The Fed Is Set to Trigger a Recession in December
The Fed Is Set to Trigger a Recession in December by Michael Carr – Banyan Hill
The Federal Reserve’s job is easy to understand in some ways.
It cuts interest rates when the economy slows. Making money cheaper should lead to economic growth.
Then, when the Fed feels the economy is growing too fast, it raises rates. It keeps raising rates until it starts the next recession. And then the Fed starts over again.
The details are a little more complex than that. But this is what the Fed does.
In its defense, the Fed tries to stop raising rates before it starts a recession. But that’s hard to do, and it usually isn’t successful.
This pattern explains why investors watch interest rates so closely. And history tells us rate watchers are about to get big news. The Fed is weeks away from triggering the next recession.
The Fed Funds Forecast
Market watchers have a variety of techniques to forecast recessions. The most popular is to watch for an inverted yield curve. The chart below shows normal and inverted yield curves.
(Source: U.S. Treasury)
The yield curve shows the interest rate at different times. For example, right now the yield curve tells us a short-term interest rate known as the fed funds rate is about 1.15%, while the interest rate on 10-year Treasury’s about 2.3%.
This is normal, with long-term rates higher than short-term rates. But before a recession, we usually see short-term rates move above long-term rates. That’s called an inverted yield curve because rates are upside down.
This indicator predicted seven of the nine recessions since 1955, a 78% success rate. There were two false positives, a time when the yield curve inverted and no recession followed.
The inverted yield curve is a pretty good indicator. But economists at Wells Fargo developed a better indicator. Their tool identified all nine recessions but gave a total of 13 signals.