to reduce human contact with the hopes that such isolation and quarantine would limit the spread of the COVID 19 virus.The ...
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Sharp Improvement Seen in Credit Managers' Index

Data collected by the National Association for Credit Management in its Credit Managers' Index has proven to be very prescient. There are a couple of reasons for this. Generally speaking, credit managers are future thinkers. The surveyed nation's credit managers are more interested in the state of those accessing credit when they are due to payIf t...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for June 26, 2020

By Chris Kuehl, Ph.D., NACM Economist—Short Items of Interest—US Economy—Nice Jump in Consumer Activity There was a nifty gain in personal consumption in May—a gain of 8.2%. That has many feeling a lot better about the possibility of a solid recovery by the end of the summer, and maybe even before. The rebound in the economy has always been totally...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for June 24, 2020

By Chris Kuehl, Ph.D., NACM Economist—Short Items of Interest—US Economy—Home Sales Drop As expected, the sales of existing homes dropped and there has been a significant decline in sales since the record set at the start of the year. Back then, all the factors that tend to drive the housing market were in place. There were low mortgage rates and t...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for June 22, 2020

By Chris Kuehl, Ph.D., NACM Economist—Short Items of Interest—US Economy—Commodity Prices Surge In just the last few days, there has been a rapid rebound in the price of most of the industrial commodities and in oil. The price of copper has been surging and there has been upward movement in tin, steel and aluminum as well. Oil is now in the 40s and...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for June 19, 2020

By Chris Kuehl, Ph.D., NACM Economist—Short Items of Interest—US Economy—Pandemic Battles As the lockdown slowly recedes, there has been a new phase of viral response. It promises to be even more contentious and controversial than what has gone before. The aim is now to open the economy, but with restrictions that supposedly slow the outbreak. The ...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for June 17, 2020

By Chris Kuehl, Ph.D., NACM Economist—Short Items of Interest—US Economy—Retail Numbers Boost Confidence As the world started to open up for business, there was one burning question that hovered over everything. Would the consumer come back? This was especially important to the U.S. as the consumer accounts for between 70% and 80% of the economy. T...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for June 15, 2020

By Chris Kuehl, Ph.D., NACM Economist—Short Items of Interest—US Economy—Benefits or Bonuses? The shutdown recession plunged millions of people out of work with no warning whatsoever and created an immediate crisis. During a "normal" recession, people can see something coming and, to some degree, they can prepare for it. There was no time to prepar...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for June 12, 2020

By Chris Kuehl, Ph.D., NACM Economist—Short Items of Interest—US Economy—Battle of the Forecasts As if there was a need to add more to an already chaotic situation, the election year rhetoric is now heating up. The assertions from the Trump team have been that forecasts are too gloomy. There is an assertion that all will be well in just a couple of...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for June 10, 2020

By Chris Kuehl, Ph.D., NACM Economist—Short Items of Interest—US Economy—What Next for the Fed? The next set of discussions for the Fed will revolve around what they do once the pandemic is considered somewhat under control. This would mean an economy that would be focused on rebuilding from the lockdown; not an economy that is adjusting to being i...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for June 8, 2020

By Chris Kuehl, Ph.D., NACM Economist—Short Items of Interest—US Economy—Some Evidence of Consumer Rebound There will be a major report from the University of Michigan consumer confidence survey later this week, but there have been some intermediate releases that show some promise. The one conducted by the New York Fed shows that consumers are slig...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for June 3, 2020

By Chris Kuehl, Ph.D., NACM Economist—Short Items of Interest—US Economy—Dealing with Unemployment There has long been a significant difference between how the U.S. handles unemployment and how many of the European nations handle it. In past years, the differences were somewhat minor as both systems cost a considerable amount of government money an...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for June 1, 2020

By Chris Kuehl, Ph.D., NACM Economist—Short Items of Interest—US Economy—Another Blow to Retail The promise was a tentative one to begin with. There was supposed to be a May rebound from the lockdown recession as communities all over the country started to re-open their businesses. This process has been halting and confusing enough without the adde...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for May 29, 2020

By Chris Kuehl, Ph.D., NACM Economist—Short Items of Interest—US Economy—Herd Immunity As the limitations of the mass quarantine become more and more obvious, there has been a great deal of discussion around the concept of herd immunity. Simply stated, this is when a significant percentage of a population has contracted an infectious disease and ha...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for May 27, 2020

By Chris Kuehl, Ph.D., NACM Economist—Short Items of Interest—US Economy—Will 'Work at Home' Extend? There has been intense speculation regarding which changes in the way the economy operates will be permanent once the lockdown starts to end. Will there be attempts to preserve all this social isolation? Will there be new protocols as there were aft...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for May 22, 2020

By Chris Kuehl, Ph.D., NACM Economist—Short Items of Interest—US Economy—Business Faces New Cost Crisis In many respects, the challenge for the business community is worse now than at the height of the COVID-19 crisis. When all the business community was locked down, the only good news was that companies were not having to spend money during a time...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for May 20, 2020

By Chris Kuehl, Ph.D., NACM Economist—Short Items of Interest—US Economy—Understanding Job Data There is an assumption that calculating unemployment is a pretty simple task. Either a person has been fired or they haven't. It is assumed that everybody who is laid off will file a claim for unemployment and every claim is an accurate assessment of the...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for May 18, 2020

By Chris Kuehl, Ph.D., NACM Economist—Short Items of Interest—US Economy—Consumer Holds Key to Recovery Speed This is not a shocking conclusion by any stretch. From the start of the lockdown recession, it has been apparent that consumers have held the future of the economy in their hands as they always have. The remarks by Fed Chair Jerome Powell r...
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