April 2021 Economic Forecast

The economic recovery continues to lift some segments more than others, largely because of the grossly uneven impact of COVID. However, make no mistake about it: the economic recovery is spreading to more and more segments of the economy, and the ascent will continue through 2021 and 2022. The recovery is sufficiently broad based to mean that even those markets currently being left behind will experience rise as more and more vaccinations are administered and we get closer to herd immunity. Leading indicators support this contention, including the S&P 500 and residential construction, as well as the more “coincident” indicators such as Nondefense Capital Goods New Orders and Employment. These trends are the economic realities with which we must contend if our businesses are to be positioned to satisfy market demand.

Against this backdrop is a seeming political urgency to pass the American Jobs Plan, raise corporate income taxes, and increase the deficit. We are in one of those periods when it is reasonably obvious to us that the body politic is being reactionary (dealing with perceptions from a year ago). This is an example of why we frequently state that governments are reactionary, that political actions sometimes make more sense from the perspective of the rearview mirror, and that they are fraught with unintended consequences as a result.

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