We have continued to closely monitor economic indicators for tariff-related impacts on business confidence but up to now it didn’t seem to have affected sentiment. However, that narrative seems to be changing, and we expect the administration will take note.
It’s the tail-end of the first quarter of 2019 earnings reporting season and the results have been better than expected. While corporate earnings growth was up 22 percent in 2018 due in part to tax cuts, this year those same cuts will provide limited benefits and corporate earnings growth is expected to only be up around 5 percent for the full-year 2019.
Although tariffs and trade disputes have been front and center in the news, their impact may not yet be felt by U.S. consumers. If you’ve purchased a washer and dryer recently, it’s likely that you now have firsthand and inadvertent experience bearing their cost.
While the broad market finished the holiday-shortened week positive, healthcare investors weren’t as fortunate. Continued chatter regarding “Medicare for All” as well as a Health and Human Services proposal to ban drug rebates for Medicare are weighing on the sector.
April 15 a.k.a. Tax Day for the United States, is fast approaching. As we near the finish line, many Americans are already seeing the impact; the IRS reported in congressional testimony earlier this month that they have issued 2.2 percent fewer refunds compared to the same time last year.