Respondents to MUFG survey don’t see a nationwide recession in the immediate future
However, the survey of market participants did show that inflation has altered expectations enough that the majority now view stagflation-lite as the natural steady state for the economy
New York, NY (August 15, 2023) – Only 35% of market participant respondents to the August 2023 U.S. Macro Strategy Survey conducted by Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (MUFG) believe that the United States economy is on the verge of a recession in the very near-term.
However, nearly 40% believe that while we won’t see a nationwide recession that won’t prevent certain industries from experiencing recession-like conditions ahead. Additionally, if the U.S. economy were to actually fall into a recession, the majority thinks it will start in 1H 2024, the survey showed.
Nearly 70% of the respondents believe that the future natural steady state of U.S. inflation conditions is a world of stagflation-lite, where inflation will be stuck between 2-4% (well above the Federal Reserve's (Fed) target of 2%).
George Goncalves, Head of U.S. Macro Strategy at MUFG, says: “Market participants have been balancing narratives over the past year, ranging from ‘high inflation meets tough Fed policy' versus ‘ultra-loose fiscal policy is acting like an offset to the Fed' all the while risk markets have performed better than expected. This loosening of financial conditions, via tighter credit spreads and a rising stock market, is likely why the recession fears among investors have declined of late.”
The survey also addressed the market sentiment on the Fed plans for rates:
- Respondents were nearly split between July, September, and November 2023 as being the last time the Fed hikes this cycle. However, the majority centered around November as the last hike.
- Meanwhile, 35% of respondents believe the Fed will start cutting rates in the 3rd quarter of 2024.
- Nearly 60% of those who took the survey don’t believe the Fed will end quantitative tightening (QT) once they start cutting rates. And that the earliest that QT may end is at the end of 2024.
You can read more from our U.S. Macro Strategy team here.
About MUFG and MUFG Americas
Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, Inc. (MUFG) is one of the world’s leading financial groups. Headquartered in Tokyo and with over 360 years of history, MUFG has a global network with approximately 2,100 locations in more than 50 countries. MUFG has nearly 160,000 employees and offers services including commercial banking, trust banking, securities, credit cards, consumer finance, asset management, and leasing. The Group aims to be “the world’s most trusted financial group” through close collaboration among our operating companies and flexibly respond to all the financial needs of our customers, serving society, and fostering shared and sustainable growth for a better world. MUFG’s shares trade on the Tokyo, Nagoya, and New York stock exchanges.
MUFG’s Americas operations, including its offices in the U.S., Latin America, and Canada, are primarily organized under MUFG Bank, Ltd. and subsidiaries, and are focused on Global Corporate and Investment Banking, Japanese Corporate Banking, and Global Markets. MUFG is one of the largest foreign banking organizations in the Americas. For locations, banking capabilities and services, career opportunities, and more, visit www.mufgamericas.com.