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Macro Minute
December 6, 2022

Winter Break for Blog

For the month of December, Macro Minute will be on hiatus. We'll resume our normal programming in January 2023.

Recent Posts

Nov. 22, 2022

This year, inflation will probably feature in some of conversations over Thanksgiving dinner. To prepare you for this onslaught, this post will take stock of how inflation has gobbled up part of the holiday budget.

Nov. 15, 2022

How related are wages and prices, and does the current environment mean such a relationship has changed?

Nov. 8, 2022

In recent weeks, government debt and foreign exchange markets in the U.K. were roiled by a remarkable amount of volatility.

Oct. 18, 2022

As central banks around the world tighten their monetary policies, the U.S. dollar has appreciated significantly compared to other currencies.

Oct. 11, 2022

A key concern about the Biden administration's debt forgiveness program is its inflationary impact. This post provides a back-of-the-envelope calculation of this impact, based on a specific view of the federal budget and how it interacts with monetary and fiscal policies.

Oct. 4, 2022

Declining gasoline prices have contributed to an easing of inflation and lower inflation expectations, working in tandem with the FOMC's efforts to bring price levels down. But how hard is monetary policy tapping on the brakes of the economy?

Sept. 27, 2022

For homebuyers who are still in the market despite higher prices and borrowing rates, their options may be limited as homebuilders focus on clearing backlogs rather than starting new construction.

Aug. 23, 2022

Inflation has hit most other advanced economies in addition to the United States. What can we learn from their experiences?

Aug. 16, 2022

Examining how nominal income and spending behaved during the months surrounding past peaks in inflation may yield insights into the current bout of high inflation.

Aug. 9, 2022

The elevated number of job openings in recent months have been a very stark signal of labor market tightness. But some signs may be pointing to that tightness starting to ease.

Aug. 2, 2022

While several indicators have pointed to a recent slowdown in economic activity, one that uses unemployment rates to gauge recession probabilities may offer new insights.

July 12, 2022

While some measures of inflation show modest signs of improvement, trimmed mean inflation tells another story.

July 5, 2022

Recent JOLTS data on job openings, hires and separations may shed some light on establishment size and the challenges of snagging new employees.

June 28, 2022

The impact of the recent rise in prices on households and how people perceive future price increases may vary according to income, according to recent research.

May 31, 2022

For decades, economists have been looking for leading indicators that can signal the future direction of the overall economy. In today's post, we look at a few of these indicators and what they suggest for growth going forward.

May 24, 2022

Since last summer, rising home prices have threatened to push up rent prices, adding pressure to overall inflation. How have actual rents fared and what do the most recent numbers imply for rent inflation going forward?

May 17, 2022

Recent reports revealed strong growth in hiring and wages for April. But is that growth enough to keep up with inflation?

May 10, 2022

The recent fall in real GDP has sparked considerable concern, but an alternative measure provides hope that the economy didn't fare as poorly as the GDP data suggest.

April 12, 2022

A recent analysis shows significantly higher inflation in rural areas versus urban areas, using data from nine broad census divisions. But does this difference in price levels hold true drilling down to the state level?

April 5, 2022

Purchases of durable goods have been moderating after experiencing a surge during the pandemic. But is this due to falling demand or constrained supplies?

March 29, 2022

While the unemployment rate has yet to fall to its pre-pandemic level, another measure of labor market tightness has reached levels not seen since the 1970s — job openings per unemployed person.

March 22, 2022

Crude oil prices spiked following Russia's invasion of Ukraine, adding to the pricing pressures that were already affecting energy markets. Filling any supply gaps won't be easy.

Feb. 22, 2022

Despite improvements in the unemployment rate and labor force participation, one measure indicates continued hiring challenges in the private sector: the hires-per-job opening ratio.

Feb. 15, 2022

While consumers haven't been the best forecasters of the future rate of inflation, their expectations may have additional weight now because more people are paying attention to price levels.

Feb. 8, 2022

There are a lot more people who say they aren't working due to COVID-19, according to a recent survey. However, other data indicates that most of those workers remain in the labor force.

Feb. 1, 2022

The New York Fed recently combined a variety of indicators into a single measure of global supply chain pressure. Plotting this index against the Richmond Fed's "prices paid" measurements from its business activity surveys can provide a window into the effects of supply disruptions on the Fifth Federal Reserve District.

Jan. 11, 2022

While nonfarm payrolls increased only modestly in December, both monthly and high-frequency data on job openings bode well for upcoming employment reports.

Jan. 4, 2022

A model takes a fresh look at the relationship between producer prices and consumer prices and can be used to make a simple forecast of inflation for 2022.

Dec. 28, 2021

The emergence of a new COVID-19 variant poses risks to next year's economic outlook, especially if a spike in cases leads to supply disruptions in China and higher prices for Chinese imports.

Dec. 21, 2021

Despite an impressive drop in the unemployment rate in November 2021, looking at the breakdown of the unemployed shows that the labor market is not back to normal.

Nov. 30, 2021

Americans have spent less and saved more during most of the COVID-19 pandemic. What will happen to these accumulated savings is an open question.

Nov. 16, 2021

Doing a deep dive into inventory-to-sales ratios can yield insights into supply chain issues during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Nov. 9, 2021

In the post-COVID-19 labor market, there is still an inverse relationship between the unemployment rate and the job openings rate, expressed as the Beveridge curve. But it takes a lot more openings to get to the same level of unemployment. This shift suggests a high degree of labor market mismatch.

Oct. 19, 2021

Average hourly earnings continue to grow strongly. With inflation running high, however, real wage growth has been more muted. Inflation has even outpaced wage growth in a few sectors.

Oct. 12, 2021

Household savings have been elevated since the start of the pandemic, especially among high-income households. This is expected to fuel the seasonal burst of demand ahead of the holidays.

Oct. 5, 2021

Recent data from the Institute for Supply Management and other sources offer early indications of whether and how much supply chain disruptions have eased.

Sept. 28, 2021

How consumers respond to the ongoing Delta variant outbreak has been a key question facing the economy. Fortunately, consumer spending is holding up better than sentiment surveys would have suggested.

Sept. 7, 2021

There could be multiple explanations for why more workers are staying on the sidelines compared to the pre-COVID-19 days. One reason could be that some people have reconsidered the costs and benefits of working.

Aug. 31, 2021

The housing market has boomed during the pandemic, but data over the past few months have been more mixed. Is this bumpiness the result of weaker demand or lower supply?

Aug. 24, 2021

The number of people working from home increased substantially in 2020, as many employers changed their work arrangements in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Aug. 17, 2021

Household spending fell sharply, especially on services, during the early days of the pandemic. That story is expected to change significantly as the recovery continues.

Aug. 10, 2021

The two main employment surveys can present differing views of the health of the labor market in any given month, adding to the challenges of determining how far the economy has recovered from last year's severe downturn.

Aug. 3, 2021

Employers are reporting they are unable to find workers. But is every industry experiencing the same difficulties, and are the industries having more trouble raising wages in response?

July 13, 2021

The recent acceleration in the prices people pay for housing might have more lasting implications for the path of core inflation ahead.

July 6, 2021

Policymakers have been using the trimmed mean PCE inflation rate to get a better sense of the overall direction of prices in the long term. But does using this metric risk missing anything that short-term price hikes might be telling us?