The Macro Report
Timely macroeconomic insights on the global economy, fixed-income markets, currencies, and policies.
August 17, 2021
U.S. labor market — 55 is the new 65
Following broad-based recovery in the labor market when the economy initially reopened in 2020, the labor force participation rate has stagnated and started to diverge.
Pandemic takes toll on emerging market finances
New mobility restrictions will be a drag on emerging economies, but we expect the impact will be less severe than during the first wave of the pandemic.
U.K. rebounds as consumers splurge, factories rev up
The U.K. economy is recovering as retail sales, manufacturing, and services show strong growth, driven by the easing of lockdown rules.
Toys, cars, and the U.S. recovery
We believe growth in the United States remains strong, but expectations need to be revised lower.
Oil makes a comeback as demand rises
Oil demand is likely to rise amid a stronger outlook for the United States, China, and Europe.
Fiscal impetus and the U.S. labor market
We examine the interplay between President Biden's multi-trillion-dollar stimulus plans, the labor market, and corporate profits.
China focuses on growth today and on tech for the future
China's ambitious five-year plan calls for self-sufficiency in technology and quality domestic growth.
Economic recovery, European-style
We believe Europe's economic activity can remain in expansion and perhaps even surprise on the upside in the second quarter.
From V-shaped recovery to bond vigilantes
The Federal Reserve remains dovish on monetary policy as bond market vigilantes push yields higher.
Green shoots in Japan's economy
Japan's economy, the world's third largest, will likely accelerate in mid-2021 as vaccine rollouts gather steam.
U.S. consumers flush with cash could drive temporary inflation
An easing pandemic and rising consumption will buoy U.S. growth, and potentially inflation.
Rising yields and mixed recoveries in emerging markets
The broad outlook for emerging markets has improved as vaccinations gather pace, but higher global interest rates will create headwinds.
Oil prices rally as supply dwindles
OPEC+ will be the key determinant for near-term oil prices as the outlook for global demand improves.
Global economic recovery hinges on vaccine success
Vaccine supply and efficacy rates will be important factors for a return to pre-pandemic global activity.
Is inflation poised to return?
We believe that pandemic-related bottlenecks have temporarily lifted U.S. inflation. Still, the underlying inflation trend is weak.
China's economy pulls ahead
China’s economy is rebounding and the virus spread remains mostly under control.
U.K. starts new chapter after EU split
It is strategic for the U.K. to have a trade deal with the EU given the short- and long-term negative effects of Brexit.
Vaccine-led recovery could boost emerging markets
The pace of economic recovery will differ among emerging markets, depending on COVID-19 vaccines and virus trends
Vaccine not in time for jobs recovery
The U.S. labor market continues to lose steam as fewer Americans were able to find work amid surging Covid-19 cases.
Oil markets pin hope on vaccine and OPEC+
Oil prices are likely to trend slightly higher as OPEC+ mulls maintaining lower output in 2021 and demand recovers in key markets such as China.
Calls for new stimulus as recovery fizzles
Governments are trying to calibrate their policies to support growth as “fiscal cliffs” loom amid a resurgence in the virus.
U.S. politics amid virus surge
U.S. election politics are playing out against a backdrop of an easing recovery, rising COVID-19 cases, and a potential new vaccine.
China leads, other emerging markets lag
China is leading the economic recovery among emerging-market countries, buoyed by stimulus and stringent COVID-19 measures.
Pandemic persists in policy patchwork
Fiscal and monetary policies will be central to the economic recovery between now and the availability of a COVID-19 vaccine.
U.S. economy remains a centerpiece in 2020 vote
Fiscal policy will be a key focus for investors after the November election.
The global economy and the race for a vaccine
The development of a vaccine will play a role in shaping the global economic comeback in 2021.
Keeping Japan's economy afloat after Abe
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's resignation raises questions about the future of Abenomics and reform in Japan.
The Fed’s flexible new policy
The Fed announced a shift in its approach to monetary policy and the new strategy can be viewed as a flexible form of average inflation targeting.
V-shaped recovery proving elusive
The U.S. and global economic recoveries are unlikely to be “V-shaped” as businesses and consumers remain wary of returning to pre-pandemic behavior.
Vaccine is a wild card for the economy
A vaccine for the coronavirus will be supportive of risky assets even if the economic benefits take longer to materialize.
Risk sentiment swings with Fed tapering
Without a proactive Fed, the rally in risk assets would be in trouble.
U.S.–China war of words playbook
The politics of the U.S.–China relationship have clearly become more complicated recently. The war of words over China’s handling of the coronavirus outbreak and the proposed new Hong Kong security law has the potential to create headwinds for the global economy and financial markets.
U.S. economic fog lifts slightly
It is encouraging that some stabilization has started in the United States and the economic data fog is lifting just a little; but we forecast a low probability of a "V-shaped" recovery.
Coronavirus tests limits of U.S. stimulus plans
The pandemic is testing the policy responses from the Federal Reserve and Congress to boost the U.S. economy and calm financial markets.
Stumbling toward a fiscal equilibrium in the eurozone
The economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic in Europe will be severe amid efforts by policymakers, including the ECB, to cushion the blow.
Bracing for a slow U.S. recovery
U.S. economic recovery will likely be slow and halting as coronavirus health risks cast a shadow on demand.
Oil’s wild ride and what lies ahead
Demand for oil has collapsed as the coronavirus pandemic devastates the global economy and curbs much of the need for fuel from companies and consumers.
Navigating bond yields
The trajectory of bonds yields will depend on the Federal Reserve's policies and fiscal stimulus amid a sharp global economic downturn.
Social distancing generates recession
A recession is looming in the U.S. as COVID-19 and social distancing take a toll on economic activity.
Manager insights: Bulls, bears, and bond markets
With the extreme swings in the market over the past few weeks, several of Putnam’s senior fixed-income managers shared their insights on the bond markets
Slowing the spread of Covid-19 entails economic disruption
The global economic outlook has deteriorated because of the coronavirus pandemic and rising supply and demand disruptions.
The Fed reacts to coronavirus economic risks
The Fed made a proactive move to reduce the federal funds rate by 50 basis points.
The impact of coronavirus on markets
The spread of coronavirus infections is having an impact on China’s GDP and on financial market sentiment worldwide.
Is another round of Fed rate cuts looming?
The Federal Reserve may lower its benchmark interest rate by 50 basis points in 2020 if sustained financial market stress affects economic activity.
China's economy braces for fallout from coronavirus
There will be some temporary disruption to economic activity in China and elsewhere from the coronavirus outbreak.
Bond yields in early 2020 likely to stay range bound
Bond yields will likely stay range bound in early 2020 as the economy shifts to a lower gear and central banks shift to neutral.
Will the improving housing market further divide the Fed?
The Fed remains divided on the trajectory of interest rates; a pick up in U.S. housing activity may increase this division.
An inverted yield curve: Recession or stagnation?
The Treasury yield curve briefly inverted in August, rattling markets with the possibility of a recession.
July rate cut: “Insurance” policy or recession guard?
The Fed cut interest rates to protect growth from downside risks and described the move as a mid-cycle adjustment to policy, or a so-called “insurance” cut.
Trade war fallout can hurt risky assets
The simmering trade war between the United States and China is expected to continue, and could put the economy at risk.
Trade tensions could reduce global GDP
There is a significant likelihood that U.S.-China trade tensions will remain high. Effects on global GDP effects are uncertain, but could exceed 1%.
Assembling the global growth mosaic
Putnam's macroeconomic research identifies factors that point to continued weakness in the long-term growth potential of several major developed countries.
Innovation is a major driver of growth
Our analysis of TFP — Total Factor Productivity — gives us confidence that innovation can sustain long-term economic growth at pre-2008 levels.
Why energy prices may stay weak
While energy consumption had been relatively stable in the developed world, supply has continued to expand.
The coiled-spring economy
Despite ups and downs in quarterly GDP, we see trends that herald the economy's return to the “old normal,” pre-financial crisis pace of growth.
The U.S. takes the policy road less traveled
The difference between U.S. and European economic growth trajectories may come down to policy paths taken or not taken.
Fed weighs addition to policy toolbox
The Fed may have a desire to switch to a different monetary-policy regime, one that would involve using a permanent balance sheet.
In rising economy, wages are a wild card
By the end of the first quarter, U.S. economic data began to improve somewhat from what had been winter-related economic ...
Is the Fed fighting the last war?
In recent posts, we have approached the problem of the outlook for interest rates by outlining the questions that surround ...
How yields can change in a "normalizing" economy
As the Federal Reserve plots its actions and communications strategy for the gradual normalization of monetary policy, fixed-income investors face ...
Warming economy may leave bond index cold
It appears likely that the U.S. economy will continue to improve, keeping interest rates elevated and volatile. The U.S. recovery, despite ...
New home sales shine in U.S. recovery
Based on its internal dynamics, the U.S. economy continues to be one of the most attractive for investors. One of ...
Putnam Global GDP Nowcast
Putnam Global Risk Appetite Index
ABOUT THE MACRO REPORT
The Macro Report is written by members of Putnam’s Fixed Income team. With backgrounds in applied economics, currency and interest-rate analysis, and sovereign and local bond market dynamics, this group conducts macroeconomic research in support of Putnam’s global fixed-income strategies.
Michael Atkin, Head of Macro & Sovereign Credit
Investing since 1988
Sovereign debt, global growth analysis
Albert Chan, CFA, Head of Portfolio Construction
Interest-rate derivatives, government debt, risk analysis
Onsel Emre, PhD, Analyst
Inflation, risk analysis, global growth dynamics
Sterling Horne, Analyst
Politics and economics
Irina Solyanik, CFA, Analyst
Quantitive analysis, growth forecasting
Izzet Yildiz, PhD, Analyst
Labor market analysis, global growth dynamics