Someone call Superman; markets and macro have officially gone full bizzaro-mode.
Generally, accelerated GDP growth is considered a good thing. It's like a "wow, we made more money than we expected" type of vibe. But since this little thing called inflation showed up, traditional market reactions appear to have done a full 180.
Yesterday, the U.S. Commerce Department came out and corrected itself on Q3 GDP growth. That's one good thing about economists-they love to nerd out and be wrong so much that they tally up the same numbers over and over again until giving a final shrug and saying, "yup, good enough."
And that's exactly what happened yesterday. Originally, the brainiacs at the Commerce Dept. reported third-quarter growth of 2.9%. But now, those same geniuses have bumped up their calculations to show growth of 3.2%, a ~10.3% upward revision.
In terms of GDP and other macro-data measurements, that's a huge revision. And it made markets nervous.
See, markets are smart (sometimes). The fact that GDP is accelerating faster than expected tells investors one thing: JPow's rate hikes ain't going nowhere. Market implied probabilities for a 50 bps hike bunny hopped immediately in reaction, moving to roughly a one-third chance.
To add to the horrors of better-than-expected economic numbers, data on Wednesday showed that consumers are feeling much more confident than they have in months. The index published by an economic think tank, the Conference Board, clocked in at 108.3, a sizable month-over-month jump from November's much more self-conscious 101.4.
But the real problem is that legitimately no one (zero people) seems to care about these ongoing rate hikes JPow has hyped up so much. In a recent survey, CFOs indicated that they care about higher rates almost as little as they do about missing their kid's parent-teacher conferences.
If you're new to the game, just know this is far from normal. Pre-pandemic, the U.S. economy growing faster than expected was almost unheard of. It was like watching an old dog struggle to stand up-you just hope he makes it.
But since getting over a recent illness known as C-19, the American economy is springing like it just won a world war. Let's just hope we don't actually get another one of those (looking at you, Putin).
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