I have been turning to charts more regularly for my weekly blog posts than I have in the past. Like most people, I see many of the challenges and price pressures resulting from the massively disrupted global supply chain. It shows up in terribly unreliable contractors (I’m having a pool built so I am experiencing this first hand) and the significant increase in the cost of materials that are leading to the rationing of some goods like plywood and even chlorine.
Last week I discussed the possibility that housing could be the canary in the coal mine with regard to an important area of the economy starting to be impacted by higher prices. I wanted to go more in-depth with many more housing-related charts and then end with one non-housing chart that I think trumps everything else in terms of why I think the Fed will remain on hold in terms of raising rates.
The multi-trillion dollar question is whether inflation is transitory. The Fed and other central bankers believe it is as this chart depicts.
As I’ve written about before, the Fed’s reaction function has switched from a forecasting-based approach to one that is now outcomes-focused in terms of needing to see tangible improvements occurring on Main Street even if it leads to speculation and large rewards on Wall Street.
Japan has been my model for why I think interest rates will stay low. Its rapidly aging society has led to a shrinking pool of labor over the last two decades which has led to less consumption and more savings. In addition, public spending has increased significantly to help keep the economy growing in the face of strong demographic headwinds.
Inflation is clearly one of the hottest topics for investors in particular and society more generally as the following chart shows. Core inflation has not moved commensurately with the exploding interest in the topic.
The following charts show why inflation is such a hot topic.
I’ve written many times over the years regarding my interest in the subject of mastery. I have great admiration for people who go deep into their craft and come to know it so well that they continuously find an edge to enable them to be successful over the long term and be able to persevere through the inevitable adversities that life throws our way.
Although CWS is largely an owner/operator of apartment communities, we have been developing new communities for over 25 years. Approximately 15% of our portfolio consists of properties we have developed. Given the large amount of capital looking to own apartments and the compression in cap rates,
Although I’m in the camp that the Fed will stick to its word and not raise short-term interest rates until after 2023 at the earliest, the market is betting differently. Rather than focusing on when the Fed will start raising rates, let’s assume that they will.
The first quarter was incredibly ugly for bond investors, particularly those with exposure to longer-maturity ones. Bond investors were not happy as Treasuries generated the worst quarterly return since 1980.
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