State of Banks in 2022

OCC (Office of Comptroller of Currency) which supervises national banks and agencies of foreign banks in US released their semi-annual risk report last week. The report presents key issues facing banks that “pose threats to the the safety and soundness of banks and their compliance with applicable laws and regulations”. The report presents an optimistic message – while the risk of downside growth is increasing due to tightening financial conditions and geopolitical uncertainty the banks continue to be financially strong having navigated the pandemic and are well capitalized to face the economic headwinds.

IMF Global Outlook – 2021

This week, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) released their latest forecast which predicts that world GDP will grow by 5.5% in 2021 against a net decline of -3.5% seen in 2020. IMF foresees that first half of 2021 will see softer growth and the growth momentum will increase in the second half. The rebound in 2021 is based on the twin-punch of a ‘vaccine-powered’ recovery coupled with policy support in large economies.

Looking at the US Aug Unemployment report

The US unemployment report for Aug showed the 2nd biggest monthly drop in US unemployment after a 2.2% reduction that occurred in June 2020. However there are a three caveats to the impressive rebound; biggest increase was driven by temporary hiring for 20202 Census and the permanent job losses continued to rise while the number of long term unemployed hardly moved.

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