Eduardo Porter reports on the economy’s weirdness, explaining why the Federal Reserve is having trouble reading the economic tea leaves in his latest Bloomberg column. Porter also offers his theories of what the next few months of economic activity hold. He writes:
What would you tell builders who started 34,000 fewer housing units in July than in April but employed 36,000 more workers to do it?” Porter writes. “Numbers like these can give economists whiplash, making it harder for them to sketch out a coherent picture of the state of the economy and its direction. … While some of these discrepancies might be dismissed as bad data—an inordinate amount of noise from the momentous shocks produced by the coronavirus pandemic and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine—they might also tell us something real, rejiggering economic relationships in a way that will complicate the policy response.
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