This week saw two reasons to celebrate in the US. First, it’s 4th of July week and, second, we have started the 121th month of economic expansion, the longest in US history. The former is obviously a festive event, but turning to the economy, is there still reason to celebrate? The answer depends on the perspective. Looking back and where we have arrived, Americans can uncork a bottle:  the US is in a sweet spot. However, upon closer inspection, signs of weakness are accumulating. To a large degree, they come from abroad: global growth is slowing and the cost of the confrontations on trade becomes increasingly visible.

William De Vijlder - EcoTV Week - July 2019

Two celebrations

Independence day is obviously a festive event, but turning to the economy, is there still reason to celebrate? The answer depends on the perspective. Looking back and where we have arrived, Americans can uncork a bottle: the US is in a sweet spot.

The labour market is very strong, the unemployment rate is very low, corporate profits are growing, Wall Street is at record highs, inflation is well under control, technological innovation is in acceleration mode, etc. To a certain degree it is reminiscent of the second half of the nineties, the era of Goldilocks.

Upon closer inspection

Looking ahead, it’s all about trade