2nd Quarter 2015 Update
The 1st quarter ended giving us a mixed picture of activity. Looking at the global economy it seemed to be very uninspiring but an increase in monetary easing outside of the U.S. pushed global bond yields lower and U.S. equities higher. Economically, the U.S. still seems to be in a solid mid-cycle growth phase, coupled with Europe and Japan showing improvement. U.S. small cap stocks outpaced the large caps and high-yield corporate bonds outperformed investment-grade bonds.
The U.S. is still leading in the global economic recovery but it appears that the developed countries economies are catching up. The gains in the U.S. labor market this last year are the strongest since 2000. Wages in the small business arena is starting to rise explaining expectations for further gains in compensation. U.S. exports are struggling on the dollar strength, global demand being soft and lower oil prices which present headwinds for its exports and its multinational profits. On the other hand, the strong dollar and the low oil prices reinforce low-inflation and give some sectors, such as housing, an optimistic outlook.
This is a summary compiled from several sources.