Economic Slowdown

An economic slowdown is a contraction in the economy. This can be viewed by several indicators, including lower gross domestic product (GDP), higher unemployment, lower industrial production, lower business investment, decline in retail sales, and a decrease in corporate profits. Not all of these factors need to be present for an economic slowdown, but these are some of the main indications to watch for regarding the overall health of the economy.


This Could Send Silver Prices Skyrocketing Silver prices are getting hammered, down for the last 13 sessions, which is the precious metal’s longest losing streak since 1950. Currently trading near $14.15 an ounce, silver prices are down 10% year-to-date and…

U.S. economic data is very clear: we’re headed towards a recession, if we’re not already in one. There are three key indicators I closely follow that presently paint a gruesome picture of the U.S. economy: consumer confidence, manufacturing statistics, and…

For months, I have written in these pages about how the slowing global economy would wash ashore to America and infect our own companies. I posted repeated charts in Profit Confidential that showed leading indicators like the Baltic Dry Index…

China is in deep trouble. Economic activity in the second-biggest economy is plunging and it looks like the situation is only going to get worse. The Caixin Flash China General Manufacturing Purchasing Mangers’ Index (PMI), an indicator of manufacturing activity,…

Early this year, I started writing about how falling copper prices were a leading indicator of trouble in the global economy. Since then, we’ve all come to know about the economic slowdown in China. But the further collapse in copper…

In June, retail and food service sales in the U.S. economy declined 0.3% from May. When calculating these sales figures, the Census Bureau looks at 13 different kinds of businesses. In June, seven of those business types reported an outright…

The global economy is headed towards an economic slowdown and it will take U.S. stock prices down with it. The growth rates of major economies are anemic. China is growing at its slowest pace in two decades, putting pressure on…

To gauge activity in the global economy, I follow two indicators very closely: how sales at multinational Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE/CAT) are faring; and trade activity in the global economy. Global Economy Indicator #1 The chart below plots the percentage change…

Last Friday, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that in the month of May, 280,000 jobs were added to the U.S. economy. The unemployment rate was unchanged and stood at 5.5%. (Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, June 5, 2015.)…

With 20 central banks indicating they may lower interest rates even further, a world economic slowdown underway, and bellwether copper prices collapsing, U.S. multinational companies (and their stock prices) will not escape the malaise facing the global economy. Central Banks…

Now that the Dow Jones Industrial Average has fallen 1,035 points (six percent) from its mid-September peak, the question investors are asking is “how far will she go?” For small-cap investors, the drama is greater, as the Russell 2000 Index…