The U.S. economy has begun the second half of 2021 in generally good shape, with GDP growth in the just-ended quarter likely having equaled or surpassed the 6.4% gain tallied in the initial period.
The Federal Reserve is getting into position to move the goal posts. True, it doesn’t plan to shift them dramatically, but it does seem likely to do so modestly and earlier than previously thought. Heretofore, it was expected the Fed would eventually reduce its vast bond purchases.
When thinking about our physical health, it’s common for people to take a holistic approach—that is, we think about ways we can practice being healthy overall, like eating a balanced diet and getting an adequate amount of exercise. Keeping our bodies healthy means improving our quality of life.
Inflation is heating up, with the Consumer and Producer Price Indexes surging by 0.6% and 0.8%, respectively, in May. Worse still, prices were up 5.0% and 6.6% in the latest 12 months, the former of which was the biggest uptick since August 2008, when the U.S. economy was in free fall. In all, inflation has been trending higher since January.
Inflation is a hot topic on Wall Street these days, with key economic reports showing notable increases in pricing pressures. Specifically, the price index for gross domestic purchases surged 3.9% in the first quarter, up from 1.7% in the preceding period.
Inflation is becoming a concern for Wall Street, with April data on producer (wholesale) and consumer prices proving unsettling. Specifically, the Producer Price Index (PPI) rose 0.6% last month, or twice the projected increase, and 6.2% in the past year.
Investing your money is easier than ever in this digital age. Gone are the days of having to call or visit a financial professional in person. Now, most investing can be done online—there are even apps to help you. From apps to help you save your spare change to stock trading apps, there are options out there for multiple financial situations.
There’s plenty of good news to go around, with one release after another pointing to increasing levels of business activity. Leading the way as April closed out was The Conference Board’s March report on the Leading Economic Indicators (LEI), which rose 1.3%.
Thinking about where to invest your money can be overwhelming and confusing, especially for those who are unfamiliar with all options for investing. If you’d like to take advantage of the ease of stock trading with the diversification of mutual funds, exchange-traded funds (ETFs) can potentially give you the best of both worlds.
It has been an unprecedented 12 months. True, 2020 started out routinely enough with just an orderly deceleration in business activity during the winter. But a difficult close to the first quarter followed, with COVID-19 spreading across Asia, Europe, and the new world.