Joe Brusuelas in the News
Recent interviews and contributions featuring RSM's chief economist
Joe Brusuelas is frequently asked to speak with reporters or provide commentary on the outlook for the middle market economy, including how proposed or recently enacted policy change will impact middle market businesses.
Read highlights from some of those recent conversations below. See our full media archives for more.
CNBC's Nightly Business Report, Rising National & Consumer Debt, 02/13/2019: Joining us now to talk about the implications of all of this for the economy Joe Brusuelas is back with us, he’s chief economist at RSM. Joe good to see you again. Do any of those numbers make your palms sweat? Well the fact that we’ve got people falling more than 90 days behind on their loans for auto loans does cause some concern. I’m not too worried about the national debt. Right now that’s not a problem nor should it be our concern.
Accounting Today, Podcast Risks to the economy in 2019, 02/11/2019: RSM US chief economist Joe Brusuelas lays out the national and international issues facing the economic landscape over the next 12 months.
Yahoo! Finance, January Jobs Report Stuns, Exceeding Expectations (starting at 4:00), 02/01/2019: The U.S. economy added 304,000 jobs despite last month's government shutdown. Yahoo Finance's Heidi Chung reports. RSM Chief Economist Joe Brusuelas and King's College Professor Brian Brenberg join our panel to discuss.
Yahoo! Finance, Stocks for Amazon drop after earnings report, 02/01/2019: RSM Chief Economist Joe Brusuelas and King's College Professor Brian Brenberg join Yahoo Finance's Adam Shapiro and Brian Cheung to discuss the latest in Amazon's fourth-quarter earnings report.
MarketWatch, Why wage gains may accelerate despite January pause, Jeffry Bartash, 02/01/2019: Worker pay barely rose in January despite a hefty 304,000 gain in new jobs and a slew of increases in minimum wages across the country…So there you have it. Wages are rising steadily, if slowly. That’s not a bad thing, either. It means the Federal Reserve doesn’t have to worry as much about the threat of inflation and can keep U.S. interest rates on the low side. As long as interest rates and inflation remain low, the economy is likely to keep growing and stave off its first recession in a decade. “This will no doubt provide substantial relief to policymakers at the central bank,” said Joe Brusuelas, chief economist at RSM.
Axios, 1 big thing: The two-sided jobs picture, Steve LeVine, 02/01/2019: What's happening: In reports today, the government said the U.S. economy is roaring into 2019 — but not wages…But, but, but: Though wages grew by 3.2%, or 1.3% after accounting for inflation, that is about half what it should be, said Joe Brusuelas, chief economist at RSM…"It was another month of anemic gains in hourly wages," Brusuelas said.
CNN Business, Manufacturing sector rebounded sharply in January, Paul R. La Monica, 02/01/2019: The jobs numbers for January were solid. But it was another report that showed a strong gain in manufacturing activity that ignited a rally on Wall Street Friday. Stocks rose after the Institute for Supply Management (ISM) said that its key index on manufacturing rose 2.3 percentage points from December…"ISM really turbocharged the market this morning. It wasn't the jobs report," said Joseph Brusuelas, chief economist with RSM US.
Benzinga, Federal Reserve Unanimously Votes To Leave Rates Unchanged, Elizabeth Balboa, 01/30/2019: As Fed officials intimated and economists predicted, the Federal Open Markets Committee unanimously voted Wednesday to maintain interest rates between 2.25 percent and 2.5 percent. Its statement assured constant rates for some time…RSM chief economist Joe Brusuelas anticipates two rate hikes in the back half of 2019.
Axios, 1 big thing: More Fed than ever before, 01/30/2019: A new era of more frequent press conferences begins today, and it will likely change the way investors look at Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell's words, Axios' Courtenay Brown reports…The big picture: As the Wall Street Journal's Nick Timiraos points out, there have been a series of confusing comments from Powell that have spooked markets. Both investors and the chairman himself will now have to get used to a bigger and more regular dose of Powell. "We do not envy Chair Powell, who is clearly not a verbal stunt pilot, on how he plans to address the questions he will face from aggressive financial journalists following the release of the Fed statement," says RSM chief economist Joe Brusuelas.
Dallas Business Journal, Economist: Shutdown’s impact on DFW and Texas economy will linger, Bill Hethcock, 01/25/2019: The partial government shutdown may have ended, at least for now, but the impact on the Dallas-Fort Worth and Texas economies will be lingering and substantial. That’s the view of Joe Brusuelas, chief economist for audit, tax and consulting firm RSM U.S. LLP. Brusuelas shared his thoughts in an interview with the Dallas Business Journal on Friday. “The impacts on the Texas economy of the government shutdown are going to be highly asymmetric,” Brusuelas said.
Chief Investment Officer, How the Government Shutdown Will Ding the Employment Report, 01/30/2019: The US has been riding a good-news tide of rising employment and dropping joblessness for some time. Thanks to the recent 35-day partial government shutdown, that’s about to be reversed, at least temporarily. That’s the projection of RSM chief economist Joe Brusuelas, who expects the national unemployment rate to rise to 4.1% from 3.9% in December. When the Bureau of Labor Statistics issues its numbers on Friday, he wrote in a research report, that will mark the first net loss of jobs since September 2010, a full 99 months ago.
Houston Business Journal, TSA security checkpoint at Houston’s George Bush Intercontinental Airport to reopen, Olivia Pulsinelli, 01/28/2019: Terminal B at Houston’s George Bush Intercontinental Airport will return to normal operations this week now that the partial government shutdown has ended…The length of the partial shutdown is unprecedented, so many of the economic ramifications can’t yet be quantified, Joe Brusuelas, chief economist for audit, tax and consulting firm RSM US LLP, told the Dallas Business Journal. “The impacts on the Texas economy of the government shutdown are going to be highly asymmetric,” he said.
San Antonio Express-News, San Antonio-area shutdown victims hope truce is lasting, Lynn Brezosky, 01/24/2019: After a month without a paycheck, federal prison worker Arthur Trevino was glad to hear news Friday that President Donald Trump had agreed to reopen the federal government. But he won’t forget the financial pain he and his family had lived through anytime soon…Joe Brusuelas, the Austin-based chief economist for RSM U.S., a tax consulting firm, said a continued shutdown would have inflicted even more pain on transportation hubs, such as Houston, with large numbers of unpaid Federal Aviation Administration, Customs and Border Protection, and TSA workers. Last week, a “sick-out” among unpaid TSA workers had forced the closing of a Bush International Airport terminal in Houston.
BankDirector.com, Will Banks Draw a Bust Card on the Economy?, Jack Milligan, 01/16/2019: Anyone who has ever played blackjack can appreciate the decision that bank chief executive officers and independent directors face today with the red-hot U.S. economy. There are two decidedly different views on how the economy will perform over the next 19 to 24 months…If Foster and Vitner give voice to the optimistic outlook, Chief Economist Joe Brusuelas at the consulting firm RSM takes a dimmer view of the economy’s likely performance over the next two years. Brusuelas forecasts the U.S. economy to grow between 2.2 percent and 2.5 percent in 2019, and then drop to 1.8 percent in 2020. “My sense is that the [tax cut], which in part is responsible for the strong growth we’re having, has already peaked,” he says.
NBC News, The government shutdown's forgotten victims, Dareh Gregorian, 01/19/2019: The government shutdown has already cost federal contractors — and their employees — between $5 and $6 billion, experts say. And unlike the 800,000 furloughed federal employees who haven't been paid since the longest shutdown in U.S. history began on Dec. 22, the contractors aren't likely to get back pay when the impasse eventually ends…"We economists are likely severely underestimating the economic impact due to the loss of work from government contractors," said Joseph Brusuelas, chief economist for international consulting RSM US. "We are in uncharted terrain with a shutdown of this breadth and depth."
NPR, Government Shutdown Causing Far Greater Damage To Economy Than Previously Estimated, Jim Zaroroli, 01/16/2019: …And that kind of pull back on spending can lead to slower growth as a whole, especially in places with a lot of federal employees. Joseph Brusuelas, Chief Economist at RSM, says there are cities such as Ogden, Utah, site of a large IRS facility: “These are highly paid professionals with educations who aren’t receiving income. We’re going to see at least two paychecks missed by these individuals. That’s an entire month of pay.”
Marketplace, Small, medium business CEOs are losing a lot of confidence in the economy, Mitchell Hartman, 01/16/2019: Joseph Brusuelas at RSM consulting says economic and political problems are piling on now, “causing what we call a growing uncertainty tax on the economy.” He predicts businesses will hold back on investment and expansion plans while that uncertainty reigns.
NBC News, Long airport waits among the mounting problems as government shutdown drags on, Dareh Gregorian, Vaughn Hillyard and Maura Barrett, 01/14/2019: Long security lines plagued travelers at several airports across the country Monday due to the partial government shutdown…Joseph Brusuelas, chief economist at the accounting firm RSM US, told NBC News that increased airport woes might force both sides to find a way to end the shutdown because of the potential affects on businesses.
NBC News, The 'doomsday' scenario: Here's what happens if the shutdown drags on, 01/10/2019: The country would face an economic hellscape if the government shutdown lasts "months or even years," as the president has suggested it might, experts tell NBC News…By the end of February, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP, run by the Department of Agriculture, would be out of funding — meaning almost 40 million low-income Americans could find themselves struggling to pay for food, said Joseph Brusuelas, chief economist for the accounting firm RSM US…"The near-term impact is people getting evicted, having their heat turned off and not having enough food," Brusuelas said.
MarketWatch, Voters blame Trump, Republicans for shutdown in poll | Democrats to probe family separation, detention, Robert Schroeder, 01/09/2019: Nearly half of American voters — 47% — say it’s President Donald Trump who is mostly to blame for the partial government shutdown, according to a new Politico/Morning Consult poll taken before the president’s Oval Office address Tuesday night…Economist Joe Brusuelas of RSM has estimated that if the shutdown extends to a year it could reduce gross domestic product by as much as 1%.
Huffington Post, How The Trump Administration Could Keep Food Assistance Going During The Shutdown, Arthur Delaney, 01/08/2019: There’s a way for the Trump administration to continue food assistance during the government shutdown ― at least according to one legal theory…Joe Brusuelas, an economist with the accounting firm RSM, estimated a full year without SNAP benefits would reduce gross domestic product by as much as 1 percent.
Axios, The economists who predicted a surge in gig jobs say they were wrong, Steve LeVine, 01/07/2019: n In 2016, two prominent U.S. economists turned heads with a paper stating that the country was going gig — Americans were throwing aside the traditional desire for full-time jobs and opting for the freedom and flexibility of freelance work. Now the pair — Princeton University's Alan Krueger and Harvard's Lawrence Katz — say they were fooled by economic noise and that workers are pretty much the same as they've always been…Joe Brusuelas, chief economist at RSM, tells Axios that the pair's new paper is par for the course. "If you're not getting it wrong 20% of the time, you are not doing your job," he says.
MarketWatch, Here’s what happens to the economy if food stamps are halted for a year due to the shutdown, Robert Shroeder, 01/07/2019: Here are two more ways a partial government shutdown could affect Americans if it continues: millions won’t get food stamps and the economy will grow at a slower pace. With the shutdown in its 17th day, economist Joe Brusuelas of RSM takes a look at those two issues as he says it’s increasingly likely that money to sufficiently fund the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or food stamps, will run out this month. In human terms, writes Brusuelas, 20 million low-income households and 40 million individuals would lose support.
NBC News, Jobs report is good news, but American workers still need skills training, Erik Sherman, 01/04/2019: With more and more Americans entering a booming labor market and unemployment hovering at 50-year lows, 2019 would seem to be the year of the worker…But the economy has been doing well under many measures and so education and training haven't been a first priority for governments. "This is when policymakers should think of broad retraining programs," said Joe Brusuelas, chief economist at RSM US.
Washington Post, U.S. economy added 312,000 jobs in December and wage growth gained steam, marking a strong finish to 2018, Danielle Paquette and Andrew Van Dam, 01/04/2019: The U.S. economy added 312,000 jobs in December, smashing expectations for year-end growth, and wages rose 3.2 percent in the year since December 2017 after nearly a decade of tepid improvements, federal economists reported Friday…The unemployment rate crept up to 3.9 percent — the highest level since July, the Labor Department’s latest numbers showed. That shouldn’t ring alarm bells, said Joseph Brusuelas, chief economist at RSM, an international consulting firm. “You’re bringing people back into the labor force," he said. "That’s a good thing.”
Benzinga, Economists React To Blowout December Jobs Report, Wayne Duggan, 01/04/2019: For the second straight morning, U.S. investors concerned about an imminent recession received data suggesting the economy is stronger than expected…Joseph Brusuelas, Chief Economist at RSM US LLP, said the December report doesn't change his expectations for a six-month pause in Fed rate hikes. "Today’s data reinforces the policy risks that lie ahead in 2019 even as the exaggerated topline data points to an underlying trend of roughly 220,000 in a year when the economy generated 2.638 million. Our model of the Fed’s reaction function indicates the Fed should remain on pause for the first six months of 2019 and then lift rates by 25 basis points in June with an additional increase of 25 basis points in final quarter of the year," Brusuelas said.
Bankrate, Fed chair doesn’t plan to quit, despite criticism from President Trump, Amanda Dixon, 01/04/2019: The Federal Reserve chair’s latest comments are music to investors’ ears…Given that the economy last year was more “robust” than projected, the Fed ultimately decided to increase interest rates four times in 2018. The White House has made claims that the economy is growing at or above 3 percent, says Joseph Brusuelas, chief economist with RSM, a tax, audit and consulting services provider. “One would want rates to go up with an economy growing at that rate,” he added.
The Washington Post, Millions face delayed tax refunds, cuts to food stamps as White House scrambles to deal with shutdown’s consequences, Damian Paletta and Erica Werner, 01/04/2019: Food stamps for 38 million low-income Americans would face severe reductions and more than $140 billion in tax refunds are at risk of being frozen or delayed if the government shutdown stretches into February, widespread disruptions that threaten to hurt the economy…The cumulative impact of these changes could have a major impact on the economy. Joseph Brusuelas, chief economist at RSM U.S., an accounting and consulting firm, said a prolonged shutdown would shave an entire percentage point off the U.S.’s economic growth, in part because of an “uncertainty tax” that would freeze spending by households and businesses.
The Wall Street Journal, U.S. Factory Activity Decelerates Sharply Amid Global Slowdown, Sharon Nunn and Nick Timiraos, 01/03/2019: American manufacturing growth slowed sharply in December, adding to concerns about cooling economic expansions in the U.S. and abroad…In December, analysts cut earnings forecasts for this year on most of the companies in the S&P 500, according to FactSet, for the first time in two years. But the broad decline in the manufacturing index suggests the weakness wasn’t confined to worries over trade and declines in oil prices that have idled production in the energy sector. “The U.S. is definitely in the late innings of the current business cycle,” said Joseph Brusuelas, chief economist at consulting firm RSM U.S.
Marketplace, Five things to watch out for in 2019 in the global economy, Sabri Ben-Achour, 01/01/2019: It’s not often that a year is riven with so many momentous economic changes… Here’s a look at what 2019 inherited from 2018, and the issues to watch for as we start the new year…On June 23, 2016, a majority of Britons voted to leave the European Union. Two and a half years later, there is still no agreement on how they'll actually do it. But whether there’s agreement or not, it will happen in March.“I think one of the underestimated risks to the global economic outlook in 2019 are those associated with a hard Brexit,” warns Joe Brusuelas, chief economist at RSM.
Nightly Business Report (segment available via YouTube at 7:00 mark), Market Vs the Economy,” 12/28/2018: Do you see slower growth in 2019 relative to what we’ve seen so far this year? Joe Brusuelas, RSM Chief Economist: I do, I’m expecting 2.2% growth next year as we move back to the long-term trend of 1.8 percent. That financial volatility you’ve seen over the past three months should be considered a proxy for slower cash flows linked to trade tensions around the world out of the White House.
CNN Business, Government shutdown threatens access to key economic data, Lydia DePillis, 12/26/2018: Among the many public services that Americans will miss if the partial government shutdown continues beyond this week, here's a big one: data…"Because we're already experiencing heightened volatility, this just adds another combustible element into the mix," says Joe Brusuelas, chief economist for the consulting firm RSM US.
Associated Press, Trump assails Fed as the ‘only problem our economy has’, Josh Boak, 12/24/2018: President Donald Trump lashed out at the Federal Reserve on Monday after administration officials spent the weekend trying to assure the public and financial markets that Jerome Powell’s job as Fed chairman was safe…“My sense is the Mnuchin tweets don’t tell us much about the economy, but they provide unusual insight into the chaos inside the White House,” said Joseph Brusuelas, chief economist at the consultancy RSM. “Rather than instilling confidence, it created confusion and raised more questions than it answered. Foremost among those is, how safe is the job of Jay Powell as chairman of the Federal Reserve?”
Washington Post, As stocks drop, Trump fears he’s losing his best argument for reelection, Heather Long, Josh Dawsey and Thomas Heath, 12/20/2018:President Trump has kept an almost obsessive watch on the stock market as it has lurched lower in recent weeks, tuning in to Fox Business and checking in with Lou Dobbs, a host on the network…“The market has lost confidence in the narrative coming out of the White House on the economy and trade,” said Joseph Brusuelas, chief economist at RSM, a multinational network of accounting firms.
Financial Times, Fed watchers ask: Where did the doves go?, Matthew Rocco, 12/19/2018: The Federal Reserve may have lowered its expectations for future rate rises and US economic growth, but policymakers didn’t exactly take as sharp a dovish turn as many economists and investors had anticipated…Likewise, RSM US chief economist Joseph Brusuelas emphasised that a pause in rate rises next year “does not imply the Fed will stop after its December rate hike”: The statement and the summary of economic projections were not as dovish as many market participants desired, which from our vantage point does suggest that the Fed will hike rates as many as twice in 2019. Thus, investors or policymakers who are concluding that it’s one and done for the Fed are likely to be disappointed in the year ahead.”
Benzinga, The Federal Reserve Issues Fourth Rate Hike Of 2018, Wayne Duggan, 12/19/2018: On Wednesday, the Federal Reserve delivered the interest rate hike the markets were expecting. The Fed announced it will be upping the fed funds target rate by 0.25 percent to a range of 2.25-2.50 percent…RSM US LLP chief economist Joe Brusuelas said investors likely didn’t get what they were hoping for from the Fed. “The statement and the summary of economic projections were not as dovish as many market participants desired, which from our vantage point does suggest that the Fed will hike rates as many as twice in 2019,” Brusuelas said following the Fed’s decision. “Thus, investors or policymakers who are concluding that it’s one and done for the Fed are likely to be disappointed in the year ahead.”
ABL Advisor, Middle Market Outlook Remains Strong Amid Concerns About Inflation, Labor Market, 12/19/2018: In the fourth quarter of 2018, the MMBI posted a composite score of 132.0, a slight 2.4-point decrease from last quarter's 134.4…"This quarter's MMBI performance conforms to our forecast for a moderating economy as we head into 2019, but business activity – particularly in the middle market – remains strong, and a recession is far from imminent," said Joe Brusuelas, RSM US LLP chief economist. "Even so, clouds are forming on the horizon related to declining fiscal outlays later in 2019, inflationary pressures and, perhaps most importantly, an uncertain outlook for tariffs and trade policy."
Marketplace, Holiday shopping forecasts are good, but not as good as 2017, Mitchell Hartman, 12/17/2018: Consumer confidence and spending have held up well against a backdrop of economic warning signs — from the volatile stock market to the faltering housing market. Economist Joe Brusuelas at RSM expects consumers to remain upbeat as the job market remains strong, with unemployment continuing to fall and wages rising in coming months.
The Wall Street Journal, Hiring Slows as Wages Grow, Unemployment Holds at Multidecade Low, Eric Morath, 12/07/2018: U.S. employers slowed their hiring in November, but wage growth matched the highest rate in nearly a decade and unemployment held at its lowest level in nearly half a century, signs of an economy that could be losing some momentum at the end of a strong year…“The economy is slowing and hiring is going to slow with it,” said Joe Brusuelas, chief economist at consulting firm RSM US. “Business activity remains stout, but we are seeing some cracks.” He pointed to supply-chain disruptions due to the trade dispute with China and a sluggish housing market.
Associated Press, US hiring slower but steady as employers add 155K jobs, Christopher Rugaber, 12/07/2018: U.S. businesses added a smaller but still-healthy number of jobs last month, while the unemployment rate remained at a five-decade low and wages rose at a solid clip…“The economy continues to churn out new jobs and reflects the strong underlying business conditions that point to steady, albeit slower job growth and economic activity in 2019,” said Joe Brusuelas, chief economist at consulting firm RSM. “This report strongly implies that a recession is not looming just over the horizon."
Benzinga, Economists React To The November Jobs Report, Wayne Duggan, 12/07/2018: The S&P 500 rebounded Friday morning after the latest U.S. jobs report was slightly weaker than expected…Joseph Brusuelas, Chief Economist at RSM US LLP, said a minor jobs growth miss won't be enough to deter the Fed from sticking to its plan. “The 155,000 increase in total employment should allay that the Fed will push rates well above neutral in coming months putting at risk the nine-year-old economic expansion,” Brusuelas said.
Middle Market Growth, RSM’s Joe Brusuelas on the Middle Market’s Labor Dilemma, 11/20/2018: Joe Brusuelas, chief economist for RSM, joined MMG Editor Kathryn Mulligan to provide an economic update for the middle market, including how the tight labor market, trade tensions and monetary policy decisions will impact midsize companies. Brusuelas expects the labor shortage will lead to production bottlenecks next year, prompting companies to substitute robotics and automation for human labor, and he says middle-market leaders should plan to increase wages by as much as 4 percent over the next six months to attract qualified employees.
Washington Post, Trump’s trade war may have helped Democrats win the House, 11/9/2018: Minnesota’s 8th Congressional District, which runs along the U.S.-Canada border, has one of the highest concentrations of iron miners in the country. Republicans took it from Democrats in Tuesday’s midterm election amid a surge in the industry propelled in part by President Trump’s tariffs on China… “It’s very clear, based on how they lost seats in the Upper Midwest, that declining agricultural markets likely led to the overturning of the GOP majority in the House,” said Joe Brusuelas, an economist with RSM, an international accounting firm. “It’s hard to imagine that these seats would have flipped anyway.”
Associated Press, With split Congress, prospect for economic deals looks dim, Josh Boak, 11/08/2018: President Donald Trump floated the idea Wednesday of partnering with the newly Democratic-led House on two ideas that could prove popular with voters: Increasing spending on America’s infrastructure and limiting drug prices…Still, Trump could be pressured to bargain with the Democrats on two major fiscal issues with consequences for the economy, said Joe Brusuelas, chief economist at the consultancy RSM.
Benzinga, Tariffs, Drug Prices, Legislative Gridlock: What Economists Are Watching Following The Midterm Election, Wayne Duggan, 11/07/2018: Democrats didn’t get the blue wave they hoped for Tuesday, but they picked up enough votes to take the majority in the House of Representatives, with Republicans maintaining control of the Senate…The primary election takeaway for most investors can be boiled down to one word, said RSM US LLP chief economist Joseph Brusuelas. “Gridlock — that’s the primary economic and financial implication of the Democrats’ takeover of the U.S. House of Representatives and the Republicans’ retention of power in the Senate,” Brusuelas said Wednesday.
MarketWatch, Evidence that U.S.-China trade talks are the biggest catalyst for the stock market, Mark Decambre, 11/04/2018: U.S. stocks bounced back this week after a nasty October. And while experts have cited a number of factors behind the resurgence in equities—including stocks being oversold and a strong economic backdrop—it would appear that one key narrative has helped to drive stocks toward a four-day rally: developments around the U.S.-China trade skirmish…That is reflected in the following tweet from Joe Brusuelas, chief economist with RSM: Rumors of a US-China trade truce look more like an attempt to talk up the market ahead of the election rather than real progress on the trade spat. I'm still telling client to prepare for a full 25% tariff on $517 billion of Chinese imports by mid-2019.
The Washington Post, ‘That was shocking’: Strong job gains give GOP extra fuel heading into Election Day, Heather Long and Danielle Paquette, 11/02/2018: Hiring surged and wages grew more than they have in almost a decade, the government said Friday in a report seized on by Republicans just before the midterm elections as evidence their policies are delivering for American workers. In a key economic snapshot before Tuesday’s vote, the Labor Department’s monthly jobs report showed that the typical worker’s earnings rose by 3.1 percent in the past year — the biggest such leap since 2009. “This is the best labor environment in over a decade,” said Joseph Brusuelas, chief economist at RSM U.S., an international consulting firm.
Benzinga.com, October Unemployment Rate Unchanged; Economist Says Fed Will Likely Read Data As 'Modestly Inflationary', Hannah Genig, 11/02/2018: The Bureau of Labor Statistics releases a report each month outlining the employment landscape. After a weather-induced slowdown last month due to Hurricane Michael, numbers are rising again…The October U.S. employment report demonstrated a strong rebound in hiring, with a 3.1-percent gain in average hourly earnings, said RSM US LLP Chief Economist Joseph Brusuelas.
MarketWatch, Economists ‘wowed’ by October jobs report as wage growth picks up, Robert Schroeder, 11/02/2018: Economists said October’s payrolls report showed all-around strength, highlighting wages climbing 3.1% in the past 12 months as they called the data consistent with further tightening by the Federal Reserve…RSM chief economist Joseph Brusuelas said the data “just about guarantees” a December interest-rate hike by the Federal Reserve. US Nov NFP Policy Implications: The employment data will reaffirm the growing hawkish outlook at the Fed. In my estimation this just about guarantees at December rate hike. I expect four 25bps hikes in 2019 in contrast with the current Fed forecast of three.
Investing.com, Jobs Report Adds More Support to Fed Rate Hikes, 11/02/2018: October’s solid jobs report provided more data for the Federal Reserve to move ahead with another interest rate hike in December…RSM chief economist Joseph Brusuelas said the data will reaffirm the growing hawkish outlook at the Fed. “In my estimation this just about guarantees at December rate hike,” he said. “I expect four 25 basis point hikes in 2019 in contrast with the current Fed forecast of three.
Reuters, U.S. job growth soars; annual wage gain largest since 2009, Lucia Mutikani, 11/02/2018: U.S. job growth rebounded sharply in October and wages recorded their largest annual gain in 9-1/2 years, pointing to further labor market tightening that could encourage the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates again in December…“The risk in 2019 is that the Fed will increase the pace of rate hikes,” said Joe Brusuelas, chief economist at RSM in New York. “Market participants will likely need to adjust their expectations going forward.”
Industry Week, Why Aren’t Tax Cuts Translating to Capital Spending?, Joseph Brusuelas, 10/26/2018: The 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act was intended to spur productivity-enhancing investment. For many middle market firms, it represents a once-in-a-generation opportunity to capitalize on a tax windfall. The money could bolster outlays on equipment, software and intellectual property during a time of profound technological disruption across all industrial ecosystems. However, RSM’s proprietary research shows an apparent reluctance on the part of midsize companies to invest in these areas, presenting one of the emerging economic policy puzzles in the current cyclical expansion…Joseph Brusuelas is chief economist for RSM, a global accounting firm for the middle market.
MarketWatch, GDP ‘impressive,’ but investment is a weak spot, economists say, Robert Schroeder, 10/26/2018: Here are some comments from economists on third-quarter gross domestic product, which the government said decelerated a bit to a still-solid 3.5% annual rate…Joseph Brusuelas said the report would reaffirm the Fed’s monetary policy path: Q4'18 GDP Policy Implications: Topline & internals will reaffirm monetary policy path at the Fed. Investors should anticipate 25bps rate hike in December & at least 3 more in 2019. Some real concern about path of capital expenditures given rising trade tensions.
Business Insider, The solid GDP report is raising red flags on one of Trump's signature promises about tax cuts, Akin Oyedele, 10/26/2018: The US economy is still in high gear, thanks to consumers who still have the means to empty their wallets…"While it is still too early to come to conclusions on the relative effectiveness of the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, there has to be some concern over this development," said Joe Brusuelas, the chief economist at RSM.
BBC Scotland, Good Morning Scotland, Gary Robertson and Hayley Millar, 10/18/2018: It’s a big day for Brexit as we’ve been hearing. There’s increasing attention from the U.S. on what’s been happening. Joe Brusuelas is chief economist of one of the U.S. biggest financial services firm RSM… What is the U.S. making of these latest developments? U.S. has a very interesting outlook on this when it comes to Brexit. Listen to Joe’s interview starting at 1:42:15.
Financial Times, Quarterly survey shows more companies now believe Brexit will damage their business than help them, Andy Bounds, 10/17/2018: The UK’s midsized businesses no longer expect to emerge from Brexit stronger as the prospect of leaving the EU without a deal grows. The quarterly Brexit Monitor from RSM, the audit and consulting firm, has turned negative with more companies believing that Brexit will damage their companies in the next two years than help them…Joe Brusuelas, chief economist at RSM, said that leaving the EU without a deal would becalm the UK economy. Sterling would drop by 15 per cent against the dollar, growth would slow to zero or less and inflation rise to 3 per cent. “There will be a shock, whatever people tell you,” he said.
CNBC, The Fed is undergoing a major change, and the market is having a fit, Jeff Cox, 10/10/2018: The recent financial market volatility has been caused at least in part by the Federal Reserve, and central bank officials may not mind…"There is no Powell put," said Joseph Brusuelas, chief economist at RSM. "They are absolutely moving in the direction of normalization of monetary policy and withdrawal of what is essentially the stance of the Bernanke/Yellen Fed."
MarketWatch, Christmas sweaters will be in style this holiday season, Tonya Garcia, 10/09/2018: …Still, all of this doesn’t add up to spendthrifty consumers. “We expect the U.S. consumer to behave in an eminently rational manner in the face of the recent imposition of a 10% tax on 5,745 individual goods imported from China valued at $200 billion,” wrote Joe Brusuelas, chief economist at RSM, which provides audit, tax and consulting services for the middle market. “Moreover, given a push by the current administration to boost that tax to 25% in January, as well as potentially impose an additional 25% tax on an unnamed number of goods valued at $267 billion, it is likely American consumers will pull a good bit of consumption and economic activity forward into the final quarter of 2018,” Brusuelas said.
Associated Press, As joblessness falls, skilled workers might be hard to find, Josh Boak, 10/07/2018: Are America’s employers at risk of running out of skilled people to hire?... When Joe Brusuelas scanned the September jobs report, he saw signs that a shortage of skilled workers could emerge in the near future. He’s the chief economist for RSM, a consulting firm that specializes in mid-size businesses. “Over the past 12 months, we should start to see the pace of hiring grind down,” he said.
Cheddar, Unemployment Hits 49-Year Low, 10/05/2018: Stocks fell following the release of mixed employment data. The U.S. economy added 134,000 jobs in September, missing estimates of 185,000. Employment, however, fell to its lowest level in 49 years. Joe Brusuelas, Chief Economist at RSM U.S., explains what the numbers tell us about the health of the U.S. economy.
The New York Times, With 8 Years of Job Gains, Unemployment Is Lowest Since 1969, Ben Casselman, 10/05/2018: The Labor Department released its official hiring and unemployment figures for September on Friday, providing the latest snapshot of the American economy…Economists and business leaders have warned for months that Mr. Trump’s trade policies could threaten the recovery, particularly in the manufacturing sector. There is little sign of that so far, however. Manufacturers added 18,000 jobs in September, and the revised figures erased what was initially reported as a small decline in August. Other measures of the industrial sector likewise show continued growth. “We really don’t have any negative impact from the tariffs yet,” said Joseph Brusuelas, chief economist for the consulting firm RSM.
Chief Investment Officer, Storm Impact May Mute September Job Report, but Not Trade War, Larry Light , 10/03/2018: The September jobs report should be a more muted gain of 168,000, according to forecasters polled by MarketWatch…Indeed, as Joseph Brusuelas, RSM chief economist, pointed out, initial predictions for September 2017 were for a 25,000 loss owing to Hurricanes Harvey and Irma—and the month ended up with a 14,000 gain.
Washington Post, Analysts say Trump may be overly optimistic on new North American trade deal, David J. Lynch and Heather Long, 10/01/2018: President Trump casts his new North American trade agreement as “the biggest trade deal in the United States’ history” — one that would return lost manufacturing jobs to American shores, discourage future outsourcing of factory work, and “send cash and jobs pouring into the United States.”… “We do not anticipate an increase in U.S. auto manufacturing employment. Rather, it will result in an advance in the use of robotics and automation in Mexico,” said Joseph Brusuelas, chief economist at audit firm RSM.
Retail Dive, The holidays, in this economy?, Daphne Howland, 09/28/2018: After a few years of nail-biting holiday seasons that belied the post-Great Recession economic recovery, retailers this year appear to have the wind at their backs…"The economy and the consumer is on fire right now," Joe Brusuelas, chief economist with global accountancy RSM, told Retail Dive in an email, adding that he also expects holiday spending to outpace last year's 5.5% increase.
Benzinga, The Federal Reserve, As Expected, Issues Third Rate Hike Of 2018, Wayne Duggan, 09/26/2018: The Federal Reserve delivered Wednesday the interest rate hike the markets were expecting…RSM US LLP chief economist Joe Brusuelas certainly wasn’t surprised by the decision…“This is in line with Fed rhetoric and the implied path of monetary policy embedded in the dot plots and the summary of economic productions,” Brusuelas said following the Fed’s decision.
Benzinga, What To Expect From This Week's Fed Meeting, Wayne Duggan, 09/25/2018: The Federal Reserve beginning Tuesday is holding a two-day meeting…RSM US LLP chief economist Joe Brusuelas says the Fed has done a fairly good job hinting at two more rate hikes this year, but its commentary this week could set the stage for a more hawkish 2019 as well.
Marketplace, Why employers are feeling more pressure to raise pay, Mitchell Hartman, 09/07/2018: Rising wages are a challenge to many employers’ bottom lines. Joe Brusuelas is chief economist at consulting firm RSM: “How small and medium sized enterprises are going to cope with that is it’s going to pull forward the point of automation. Sort of the lower entry wage workers are increasingly being crowded out due to increased technology so you can focus on paying a higher premium to those skilled workers.”
Retail Dive, August retail sales miss as gas prices rise, Daphne Howland, 09/17/2018: Retail sales rose 0.1% in August, according the latest monthly report from the U.S. Commerce Department's Census Bureau. The figures (which excluded sales from auto dealers, gas stations, building materials and food services) were the weakest showing in several months and one that missed expectations…Joe Brusuelas, chief economist with global accountancy RSM, agrees. "The major headwind at this point is a possible disruptiozn to prices linked to tariffs," he told Retail Dive in an email.
Fortune, 10 Years Since Lehman Brothers Collapse, Here's What's Still Hurting, Lucinda Shen, 09/14/2018: In many ways, the U.S. economy appears to have made a smooth recovery since the bankruptcy of Wall Street titan Lehman Brothers marked the start of the 2008 financial crisis…But the financial crisis of 2018 may have helped speed up the transition for some business owners, says RSM Chief Economist Joe Brusuelas, pushing companies to layoff workers and invest in machinery in the hopes of surviving the crisis.
Axios, The coming financial contagion, Steve Levine, 09/14/2018: The party seems only to be roaring ahead — Japan's Nikkei index today closed at its highest level since February, and U.S. and European stock markets finished the week up as well…The current picture of trouble begins with the end of low, flat interest rates, which have fueled the global economy since the financial crash: the U.S., the EU and Japan have all begun to raise rates, with the Fed expected to increase them another notch later this month. The other main indicator
Axios, Workers are more confident but still mistrustful, Steve Levine, 09/11/2018: A decade after the financial crash helped to crater U.S. public faith in their leaders, American workers seem to be growing more confident, economists say, quitting their jobs at the highest rate in 17 years in search of better employment. What's going on: U.S. businesses had more than a half-million unfilled jobs in July, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. That calculates out to 0.91 available workers for every job, according to Joe Brusuelas, chief economist at RSM.
Washington Post, A guide to the financial crisis — 10 years later, Rene Merle, 09/10/2018: A decade after the financial crisis, the casualties of the economic near-collapse are fading from memory. But that period of turmoil permanently altered the U.S. economy and the financial system…In all, the Great Recession led to a loss of more than $2 trillion in global economic growth, or a drop of nearly 4 percent, between the pre-recession peak in the second quarter of 2008 and the low hit in the first quarter of 2009, according to Moody’s Analytics. “It was such a shock to the economic system that it unleashed dynamics that we still don’t understand fully,” said Joe Brusuelas, chief economist at RSM, an audit and advisory firm.
Cheddar, U.S. Job Market is Booming and Wages Finally Increase, 09/07/2018: The U.S. economy is hitting its stride. In August employers added 201,000 jobs, beating analysts expectations and defying U.S. trade battles. Joe Brusuelas, Chief Economist for RSM explains why the job market will remain strong.
Forbes, China Moves The Trade War To WTO, And That Doesn't Look Good For America, Panos Mourdoukoutas, 09/02/2018: In the trade war with America, China seems to be doing things by the book. Like filing a complaint against American tariffs with the World Trade Organization (WTO)… “Despite widespread acknowledgement of Chinese appropriation of intellectual property, the WTO will likely rule in China’s favor on its complaints around U.S. tariffs,” says Joe Brusuelas, Chief Economist at RSM US.
The Banker, Redefining GDP, Joy McKnight, 08/31/2018: Gross domestic product (GDP) is a standardised and widely used metric to assess the economic health of a nation…Many of the large international institutions and agencies are developing supplementary indices to address GDP’s shortfalls, without abandoning the metric altogether…Joe Brusuelas, chief economist at RSM US, an audit, tax and consulting services firm, agrees with Ms Coyle that, to date, there is no consensus around what should augment GDP. “There is no one method that currently is favoured, or gaining traction, in such a manner that there is a possible point of convergence to improve our conceptual understanding of economic growth, vitality and welfare,” he says.
TD Ameritrade Network, How Bearish Investors Interpret U.S. Economic Data, 08/20/2018: We have Joe Brusuelas joining us here in studio, the Chief Economist at RSM US… Joe: Jackson Hole does is it gives you a sense of what the Fed is thinking about, it allows you to project forward where rates are going to go and where Fed Policy is going to move. I think the fact that they’re talking about concentration of power signals that the economy is firing on all cylinders, but wages aren’t rising and they want to really begin to investigate what’s happening.
Cheddar, Trump Plans to Settle Trade Dispute with China by November, 08/17/2018: Are you optimistic that the US and China can mend their trade relationship? Joe Brusuelas: Yes, but the time table that’s being put forward is highly questionable. I just don’t see them getting it together this soon… I think what we’re going to get is another agreement to agree to talk about this a little bit more. Now that boosted the market today no doubt.
CNN Money, Macy's momentum may be starting to slow, Paul R. La Monica, 08/15/2018: The department store has been one of the hottest stocks on Wall Street lately. Its shares have more than doubled in the past 12 months... Joseph Brusuelas, chief economist with RSM US, wrote in a report that the retail sales figures showed that the US economy "is firing on all cylinders."
The Washington Post, U.S. economy to grow at 3.1 percent in 2018, CBO says, Jeff Stein, 08/13/2018: The U.S. economy is projected to grow by 3.1 percent this year, as more government spending and tax cuts help propel an expansion, the Congressional Budget Office said Monday…“The wage models used to produce gains for workers are not working,” said Joseph Brusuelas, chief economist at RSM, a tax and consulting firm. “The wage growth individuals want to see [is] just not going to happen.”
Forbes, Here's How Much This Trade War Might Cost Us, Kenneth Rapoza, 08/03/2018: Wars aren't free. That includes trade wars. The Trump Administration is currently fighting a trade war with China, but also has tariffs on goods coming from Russia and Brazil… "If the tariff policy is fully implemented, the costs will likely exceed $1.3 trillion with the risk of a much greater hit to the U.S. economy than many are currently anticipating, and a premature end to the business cycle," says Joe Brusuelas, chief economist at RSM.
The Wall Street Journal, U.S. Economy Added 157,000 Jobs in July, 08/03/2018: Here's what economists are saying about the jobs report...Joseph Brusuelas, chief economist at RSM US LLP: "In our estimation, the slowing in the pace of hiring has more to do with the traditional seasonal noise and is not a signal of a change in the underlying trend growth in hiring which is closer to 224,000. We expect healthy revisions to the July gains over the next two months. While, the job gains are stout, we are growing increasingly concerned that average hourly earnings are simply not keeping up the pace of inflation."
Benzinga, Fed Leaves Interest Rates Unchanged: 'Labor Market Has Continued To Strengthen', Elizabeth Balboa, 08/01/2018: After effecting a rate hike in June, the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) of the Federal Reserve maintained rates between 1.75 percent and 2 percent at its Aug. 1 meeting... Joe Brusuelas, chief economist at RSM, anticipates a 25-basis-point increase in the federal funds rate in September to bring the range between 2 percent and 2.25 percent. Accelerated economic growth and a drop in unemployment to 3.7 percent are expected to precede another hike in December that would bring the rate between 2.5 percent and 2.75 percent.
CNBC Nightly Business Report – Nightly Business Report – July 27, 2018 (appearance: 2:17 – 5:34), 07/27/2018: Tonight on Nightly Business Report, the economy grows at its fastest pace in four years but can it continue?... Let’s turn now to Joe Brusuelas for more on the economy. He is the chief economist with RSM. Is this type of growth sustainable? Brusuelas: Well not at 4.1% it’s not. You’re going to see the economy continue to grow at just under 3% probably for at least the next quarter or two and will pick up in the last quarter of the year and finish just above 3% for the entire year of 2018.
CNBC.com – Why Trump's goal of 3 percent economic growth actually is achievable and sustainable, Jeff Cox, 07/27/2018: Getting one quarter of breakout economic growth is easy: Presidents Barack Obama and George W. Bush did so on multiple occasions, only to see things fall back into the same pattern soon after…"The economy is on much better footing. However, you can see the impact of the trade war beginning to creep into the data," said Joseph Brusuelas, chief economist at RSM. "The good stuff is the consumer is on really solid footing right now."
Benzinga – GDP Notches Strongest Growth Since 2014, Elizabeth Balboa, 07/27/2018: Gross domestic product posted the strongest quarter of growth since 2014, with the second quarter’s 4.1-percent annual rate accelerating from the first quarter’s 2.2 percent, according to the Commerce Department’s initial estimates…The strength is seen to justify a rise in Federal Reserve rates, said Joe Brusuelas, chief economist at RSM US LLP.
Yahoo!Finance – This week in Trumponomics: The economy booms, Rick Newman, 07/27/2018: President Trump got the big number he was looking for this week, when the government announced the economy grew by 4.1% in the second quarter…That’s leading some analysts to warn that good times may soon be here and gone. “The economy is not likely to experience a sustained period of four percent growth, much less three percent,” Joe Brusuelas, chief economist for investing firm RSM, wrote to clients.
Investing.com – Best U.S. Growth in Almost 4 Years Leaves the Fed Facing Trade Uncertainty, 07/27/2018: The second-quarter expansion in GDP showed the solid state of the American economy on Friday, but left economists questioning the stability of the numbers at hand, while offering little to change the Federal Reserve’s plans for monetary policy…“(There was a) 13.3% increase in exports which were clustered in agriculture exports,” RSM chief economist Joseph Brusuelas said. “Soy is the word of the day.”
The New York Times – Economy Hits a High Note, and Trump Takes a Bow, Ben Casselman, 07/27/2018: Tax cuts and federal spending are adding fuel to the already strong economy, putting the United States on a pace for its best year of growth in well over a decade…“We don’t want to overexaggerate the strength of the economy given the real risks that are being put in place by the policy choices,” said Joe Brusuelas, chief economist at the accounting firm RSM U.S.
The New York Times – Why Friday’s G.D.P. Number May Be a Size Too Big, Ben Casselman, 07/26/2018: Prepare to be excited about a blockbuster economic report on Friday morning — but not too excited…“We have yet to see any meaningful evidence of an increase” in investment, said Joe Brusuelas, chief economist at the accounting firm RSM U.S. “That’s something that you can’t make a judgment on in one or two quarters. That’s something that you make a judgment on in two or three years.”
POLITICO – Morning Money, Ben White, 07/25/2018: More GDP Hype: Via Joseph Brusuelas, Chief Economist at RSM US: “U.S. growth in the second quarter of 2018 will expand at 5.1 percent with risk to the upside to due to a host of special one-time factors that will likely not be easily replicated in coming quarters. “The combination of strong inventory building ahead of the holidays and an unusually large increase in net exports linked to foreign demand for domestic agriculture will likely somewhat overshadow the strong rebound of 3.2 percent in household spending and another strong increase in fixed business investment.
Financial Advisor Magazine, Why This Is A Stealth Bull Market, Jeffrey Saut, 07/16/2018: On CNBC last Friday, we stated that we have been in a stealth bull market…Moving on to some of last week’s economic reports, our friend Joe Brusuelas (Chief Economist of RSM) had this to say: While, the labor market remains historically tight the pace of U.S. inflation is now outpacing wage gains late in the business cycle. Inflation on a year ago basis is up 2.9 percent compared with the 2.7 percent gain in average hourly earnings amidst no gain in real average hourly earnings over the past year.
Marketplace, Small business is on a roll, Mitchell Hartman, 07/10/2018: The National Federation of Independent Business reports that its small-business optimism index fell 0.6 points in June to 107.2. . Nonetheless, the index remains near historic highs…Chalk that up in part to the Trump administration’s tax cuts, said Joe Brusuelas at consulting firm RSM. “They’ve seen their effective tax rate drop significantly, and that’s bolstered both optimism and activity,” he said.
Reuters, U.S. job growth seen strong in June, wages picking up, Lucia Mutikani, 07/06/2018: U.S. employers likely maintained a brisk pace of hiring in June while increasing wages for workers, which would reinforce expectations of robust economic growth in the second quarter and allow the Federal Reserve to continue raising interest rates…Economists expect the manufacturing sector to bear the brunt of the tit-for-tat tariffs, through a slowdown in hiring and capital expenditure. "It's hard to fathom how the robust manufacturing conditions will be sustained," said Joe Brusuelas, chief economist at RSM in New York.
Illinois Manufacturers' Association, One Step Closer to a Global Trade War, Joe Brusuelas, RSM US LLP is an IMA Member, 06/19/2018: What a difference a month makes! Effective June 1, four weeks after declaring trade spats on hold, the Trump administration slapped tariffs of 25 percent on steel and 15 percent on aluminum for Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the United Kingdom—key U.S. trading partners—and promised to slap an additional $50 billion worth of tariffs on China beginning June 15. In our estimation, if fully implemented, these tariffs, in aggregate, will shave 0.2 percent from potential growth and put more than 2 million jobs at risk. This estimate may actually understate the true nature of the tariff impact due to uncertainty around likely retaliation by China, Canada and other G-7 trading partners.
Benzinga, Economists Weigh In on Interest Rate Hike, Elizabeth Balboa, 06/13/2018: The rate hike came as no surprise. The Federal Reserve was widely expected to announce a 25-basis-point pop after its Wednesday meeting... RSM Chief Economist Joe Brusuelas said the language signals the Fed “intends to tolerate temporary deviation away from its inflation target in the near term.”… “The upgrade to the summary of economic projections implies that the Fed recognizes it will soon face a monumental decision,” Brusuelas said.
The Times, Scottish scene: Enough commissions, reports and strategies — let’s see some real action, Colin Donald, 06/03/2018: The Sustainable Growth Commission (SGC) has been praised for abandoning in its latest report, published a week ago, the more specious claims served up to the Scottish people in the 2013 white paper Scotland’s Future…An example of nimbler thinking is presented by Shanker Singham, the director of the international trade and competition unit at the Institute of Economic Affairs, a free-market think tank. Singham, an authority on trade policy and the EU, and technicalities of the Brexit negotiations, is in Glasgow next week, on a panel with Joe Brusuelas, chief economist in the US for audit consultancy RSM and Labour MEP Catherine Stihler.
Birmingham Post, Liam Fox to Speak at Birmingham Conference, Tamlyn Jones, 05/23/2018: Secretary of State for International Trade Liam Fox will be the keynote speaker at an international business conference in Birmingham next month…Joining him on the line up of speakers are America’s ambassador to the UK Robert Wood Johnson and chief economist for financial services firm RSM Joseph Brusuelas…Mr. Brusuelas is a specialist in analysing US monetary policy, labour markets, fiscal policy, economic indicators and American consumers.
Global Banking & Finance Review, Trade Friction: A Primer on the United States and China, 05/10/2018: Trade friction represents the natural state of international economic affairs. While the benefits of free trade are unassailable, from time to time, distributional impacts to distribution caused by comparative advantage and specialisation move to the forefront of economic diplomacy. The U.S.-China trade spat marks the opening salvo in a period of increasing friction within the global trade system. A bipartisan consensus in Washington contends that China should be confronted over its international trade practices. That said, some alternative strategies to those being deployed by the Trump administration can avoid upsetting global asset markets, disrupting the flow of goods and risking escalation to a trade war.
The Wall Street Journal, WSJ Wealth Adviser Briefing: Taxes, Mooch, Wine, Sharon Nunn, 05/07/2018: Curated news and analysis for wealth advisers and their clients from WSJ reporters and columnists…Market Talk: Labor Dept data show the labor force participation rate dropping to 62.8% in April from 62.9% in March and 63.0% in February… To be sure, the rate for prime-age workers, 25-54-year-olds, also declined, but the “employment to population ratio of prime aged workers between 25-54 held steady at 79.2 percent which is a cyclical high,” RSM’s Chief Economist Joseph Brusuelas noted.
The New York Times, Warren Buffett Really Likes Apple’s Shares: DealBook Briefing, Andrew Ross Sorkin, 05/04/2018: Here’s a look at how Wall Street economists are reacting to April’s jobs report... Joseph Brusuelas, the chief economist at RSM US: “The U.S. labor market has tightened to the point where firms are simply having tremendous difficulty finding qualified and available workers which is why the American unemployment rate has declined to 3.9 percent and likely on its way to 3.7 percent later this year. Once the late cycle fiscal boost that is in train into the economy in the second half of 2018, there is a significant risk that the unemployment rate will decline at a much faster pace which will present a problem for the Federal Reserve that will likely want to tighten rates a modestly quicker pace even as the US yield curve flattens.”
USA Today, First time since 2000: The pros and cons of US unemployment rate falling under 4%, Paul Davidson, 05/04/2018: The unemployment rate has slipped below 4% for the first time since 2000, and that sounds like good news for the economy…"The U.S. labor market has tightened to the point where firms are having tremendous difficulty finding qualified and available workers," says RSM Chief Economist Joe Brusuelas.
USA Today, Jobs: Unemployment rate falls to 3.9%, employers add 164,000 jobs in April, Paul Davidson, 05/04/2018: The labor market bounced back at least modestly in April as employers added 164,000 jobs and unemployment fell below 4% for the first time in 17 years, easing concerns that trade tensions and worker shortages may be crimping hiring…"The topline gain of 164,000 jobs is well within what we have thought would be a slower pace of job creation as the United States heads towards the late innings of the current business cycle," says RSM Chief Economist Joe Brusuelas.
The Washington Post, Unemployment rate falls to 3.9 percent as U.S. economy adds 164,000 jobs, Danielle Paquette, 05/04/2018: The U.S. economy added 164,000 jobs in April, and the unemployment rate fell to 3.9 percent — the lowest point since 2000, federal economists reported Friday…A demographic shift partly explains why employers are having trouble finding talent. Baby boomers, which today represent a third of the workforce, are retiring in droves, said Joe Brusuelas, chief economist at RSM, an international consulting firm. Younger workers aren’t replacing them.
CEO Today, US Vs China Trade War: Who Does It Hurt?, 04/30/2018: While not in a trade war as of yet, both oppositions in the US vs China tariff tension have given warnings and escalated hostility. If a war of sorts were to pass, who would be afflicted, and what would it do for the economy?... Additionally, Joe Brusuelas, Chief Economist at RSM International highlights the hidden victims of the US/China trade war.
Boston Business Journal, Prepare your company for blockchain business beyond bitcoin, Joe Brusuelas, 04/23/2018: Blockchain is best known as the platform supporting the cryptocurrency bitcoin, but the technology’s most far- reaching impact is developing quietly behind the scenes. Blockchain technology allows for the recording, execution and auditing of contracts in real time on distributed ledgers. It can be adopted to asset sales, payments, loans and contracts of all types. Bitcoin’s value could fall to zero and blockchain would still disrupt industry transactions. Here’s how. By eliminating the need for trusted third parties, blockchain continues the internet’s elimination of middlemen.
Marketplace, Moderate job growth in March: aberration, or sign of the future?, Mitchell Hartman, 04/06/18: The March jobs report shows there were 103,000 jobs added in the month, though many economists expected something closer to an additional 175,000…Economist Joseph Brusuelas at consulting firm RSM: The labor market has been tight – over the next 10 years, there’s going to be a shortage of around 8.5 million workers, primarily due to the demographic transition we’re going through as the baby boomer retires.” And what does that mean in terms of future job growth? “About 80,000 jobs a month to keep the unemployment rate stable.
The Wall Street Journal, March Jobs Report: Everything You Need to Know – “ Reactions: Payback for Previous Strength and Weather Disruptions, Ben Eisen, 04/06/18: Economists appear to be largely looking past weakness in the March payrolls report, noting that strength in the previous months was unsustainable. Weather also appeared to play a role, economists said. Joseph Brusuelas, chief economist, RSM US LLP: "For the past several months the labor market has been on fire, growing at a pace of 211,100 over the past six months, which given where the economy is in the business cycle amidst a tight labor market is simply not sustainable. In our estimation, seasonal issues aside, investors should get ready to observe more employment reports such as the tepid March estimate."
CNNMoney, US-China trade war fears: How bad could this get?, Patrick Gillespie, 04/04/18: The tariffs that China and the United States threatened this week could harm both sides. But they're not apocalyptic. Not yet…"What's next is we're going to see a tit-for-tat retaliation," says Joseph Brusuelas, chief US economist at RSM, a global accounting and consulting firm. "This is a classic lose-lose proposition, no one wins."
BNN, China's tariff retaliation against U.S. hitting Trump's base hardest: Economist, 04/03/2018: Joe Brusuelas, chief economist at RSM, joins BNN for a look at U.S.-China trade tensions and the outlook for North America's small and mid-sized businesses. As the U.S.-China fight intensifies, Brusuelas says that U.S. steel tariffs, Chinese retaliation, and Trump's threat of more duties on China, all add up to significant economic drag for the U.S.
Privcap, The ‘Stunning’ North American Energy Network, 03/26/2018: Withdrawal from NAFTA and the impact on the global energy sector. Based on volume 38 of RSM’s The Real Economy report, available for download here. Participants: Joe Brusuelas, Chief Economist, RSM US LLP.
The Guardian, Paper tigers? US and China in dispute over tariffs but trade war looks remote, Edward Helmore, 03/25/2018: Will two tribes go to war?... “China is reacting mildly to a set of tariffs that have largely been rolled back for almost everyone except China,” said Joe Brusuelas, chief economist with the financial advisory company RSM. “Trade friction is a natural state of affairs in the international economy and we’re engaged in a spat.”
Middle Market Growth, Joseph Brusuelas of RSM on Trade, Tariffs and China, 03/23/2018: This episode of the Middle Market Growth Conversations podcast features Joseph Brusuelas, chief economist for RSM. He spoke with MMG Editor Kathryn Mulligan by phone about the fast-moving developments with proposed tariffs on aluminum and steel imports, as well as on imports from China, and their impact on middle-market businesses.
U.S. Chamber of Commerce's Above the Fold, Tax Reform Boosts Middle Market Business Confidence to an All-Time High, Sean Hackbarth, 03/23/2018: It’s a bird, it’s a plane… No, it’s the ever-escalating RSM US Middle Market Business Index (MMBI), which reached a new all-time high in the first quarter of 2018…“The U.S. economy is growing well above its long-term trend of 1.5% amid a tightening labor market that’s fueling wage growth,” said Joe Brusuelas, RSM US LLP chief economist.
The Washington Post, In a U.S.-China trade war, Trump voters likely get hurt the most, Heather Long and Andrew Van Dam, 03/22/2018: Politicians, economists and executives agree China isn't playing fair on trade… “A tariff is an extremely inelegant tax. It’s like trying to kill a tsetse fly on your desk with an anvil. You might kill the fly but you usually end up totaling the desk & damaging the floor,” tweeted Joseph Brusuelas, chief economist at accounting firm RSM.
Inc., Middle Market Companies Are Doing Great...So Why Aren't They Investing?, Gene Marks, 03/21/2018: Middle market companies--those businesses loosely defined as having revenues of at least tens of millions of dollars per year, but less than a billion--are not only having a great year, they are looking forward to even better times to come. That's the conclusion from this quarter's U.S. Middle Market Business Index from accounting firm RSM US LLP and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. The index, which is based on the responses of more than 700 middle market executives from earlier this year, has hit an all-time high…"This quarter's findings correspond nicely with the direction of fundamental hard data, soft data, and anecdotal evidence we're seeing nationwide," Joe Brusuelas, RSM US LLP's chief economist, said in a press release.
The Wall Street Journal, The Daily Shot: 21-Mar-18, Lev Borodovsky, 03/21/2018: The United States: The US could be running a $2 trillion annual budget deficit in less than a decade. That’s a lot of new debt for the market to absorb each year… The Middle Market Business Index also shows substantial improvements. Source: RSM, U.S. Chamber of Commerce.
Privcap, The Impact of U.S. Withdrawal from NAFTA, 03/16/2018: An interview with Joe Brusuelas, chief economist for RSM, on the impact of U.S. withdrawal from NAFTA.
Middle Market Growth, The Middle Market Reading List (page 12), 03/01/2018: MMG editors asked leading economists and business leaders featured on the Middle Market Growth Conversations podcast about what they’re reading…Joseph Brusuelas Chief Economist, RSM US LLP: “Machine, Platform, Crowd: Harnessing our Digital Future” By Andrew McAfee and Erik Brynjolfsson. Brusuelas’ take: It’s about the evolution of developed economics. From, say, 1875 to 2014, the economy was essentially organized around this idea of mind.
Middle Market Growth, Middle-Market Public Policy Roundup, Ben Marsico, 03/16/2018: This week’s roundup looks at the progress of a bipartisan regulatory relief bill that passed the Senate and is on its way to the House of Representatives. Meanwhile, a trade war sparked by President Trump’s tariffs looks increasingly unlikely…Interested in what causes a trade “spat” vs. a trade war? RSM Chief Economist Joe Brusuelas wrote an article explaining the differences.
The New York Times, Will Goldman’s Blankfein Depart by the End of the Year?: Dealbook Briefing, 03/09/2018: Economists and analysts react to the jobs report…Joe Brusuelas, RSM US: “The job market continues to sizzle as the economy is in the early stages of absorbing a late cycle fiscal boost that will support a growth rate well above the long-term trend in 2018. The 313,000 job gain is more than triple that necessary to meet the demand of new entrants into the work force, which if it sustained will continue to put downward pressure on the unemployment rate. This will not be lost among an F.O.M.C. that leans hawkish in 2018 and points toward an increasing probability that the central bank will hike rates four times this year…”
The Washington Post, The economy added 313,000 jobs in February, beating expectations, Danielle Paquette, 03/09/2018: The U.S. economy added 313,000 jobs in February, smashing expectations, according to Friday’s employment report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics…"The 313,000 job gain is more than triple that necessary to meet the demand of new entrants into the work force, which if it sustained will continue to put downward pressure on the unemployment rate," said Joseph Brusuelas, chief economist at RSM US LLP, an international consulting firm.
Axios, Hiring surge: U.S. economy adds 313,000 jobs in February, Alayna Treene, Steve LeVine, 03/09/2018: The U.S. added 313,000 jobs last month, the most since mid-2016 and far higher than the 200,000-235,000 consensus forecast, according to the Labor Department's latest figures…"This labor market is on fire and wage gains are in train," said Joe Brusuelas, chief economist at RSM, a tax consulting firm.
The New York Times, A Trade Skirmish is Underway. That Doesn’t Mean a Trade War is Near., Neil Irwin, 03/08/2018: Many events of the last week have had the ominous undertones of a destructive global trade war…Joe Brusuelas, the chief economist at the accounting firm RSM, sketched out what a true trade war would look like. “The first indicator that a trade war has begun would be the announced intention to withdraw from, or abrogate, current trade treaty arrangements,” Mr. Brusuelas wrote recently.
MarketWatch, Why a full-blown Trump trade war won’t happen, Jeffry Bartash, 03/07/2018: Donald Trump’s plan to impose big tariffs on foreign steel and aluminum has spawned lots of talk about a destabilizing global trade war that’s an echo of the Great Depression, but the White House move is better characterized, for now, as a mere skirmish…Economist Joe Brusuelas of RSM LLP said he figures the new tariffs on imported steel could force U.S. customers to fork over an additional $9 billion–plus. Even if 10,000 steel jobs were saved or created, the cost to the U.S. economy would be more than $900,000 per job.
U.S. News and World Report, World Bracing for Risk of Trump's Trade War, Josh Boak, 03/02/2018: President Donald Trump's plan to slap taxes on steel and aluminum imports was branded Friday as "absolutely unacceptable" by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau of Canada, the United States' biggest foreign source of both metals…Joseph Brusuelas, chief economist at the consultant RSM, sees three possible stages in any trade war.
CNBC's Nightly Business Report, Nightly Business Report – March 1, 2018, 03/01/2018: Tonight on Nightly Business Report, Washington rattled Wall Street. Stocks fall sharply after the White House promised steep tariffs on steel and aluminum…Let’s turn now to our two guests for more on the markets and the economy in light of this news today…Joe Brusuelas, chief economist with RSM.
Benzinga, Height Securities: Concrete Proposal Unlikely To Emerge From Trump's Tariff Meeting With Steel, Aluminum Execs, Elizabeth Balboa, 03/01/2018: President Donald Trump will meet with steel and aluminum executives Thursday, leading some to speculate an import tariff announcement is imminent, according to Reuters…RSM Chief Economist Joe Brusuelas said tariff talk should not be considered positive.
CNBC, Market awaits first Fed report after Yellen's hand-off to Powell, Jeff Cox, 02/20/2018: Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell already has had his first stern test from the market. Soon, he'll face another one on Capitol Hill. "The market will be posed to move off any hints with respect to the future path of rates and upward revisions," said Joe Brusuelas, chief economist at RSM.
The Washington Post, GOP senator suggests we need fewer immigrants because robots are coming, Heather Long, 02/20/2018: Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) last week helped kill the bipartisan immigration deal in Congress...“Robots will create more jobs.” Brusuelas points out that many of the fastest-growing jobs today, such as “user design” and “cloud engineers,” weren't around a decade ago. We like to talk about how robots kill jobs, but we tend to talk a lot less about how many other jobs are being created in the economy.
Privcap, Michigan Will be Hit Hardest by a NAFTA Withdrawal, 02/20/2018: Privcap interviews Joe Brusuelas, chief economist for RSM on how withdrawal from NAFTA will harm Michigan and other states hardest hit from the recession. Based on volume 38 of RSM’s The Real Economy report, available for download here.
Privcap, The Impact of U.S. Withdrawal from NAFTA, 02/16/2018: Privcap interviews Joe Brusuelas, chief economist for RSM on the impact of U.S. withdrawal from NAFTA.Newsweek
Newsweek, What is a stock market correction? Here's what you need to know, Ryan Sit, 02/10/18: The stock market has been backsliding this week, erasing 2018's gains and recording the two largest single-day declines in points ever…Joe Brusuelas, chief economist at the investment firm RSM in New York, said investors see the Fed's plan as the "end of the era of easy money."
CNBC, You don't go from inflation being too low to it being a big problem..., 02/09/18: CNBC Senior Contributor Larry Kudlow; Greg Ip, Wall Street Journal; and Joe Brusuelas, RSM U.S. chief economist, discuss the potential impact of rising rates on the markets and overall economy.
Yahoo Finance Market Movers, Stocks continue to waver, Trump signs budget to keep gov't open, 02/09/18: Yahoo Finance’s Alexis Christoforous, Jared Blikre, Rick Newman and Joe Brusuelas, chief economist at RSM discuss the big stories of the day. Alexis also talks with Brian O’Kelley, CEO at AppNexus, about advertisers and the Olympics.
Yahoo Finance, Yahoo Finance Answers: When did the stock market last act like this?, Rick Newman, 02/09/18: Amid the market turmoil that has suddenly reared up, investors have a lot of questions. One of the questions the Yahoo Finance audience recently put to us: When was the last time the stock market behaved like this?... “This isn’t over,” Joe Brusuelas, chief economist at financial firm RSM told Yahoo Finance on Feb. 9. “While the worst may be behind us, we should expect several days if not several weeks of more mind-bending volatility.”
Yahoo Finance, Government debt is exploding. Here’s the danger, Rick Newman, 02/09/18: The Trump administration is testing just how much government debt is too much… “Too much government debt crowds out private lending,” says Joe Brusuelas, chief economist at investing firm RSM. “The private sector has to pay a lot more, it slows the pace of investment and hiring, and you get slower growth. The governing party just added $3 trillion to what the kids are going to have to pay back, and the kids have no idea what’s happening to them.”
The Wall Street Journal, U.S. Stocks Dive as Investors Brace for More Volatility, Akane Otani and Jon Sindreu, 02/08/18: The Dow Jones Industrial Average shed more than 600 points Thursday as government bond yields touched multiyear highs, and investors continued to grapple with a recent pickup in volatility…“I’m definitely in the camp that says this is a healthy correction,” said Joe Brusuelas, chief economist at RSM US LLP, who remains optimistic and hasn’t changed any of his forecasts after the rout.
The Wall Street Journal, Strong Jobs Report Brings a New Problem: Labor Scarcity, Ben Eiser, 02/02/2018: Joseph Brusuelas, the chief economist at RSM US LLP, points to a concern that hasn't gotten much airing recently: are there enough people to fill the open positions in the workforce? Here's what he says in a post-report client note: "With little to no slack left in the economy, the major challenge for both policymakers and firm managers is where will businesses find the workers to meet growing demand in a new economy increasingly organized around science, mathematics and technology in a tightening labor market.
The New York Times, Treasury Rout Hammers Stocks: DealBook Briefing: Wage growth picks up, 02/02/2018: The United States economy added 200,000 jobs last month, above the 180,000 Wall Street economists had expected…Economist reactions: Joseph Brusuelas, RSM US LLP: “Given that there is roughly one worker per job opening in the economy, the narrative inside the labor market is rapidly shifting from that of triumph to that of concern amongst firms of all sizes over how to fill positions among labor scarcity. Due to misaligned immigration policies during a time of economic acceleration and the lack of those that are willing and able to work, firms are about to enter a period of rapid integration of technology as a substitute for labor to avoid growing bottlenecks in production and the provision of services.”
The New York Times, Job and Wage Gains Deliver a Promising Start for the Year, Ben Casselman, 02/02/2018: As the unemployment rate has fallen in recent months and the economy has roared, one central question has bedeviled the American job market: Where is the wage growth?…“People who are marginally employable suddenly become highly employable in a period like this,” said Joseph Brusuelas, chief economist of RSM, a financial consulting firm.
CNN Money, America gets a raise: Wage growth fastest since 2009, Patrick Gillespie, 02/02/2018: America finally got a raise. The U.S. economy added 200,000 jobs in January, and wages grew at the fastest pace in eight years. The unemployment rate stayed at 4.1%, the lowest since 2000, the Labor Department said Friday.… Friday's numbers show 2018 "will be a year of rising wages and the tightest labor market in over a generation," said Joseph Brusuelas, chief U.S. economist at RSM, an accounting and consulting firm.
Washington Post, Two areas where Trump’s economy is better than Obama’s, Heather Long, 02/02/2018: The political spin on the economy right now goes like this: Republicans say the United States was in terrible shape until Donald Trump took office and then the economy went from blah to boom. Democrats say “Thanks, Obama.” They argue former president Barack Obama deserves all the credit for pulling the economy out of the Great Recession, and Trump is just riding his coattails… The reality is somewhere in between. “Trump was dealt a good hand by Obama, but Trump has also kept the momentum going,” says economist Joseph Brusuelas of accounting firm RSM. Brusuelas said he believes it is “juvenile” to have endless debates over who gets credit because “the Federal Reserve and the business cycle have also played large roles in the recovery.”
Off-Price Retailing Magazine (page 61), 2018 Off-Price Retail Predictions, 02/01/2018: How will the evolving buying habits affect the future of off-price retail? … “The way online retailers are set up, the direction and intensity in which artificial intelligence and machine learning is beginning to be integrated into online platforms provides an existential challenge for the off-price industry.” Joe Brusuelas, Chief Economist, RSM US LLP.
CNBC, Fed leaves rates unchanged but gives more aggressive inflation expectations, Jeff Cox, 01/31/2018: In Janet Yellen's final meeting as Fed chair, the central bank decided Wednesday against increasing its benchmark interest rate but indicated it expects inflation pressures to heat up as the year moves on…"We had a hawkish hold here," said Joe Brusuelas, chief economist at RSM. "What that growth forecast implies is there are upward revisions coming to growth and likely a change in the balance of risks due to inflation moving toward the central bank's target."