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Economic Commentary

We break down timely topics, centered on the major economic events around the world and their impacts to financial markets, in order to help you simplify client conversations around important investing decisions.

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Economic Commentary

Nationwide Market Insights Podcast: Job gains provide more evidence that we’re not in a recession now

This month's employment report provided some very strong numbers, which casts more doubt on recessionary concerns today. But how long can this continue? Could the slowing economy have an impact on future job gains? How could a strong job market accelerate the Fed's plans to tighten monetary policy? Nationwide's Chief Economist David Berson and Senior Economist Ben Ayers take a closer look at the tight labor market and how it reflects on the overall health of the economy. 

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Economic Commentary

Booming jobs report caps a positive week of economic data

Last week’s economic data were mostly positive. Jobs grew by far more than expected for July — finally pushing payrolls past the pre-Covid peak — and the unemployment rate fell to 3.5 percent, matching the pre-Covid trough. Additionally, the ISM surveys signaled growth in manufacturing and services (with growth in services surprisingly accelerating) and provided evidence of both healing supply chains and slowing input price growth. In total, the data show little evidence that the economy is in recession today and increase the odds of the Fed moving forward with plans to institute another large interest rate hike next month. 

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Economic Commentary

A second consecutive drop in real GDP — recession or not?

The contraction in real GDP in the second quarter was an ominous follow-up to a somewhat larger decline in the first quarter. But while those GDP downturns fit the rule of thumb for defining a recession, the underlying data do not. Still, recession risks continue to rise as core growth slows and the Fed continues to tighten monetary policy. Other important economic news included the Fed raising the fed funds rate another 75 basis points as it aims to regain price stability along with new and pending existing home sales falling to their lowest levels since April 2020. 

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Economic Commentary

Nationwide Market Insights Podcast: FOMC moves aggressively (again), hoping to slow inflation. Will it work?

In the July FOMC meeting, the Fed announced an increase of interest rates by three quarters of a percent, the second time in as many months. How much higher could the Fed raise rates? How could this help to slow down inflation? How could the markets react to this increase? And could a recession be on the horizon? Nationwide's Deputy Chief Economist Bryan Jordan and Senior Economist Ben Ayers provide their perspectives on the Fed's announcement and share their outlook on future rate increases 

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Economic Commentary

Existing home sales have fallen significantly this year

Housing data showed a continued cooling in activity for June, slowing to about the levels seen during the recovery from the Covid lockdowns. While the declines were larger than expected, they followed from falling demand in the face of sharply higher mortgage rates and house prices. In other economic news, the index of leading economic indicators declined again, but does not yet signal that a recession is imminent. 

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Economic Commentary

How does La Nina impact the economy?

Weather events continue to capture the headlines, as Europe and southern states in the U.S. are suffering an unprecedented heat wave this month. The National Weather Service's Climate Prediction Center recently estimated that there is a 66 percent chance that La Nina conditions will prevail in the Northern hemisphere until at least the end of 2022, which would mark the third straight year of this weather pattern. Nationwide economist Scott Murray shares more about these major weather events and their economic impact.