Overheated Labor Market? US Capacity Utilization Rises To Near 80% (Fed Too Slow To Remove Stimulus As Supply-Chain Strain Increases)

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by confoundedinterest17

The good news is that US industrial production rose 0.9% in March. The bad news? US capacity utilization rose to 78.3% indicating that the labor market is overheating.

Notice that prior to Covid, The Fed began rising raising its target rate as capacity utilization was increasing towards 80%. But once The Fed Funds Target rate (upper bound) hit 2.50%, capacity utilization started to cool off. Then Covid stuck.

Since Covid struck and The Fed massively expanded its balance sheet, capacity utilization has increased. But this time around, The Fed has been sloth-like in its removal of monetary stimulus.

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Of course, The Fed has been slow to cool inflation which is the highest in 40 years. And supply-chain strains are peaking again (isn’t Mayor Pete in charge of infrastructure?) This is helping to drive prices up.

And don’t forget that REAL average weekly earnings YoY are falling.

Here is Fed Chair Powell explaining how The Fed will withdraw its historic monetary stimulus.

 

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