The economy is booming and everyone should enjoy it. The American economy is benefitting from tremendous amounts of pent-up demand and in some of the hardest-hit industries’ activity is beginning to tick back up above 2019 levels. Along with that boom, there are clear signs of inflation and concerns about overheating. Even Janet Yellen seemed concerned for a few hours last week.
It’s hard to remember that there’s still a pandemic going on. Vaccination rates have increased and it looks like we may be on the cusp of a roaring 20s. Consumers are healthy and eager to make up for lost time–booking travel and eating out. Offices will probably re-open by the end of summer but working from home is likely to remain an option.
Succinct Summary: Companies are reporting signs of improvement in the economy. But the rebound is coming off such a low base that these numbers would still be considered very bad in any other environment. The duration of this rebound will depend heavily on whether or not there’s a second wave of infections. Still, even without the virus it probably will take the economy a long time to recover from such a severe shock.
On an industry basis: private capital markets are searching for price levels; consumers are dreaming of the future; tech is chugging along; and the industrial/energy economy is feeling immense pain.