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Behind the Numbers

Catalyst Corporate’s weekly economic commentary is produced by expert advisors, consultants and investment representatives from Catalyst Strategic Solutions. This publication provides a recap of economic events for the prior week, as well as insights regarding the impact economic developments may have on credit unions.


Behind the Numbers – January 11, 2019

New Meanings Mantra for Fed – The financial markets finally got the Fed’s message from December – the Fed really was trying to sound more dovish than what the market interpreted. The minutes from the December FOMC meeting released this week gave us new meanings for the words used by the...


Behind the Numbers – January 4, 2019

Jobs, Just in Time – It was time for some good economic news, and the monthly job report did not disappoint. The U.S. added 312,000 jobs in December, the largest monthly gain in 10 months. The two-month revision added an additional 58,000 jobs for a total gain of 2.64 million jobs in 2018....


Behind the Numbers – December 21, 2018

A Dove Disguised as a Hawk? – What initially was labeled a "dovish hike," quickly became viewed as extremely hawkish by the financial markets. The Federal Open Market Committee voted unanimously to increase the fed funds rate 25 basis points, making this the fourth move in 2018 and the ninth rate move in three years. The Committee reduced the...


Behind the Numbers – December 14, 2018

Have Prices Peaked? – Inflation appears to be receding after a mid-year peak. The year-over-year rates for both wholesale and consumer prices fell to the lowest levels in more than nine months. Wholesale prices rose 2.5 percent from November 2017, while consumer prices were up 2.2 percent in the same period. The recent plunge in global oil costs is...


Behind the Numbers – December 7, 2018

No Reason to Run for CoverThe sky is falling! Or, in our case, stock prices and bond yields are falling. But the message is the same – this week’s dramatic action in the financial markets may be another Chicken Little situation. Stock investors continue to...


Behind the Numbers – November 30, 2018

He Said, They Said – How many ways can you analyze a speech? Too many, when it comes to the Fed. Analysts, economists and market pundits had a field day on Wednesday trying to interpret the real meaning behind...


Behind the Numbers – November 16, 2018

The Second Look – This week's inflation report was a welcome relief after last week's news about higher-than-expected wholesale prices. The consumer price index rose 0.3 percent in October, and core prices were up 0.2 percent, both spot on expectations. While the CPI numbers were...


Behind the Numbers – November 9, 2018

Inflation Bouncing Around – One month lower than expected, the next month higher than expected. The end result may be nothing to worry about. Producer prices jumped in October by 0.6 percent after a small 0.2 percent rise the previous month. The increase was the largest... 


Behind the Numbers – November 2, 2018

Good News at Last – One word for today's job report – WOW. The country added 250,000 jobs in October, average earnings rose 3.1 percent from a year ago (the biggest jump since April 2009), the labor force participation rate increased two-tenths to 62.9 percent and all sectors added workers...


Behind the Numbers – October 26, 2018

Modest to Moderate Sums it Up – There was a lot of discussion this week about the state of the U.S. economy. The stock market had one of its worst weeks in months, if not years, on fears of the economy falling apart in 2019. The unknown impact of the trade tariffs, higher interest rates and...


Behind the Numbers – October 19, 2018

More Autos, Less Eating Out – What a fickle group of consumers we are. After months of eating out and not buying cars, the American consumer did an about face in September. Retail sales rose a mere 0.1 percent, mostly due to a sharp 1.8 percent decline in spending at food-services and drinking...


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