Headlines discussed at LNWM’s Monday morning briefing:
— The Fed expects 6.5% US GDP growth and 4.5% unemployment in 2021, but will continue stimulus (near zero Fed rate and at least $120 billion in monthly bond purchases).
— US large banks will be required to meet higher reserve requirements as of March 31, when pandemic-related relief expires.
— US retail sales dropped 3% in Feb. (up 7.2% in Jan.) amid freezing weather, but are expected to pick up with $1,400 per person Covid-relief checks.
— US housing starts fell 10% in Feb., also disrupted by freezing weather; softwood lumber prices are up 80% in past year on high demand and supply bottlenecks.
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