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Key Perspectives: Economic Outlook February 2017

Global economies improved over the course of 2016. The potential for change in Washington has made investors far more optimistic about the future, but further improvement may be challenging. Repeatedly over the course of this cycle, optimism about improvement has fallen victim to the continuing challenges of sluggish growth both in the United States and overseas. The only 1.9% growth recorded in the 4th quarter, and the 1.6% growth for 2016 as a whole, again show how difficult it is to keep the economy growing faster than 2% for any length of time.

Feb 2017

Low Unemployment Could Stymie President Trump’s Stimulus Plan

The market reactions after Donald Trump’s election suggest that investors believe his policies will produce significantly faster economic growth. But can major new infrastructure spending, lower tax rates, and regulatory overhaul generate strong growth? Probably not at this stage of the economic cycle. While anticipated policy changes may provide some improvement, tightness in the labor markets will likely restrain any strong surge of growth.

Jan 2017

Keeping You Informed: Municipal Commentary

The traditionally placid municipal market traded with wild swings in the fourth quarter after three quarters of positive returns. The surprise presidential election outcome triggered a ferocious sell-off in tax exempt paper as a response to the uncertainty surrounding President-elect Trump’s plans for infrastructure spending and taxes. Yields spiked higher for ten consecutive trading days as the market tried to absorb potential outcomes from a Republican controlled White House and Congress. By year-end, higher rates following the election ticked yields up by more than 70 basis points and consumed most of the gains earned from the previous three quarters.

Jan 2017
Blue Bridge Path

Key Private Bank's 2017 Market Outlook

The 2017 Market Outlook highlights our Strategy Team’s latest views on the trends likely to influence the financial markets this year as well as a look back at 2016. Read on for our latest insights on the economy, equity and fixed income markets, as well as some reflections on last year’s forecasts and how they actually played out.

Jan 2017
winding road

Infrastructure Spending Will Not Be a Magic Cure for Slow Economic Growth

One of the few areas where Democrats and Republicans agreed during the campaign was on the need for more infrastructure investment. In doing so, politicians finally endorsed what many economists have recommended for some time – using increased government spending (i.e., fiscal stimulus) to reinforce the Federal Reserve’s use of monetary policy in the fight against sluggish economic growth.

Nov 2016
Two businessmen working in the lobby of a modern office building

Why Diversification Matters

As inflation drives the cost of living higher over the next 20 to 30 years, investors may want to consider some “risky” investments as part of a diversified portfolio to achieve faster portfolio appreciation.

Nov 2016

The Entitlement Time Bomb Politicians Refuse to Discuss

In a presidential campaign full of controversial headlines, one looming policy issue with major consequences has been largely ignored. Our country is simply not prepared to meet the promises made to the baby boom generation for retirement income and medical care.

Nov 2016

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