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Global, domestic impediments will slow down economy, but no recession yet

Global, domestic impediments will slow down economy, but no recession yet
PR Newswire
LOS ANGELES, June 1, 2022

UCLA Anderson Forecast says war in Ukraine, COVID lockdowns in China, supply chain constraints, inflation will stymie growth



Global, domestic impediments will slow down economy, but no recession yet

PR Newswire

UCLA Anderson Forecast says war in Ukraine, COVID lockdowns in China, supply chain constraints, inflation will stymie growth

LOS ANGELES, June 1, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- In March, the UCLA Anderson Forecast cited the uncertainties facing the U.S. and California economies. Seemingly, just as the economy was returning to normal as the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic began to abate, the Russian invasion of Ukraine destabilized global economic conditions.

UCLA Anderson Forecast says economic slowdowns in California and across the U.S. are expected, but no recession yet

In the UCLA Anderson Forecast's June reports for the nation and the state, the effects of a number of economic impediments — including the Russia-Ukraine war, COVID lockdowns in China, supply chain constraints and inflation — continue to affect the U.S. and California economies. And while there is no recession forecast in the June report, economic slowdowns in California and across the U.S. are expected.

The national forecast

Given growing concern about the possibility of a recession caused by rising interest rates and a slowdown in housing, Professor Edward Leamer, in an article titled "A New Way of Forecasting a Recession: Not Much to Worry About Right Now," examines the evidence through a statistical analysis of past recessions. Leamer's analysis concludes that a recession in the next 12 months is unlikely.

However, according to UCLA Anderson Forecast Senior Economist Leo Feler, author of the June forecast for the nation, there is no doubt that parts of the U.S. economy are abruptly slowing, as waves of economic shocks continue to cause damage. With the war in Ukraine and COVID lockdowns in China both continuing, the global economy continues to experience supply constraints and higher prices for raw materials.

Related to those shocks, what once seemed like transitory inflation has become persistent, and consumers have begun to expect higher rates of inflation for the coming years. In other words, the concern that inflation expectations could become unanchored has begun to materialize, which will make it more challenging for the Fed to rein in inflation. The UCLA Anderson Forecast expects that in order to do so, the Fed will significantly increase interest rates this year, which will slow consumer demand, especially for housing and related consumer durables. Higher rates will also slow business investment.

The slowdown in both consumer spending and business investment should bring demand back in line with supply and help alleviate some of the current supply chain constraints and shortages. Although a recession is not expected in the next two years, the risk has certainly grown. It is possible that continued global economic shocks will hurt the U.S. economic recovery and that the Fed will tighten too quickly, which could lead to a recession. The UCLA Forecast does not expect this to be the case, but a recession has become more possible.

The Forecast team also does not expect the Fed to be able to bring core inflation down to its 2% target until after 2024, even with the tighter monetary policy that is expected for this year and into 2023.

The June Forecast expects U.S. economic growth will likely slow to 2.8% in 2022, followed by 2.0% in 2023 and 1.9% in 2024, below the trend rate of growth in these later years. Just a few months ago, the forecast was for growth of 4.3%, 2.8% and 2.3%, respectively, for the same years. On a quarterly basis, the latest Forecast expects the depth of the economic slowdown and the highest risk of recession to occur in the middle of 2023.

According to Feler's report, the GDP contraction that occurred in the first quarter of 2022 was a "one-off." He expects a rebound in GDP of 3.1% on an annualized basis in the second quarter and 3.6% in the third quarter, as consumers shrug off COVID-19 and shift back to services like airline travel, recreation and dining.

"By the end of 2022 and into 2023, as the impact of the Federal Reserve's interest rate increases begin to bite, we expect growth to slow to below 2%," Feler says. "Only by the end of 2024 do we expect GDP growth to pick back up to trend rates."

With that economic slowdown, the level of GDP is expected to remain below what it would have been had the pandemic never occurred. That is, real GDP is not expected to return to its long-term trend even by the end of 2024. Unemployment will likely rise in 2023 as the Federal Reserve increases interest rates and the economy slows. The forecast for inflation does not see consumer prices easing any time soon and calls for 7.4% year-over-year inflation, as measured by the consumer price index, by the end of 2022, falling to 2.2% by the end of 2023. 

Feler expects the Fed to raise interest rates at each of its meetings for the rest of the year, with the likelihood of 0.5 percentage point increases in June and July, and even the possibility of a 0.75 percentage point increase if inflation does not begin to come down. The forecast expects the federal funds rate to peak between 3.75% and 4.0% in mid-2023.

The California forecast

In California, the pandemic continues to be a major factor influencing the economy, but it is no longer the sole influence. Higher energy prices due to Russia's invasion of Ukraine as well as uncertainty on Wall Street that will impact funding for the state's technology entrepreneurs are headwinds, in addition to continuing pandemic-related supply chain interruptions.

But there are also some positives, including California's record surplus general fund and a significant rainy-day fund to protect against future tax revenue downturns.

Still, according to UCLA Anderson Forecast Director Jerry Nickelsburg, who authored the June California forecast, the headwinds affecting the state's growth are significant. As a result, the forecast has been shifted downward from the previous one. It is not a recession, but it is a shallower growth trend than before.

Nickelsburg's June analysis includes an examination of sectors that are now experiencing constraints but are expected to drive the California economy in the coming years.

The California forecast calls for solid gains in employment. The current data indicate that broad-based hiring in retail trade, health care and social services, technology and construction is likely to mean solid gains in the coming three years. Increases in defense spending and the continued demand for tech will also be factors in the California economy's continued growth.

But there are real risks to the economy in the near term. As a consequence of the expected slowing of growth elsewhere in the U.S., the California forecast is now a bit weaker than it was three months ago. Further risks to the forecast are the continuing pandemic and domestic migration on the downside, as well as increased international immigration and accelerated onshoring of technical manufacturing on the upside.

Technology-laden industries have been driving the California economy since the end of the Great Recession, as the demand for new software and technological solutions to 21st-century business and consumer activity has been evident in both the San Francisco Bay Area and Southern California. Today, this spans aerospace, manufacturing, life sciences, energy, entertainment and computing.

Although tech is not a sector itself, two sectors — professional, technical and scientific services being one, and information the other — are arguably the most tech-intensive sectors. The information sector includes film and television production and broadcasting. By June 2021, employment in these two sectors had recovered in the Bay Area, and in April 2022, the level of payroll employment was 7.2% higher than its previous peak. Also, April employment grew at an annual rate of 7%. Between the last three months and the previous three months, employment grew by an annual rate of 4%.

In addition, the logistics industry has been hiring rapidly since the downturn in March 2020. This has been driven by a shift from services consumption to goods consumption during the worst of the pandemic, an increase in home remodeling and a shift in purchase behavior from brick-and-mortar retail to online retail. The impact can be seen in the sea port and airport data. As California is the port of entry for most of the goods produced in Asia's industrial centers, the state has disproportionately benefited from this increased demand.

The unemployment rate for the third quarter of this year is expected to be 4.3%, and the average rates for 2022, 2023 and 2024 are expected to be 4.5%, 4.1% and 4.5%, respectively. The forecast for 2022, 2023 and 2024 is for total employment growth rates to be 4.3%, 1.5% and 4.7%. Non-farm payroll jobs are expected to grow at rates of 5.1%, 2.3% and 1.2% during the same three years. Real personal income is forecast to decline by 4.5% in 2022 and grow by 2.4% in 2023 as a function of the transfers from the stimulus packages expiring, and it is expected to grow by 2.9% in 2024.

In spite of the slowing economy, the continued demand for limited housing stock, coupled with low interest rates, leads to a forecast of a relatively rapid return of homebuilding. The economists' expectation is for 124,000 net new units to be permitted in 2022, growing to 143,000 by 2024. That level of homebuilding means that the prospect of the private sector building out of the housing affordability problem over the next three years is nil.

Human capital in the U.S. and Los Angeles

In a companion essay, UCLA Anderson Forecast economist William Yu updates the Forecast's City Human Capital Index (CHCI).

In 2012, the UCLA Anderson Forecast developed the CHCI to calculate the weighted average of educational attainment of adult residents by various geographic domains, such as state, metro (MSA), county and ZIP code. The goal is to provide a simple barometer to measure and compare human capital across regions in the U.S. over time. A simple interpretation of the index is that — by and large — one-tenth of its value is equal to the average schooling years of local residents.

According to the report, the top three metros with the highest CHCI in 2020 were Washington, D.C.; Boston; and San Francisco, with New York City in the middle and Los Angeles, San Antonio, Las Vegas and Riverside, California, at the bottom.

According to Yu, the good news is that there was an across-the-board increase in the CHCI from 2013 to 2020 due to such reasons as increased investment in education, higher graduation rates and higher human capital migration. Los Angeles County, although still falling below the national average in adult educational attainment, is now outpacing the U.S. in the growth in millennials' educational attainment.

June 2022 Forecast conference

2022 and Beyond: An Economy in the Choppy Waters of Supply Chains and Inflation

In addition to presentations of the U.S. and California forecasts, the June 2022 Forecast conference will feature a keynote address by John Burns, CEO of John Burns Real Estate Consulting, and a panel discussion regarding residential real estate. The panel participants are:

  • David Shulman, Senior Economist, UCLA Anderson Forecast
  • Jan K. Brueckner, Distinguished Professor, Economics, School of Social Sciences, University of California, Irvine
  • Martha Mosier, President, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices California Properties
  • Anthony Valeri, Executive Vice President, Director of Investment Management, California Bank & Trust
About UCLA Anderson Forecast

UCLA Anderson Forecast is one of the most widely watched and often-cited economic outlooks for California and the nation and was unique in predicting both the seriousness of the early-1990s downturn in California and the strength of the state's rebound since 1993. The Forecast was credited as the first major U.S. economic forecasting group to call the recession of 2001 and, in March 2020, it was the first to declare that the recession caused by the COVID-19 pandemic had already begun.

About UCLA Anderson School of Management

UCLA Anderson School of Management is among the leading business schools in the world, with faculty members globally renowned for their teaching excellence and research in advancing management thinking. Located in Los Angeles, gateway to the growing economies of Latin America and Asia and a city that personifies innovation in a diverse range of endeavors, UCLA Anderson's MBA, Fully Employed MBA, Executive MBA, UCLA-NUS Executive MBA, Master of Financial Engineering, Master of Science in Business Analytics, doctoral and executive education programs embody the school's Think in the Next ethos. Annually, some 1,800 students are trained to be global leaders seeking the business models and community solutions of tomorrow.

Media Contact
Rebecca Trounson
(310) 825-1348

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SOURCE UCLA Anderson Forecast

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Housing Affordability Index Drops To Lowest Rate Since 1989, Still Way Too High

Housing Affordability Index Drops To Lowest Rate Since 1989, Still Way Too High

Authored by Mike Shedlock via,

The National…



Housing Affordability Index Drops To Lowest Rate Since 1989, Still Way Too High

Authored by Mike Shedlock via,

The National Association of Realtors says "affordability" dropped to 98.5 in June, the lowest since 1989.

Housing Affordability Index and mortgage rates via St. Louis Fed.

Affordability in June Was the Worst Since 1989

The Wall Street Journal reports Affordability in June Was the Worst Since 1989

It was more expensive to buy a U.S. home in June than it has been for any month in more than three decades, as record-high home prices collided with a surge in mortgage rates.

The National Association of Realtors’ housing-affordability index, which factors in family incomes, mortgage rates and the sales price for existing single-family homes, fell to 98.5 in June, the association said Friday. That marked the lowest level since June 1989, when the index stood at 98.3.

Housing Affordability Index

The NAR's Housing Affordability Index is based on median income data current  through 2017, projected forward. 

Only 13 months of data is available on Fred, the St. Louis Fed repository.

Affordability is based on whether the median family earns enough income to qualify for a 30-year fixed mortgage loan on the median single-family home without spending more than 25% of the income on payment for principal and interest.

An index value of 100 means that a family with the median income has exactly enough income to qualify for a mortgage on a median-priced home. An index above 100 means a median family has more than enough income to qualify for a mortgage loan on a median-priced home, assuming a 20 percent down payment. 

Inquiring minds may wish to look at the NAR's Housing Affordability Index Calculations.

Curiously, the NAR concludes the median household can nearly always afford the median home price.

Do you believe that? More importantly, even if accurate, so what? 

The median person who can afford a home and wants a home probably already has a home. 

First Time Buyer Index

In terms of new and existing home sales, what matters is what a buyer who does not have a home, but wants a home, is willing to pay and can pay. 

The First-Time Buyer Index for 2022 Q2 fell to 68 assuming a starter home price of $351,500. 

Can 68 percent of would-be buyers afford (and find) a $351,500 home in a neighborhood in which they want to live? 

68 percent is a much more reasonable number than the overall 98.5 percent calculation, but that still strikes me as too high. 

Case-Shiller National Home Price Index

I have not updated my full set of Case-Shiller home price charts for a while but that chart is current (May data). 

Case-Shiller lags by a few months so it's even worse than shown. 

The pre-pandemic index was 212 and it's now 306. That's a 44 percent jump with real median wages declining, property taxes soaring, food soaring, and energy soaring.

Yet, the NAR says that median overall affordability has declined only to the 98.5 percent level. Yeah, right.

Meanwhile, rent and food keep rising and the price of rent will be sticky. Gasoline is more dependent on recession and global supply chains.

Food Prices Rise Most Since February 1979

For more on the price of food, please see Food at Home is Up 13.1 Percent From a Year Ago, Most Since February 1979

For more on rent, please note Tennant's Unions Demand Biden Declare a National Emergency to Stop Rent Gouging

For more on producer prices please see Producer Prices Decline For the First Time Since the Pandemic Due to Energy

Spotlight on Fed Silliness

The Fed has blown three consecutive bubbles trying to produce two percent consumer inflation while openly promoting raging bubbles in assets especially housing.

*  *  *

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Tyler Durden Sun, 08/14/2022 - 12:30

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Summer Teen Employment

Here is a look at the change in teen employment over time.The graph below shows the employment-population ratio for teens (6 to 19 years old) since 1948.The graph is Not Seasonally Adjusted (NSA), to show the seasonal hiring of teenagers during the sum…



Here is a look at the change in teen employment over time.

The graph below shows the employment-population ratio for teens (6 to 19 years old) since 1948.

The graph is Not Seasonally Adjusted (NSA), to show the seasonal hiring of teenagers during the summer.

A few observations:
1) Although teen employment has recovered some since the great recession, overall teen employment had been trending down. This is probably because more people are staying in school (a long term positive for the economy).

2) Teen employment was significantly impacted in 2020 by the pandemic.

Click on graph for larger image.

3) A smaller percentage of teenagers are obtaining summer employment. The seasonal spikes are smaller than in previous decades. 

The teen employment-population ratio was 38.4% in July 2022, down from 38.9% in July 2021. The teen participation rate was 43.6% in July 2022, down from 43.8% the previous July. 

So, a smaller percentage of teenagers are joining the labor force during the summer as compared to previous years. This could be because of fewer employment opportunities, or because teenagers are pursuing other activities during the summer.

3) The decline in teenager participation is one of the reasons the overall participation rate has declined (of course, the retiring baby boomers is the main reason the overall participation rate has declined over the last 20+ years).

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Braxia and KetaMD, CEOs McIntyre and Gumpel Speak on Acquisition

Last week, the Canadian company Braxia Scientific acquired 100% of the issued and outstanding stock of KetaMD, Inc. This is an exciting acquisition, and…



Last week, the Canadian company Braxia Scientific acquired 100% of the issued and outstanding stock of KetaMD, Inc. This is an exciting acquisition, and in today’s interview, The Dales Report’s Nicole Hodges talks with CEOs Dr. Roger McIntyre and Warren Gumpel of Braxia Scientific and KetaMD respectively.

For some background information, KetaMD is a U.S. based, privately-held, innovative telemedicine company, with a mission to address mental health challenges via access to technology-facilitated ketamine-based treatments. Braxia Scientific is Canada’s first clinic specializing in ketamine treatments for mood disorders. They recorded revenue of $1.49m for 2022 fiscal year, ended March 31. On a year-over-year basis, revenue increased 47.5%.

Here’s some highlights from the interview.

KetaMD gives Braxia a presence in the US

Dr. McIntyre says that KetaMD gives Braxia what they’ve had as their vision from the beginning: a US presence. KetaMD is a living program. It’s already running, has infrastructure, and patients. McIntyre believes that a program like KetaMD is something Braxia’s needed to scale and obtain commercial success.

With telemedicine, Braxia has a potential to serve a gap in access. The zeitgeist of “patient going to medicine” has flipped, McIntyre says. “Now it’s medicine goes to the patient, and that is long overdue.”

COVID speeding a trend that was already happening

In 2020, 80% of physicians indicated they had virtual visits. That’s a number up from 22% the year before. But this is something that many doctors, McIntyre included, believe always should have happened. The pandemic only was the catalyst for innovation and making the option viable.

While some treatments will always need a clinic or a hospital, McIntyre believes some treatments can be done safely at home. And they are, for many chronic diseases. He feels implementing ketamine and psychedelics would be among these treatments where service could be expanded into the home. It would require careful SOPs in place, best practices, and surveillance. But he believes Braxia Scientific could deliver this with KetaMD.

Gumpel to stay as CEO of KetaMD

Gumpel says that KetaMD benefits in this acquisition from being part of the world’s most prominent researchers in depression, psychedelics, and ketamine. In the acquisition, he’ll stay on as CEO. He admits that Dr. McIntyre has been a huge part of collecting the data on the safety of ketamine treatment, and has a strong motivation to “see this thing through until most of society can access that – or at least the people that need it and want it.”

Gumpel admits he has a personal connection to ketamine treatment. As a person who has experienced bouts of depression for years, it saved his life, he says. He is grateful he was living within walking distance of ketamine treatment in Manhattan. It made him extremely aware of the accessibility gap, which in part inspired KetaMD.

Be sure to tune in for the full interview regarding Braxia and KetaMD, right here on The Dales Report!

The post Braxia and KetaMD, CEOs McIntyre and Gumpel Speak on Acquisition appeared first on The Dales Report.

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