Economic Outlook 2015 – I

Well, it’s that time – end of one calendar year and, soon, the beginning of another, and that means major banks and financial institutions are releasing their big picture “economic outlooks” for 2015.

Here are two well worth watching.

Jan Hatzius of Goldman Sachs provides an interesting, short discussion of the US economic outlook for 2015.

Huw Pills, also of Goldman Sachs, gives a nuanced discussion of Europe’s more vulnerable economic position for 2015.

For other regions, see Outlook 2015.

Barron’s Outlook 2015: Stick With the Bull focuses on stocks and is based on a survey of investment advisors; its outlook is decidedly upbeat.

Born in March 2009, today’s bull market is the fourth longest in history—and it isn’t about to end, despite last week’s shellacking. That’s the word from Wall Street’s top strategists, who expect the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index to rise 10% in 2015. A gain of that magnitude surely would merit applause, coming atop an 8% rally year to date, not to mention 2013’s 30% advance. Almost six years in, the old bull still seems sprightly….

U.S. stocks are neither cheap nor expensive, based on the market’s current price/earnings ratio of 15.8 times future four-quarter earnings. Few strategists expect the multiple to expand much in the coming year.

“In isolation, U.S. stocks are on the expensive side,” says Jeffrey Knight, head of global asset allocation at Columbia Management. But measured against other financial assets—whether emerging-market equities or developed-market bonds—U.S. shares look strong, he adds.

And, in researching this article, I found Janet Yellen’s Dashboard available from the Brookings Institution website.

A lot of what happens in 2015 has to do with whether, when, and then how much the Fed raises interest rates.

I’m aiming to be as inclusive as I can in putting up these videos of the various celebrity forecasters and their outlook for 2015, so stay tuned.

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