The Economy in Focus

Fourth Quarter 2019

Executive Summary

January 14, 2020
George Mokrzan, PH.D., Director of Economics

In this edition of the Economy in Focus: 

  • The Huntington Private Bank Economic Forecast – An improving economic environment as policy achievements in 2020 promote long-term economic growth and monetary policy provides added stimulus
  • Our Outlook is for a slow start to the year with economic growth accelerating as the year progresses
  • Consumers Take the Lead in the New Decade – the strongest consumer fundamentals in decades will likely support a solid start to the United States economy in the new decade. Consumers in the Midwest have above average confidence at the start of the new decade.
  • Workers are benefitting from a remarkably low unemployment rate of 3.5% -- the lowest since 1969. Surprisingly strong jobs growth in a low unemployment environment is increasing incomes and economic well-being for many individuals for the first time during the current economic cycle.
  • Aggregate consumer finances are the strongest in decades.
  • Housing markets growing again – Construction activity is the new bright spot in residential investment as low mortgage rates and the strong consumer spur growth. Existing home sales growth has remained relatively modest, but single-family home construction and home improvement spending are picking up broadly.

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This publication contains general information. The views and strategies described may not be suitable for all investors. Any forecasts presented are for illustrative purposes only and are not to be relied upon as advice or interpreted as a recommendation. Individuals should consult with their investment adviser regarding their particular circumstances. This material has been prepared for informational purposes only, and is not intended to provide, and should not be relied on for, accounting, legal or tax advice. Contents herein have been compiled or derived in part from sources believed reliable and contain information and opinions that are accurate and complete. However, Huntington is not responsible for those sources and makes no representation or warranty, express or implied, in respect thereof, and takes no responsibility for any errors and omissions. The opinions, estimates and projections contained herein are as of the date of this publication and are subject to change without notice. This material is not intended as an offer or solicitation for the purchase or sale of any financial instrument. Investing in securities involves risk, including possible loss of principal amount invested. Past performance is no guarantee of future results.

International investing involves special risks including currency risk, increased volatility of foreign securities, political risks, and differences in auditing and other financial standards. Prices of emerging markets securities can be significantly more volatile than the prices of securities in developed countries and currency risk and political risks are accentuated in emerging markets.

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