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74 posts on "Expectations"
September 28, 2020

Consumers Expect Modest Increase in Spending Growth and Continued Government Support

Kosar, Pomerantz, and van der Klauuw highlight key findings from the August 2020 SCE Household Spending Survey and the SCE Public Policy Survey.

June 17, 2020

Did State Reopenings Increase Social Interactions?

Social distancing—avoiding nonessential movement and largely staying at home—is seen as key to limiting the spread of COVID-19. To promote social distancing, over forty states imposed shelter-in-place or stay-at-home orders, closing nonessential businesses, banning large gatherings, and encouraging citizens to stay home. Over the course of the last month, virtually all of these states have reopened. However, these reopenings were preceded by a spontaneous increase in mobility and decline in social distancing. Did the reopenings decrease social distancing, or did it ratify ex post what was already going to take place? In this post, we will investigate this question using an event study methodology and demonstrate that reopenings probably have caused a large decline in social distancing, even after accounting for the trends already in place at the time of reopening.

May 26, 2020

Consumers Increasingly Expect Additional Government Support amid COVID-19 Pandemic

The New York Fed’s Center for Microeconomic Data released results today from its April 2020 SCE Public Policy Survey, which provides information on consumers’ expectations regarding future changes to a wide range of fiscal and social insurance policies and the potential impact of these changes on their households. These data have been collected every four months since October 2015 as part of our Survey of Consumer Expectations (SCE). Given the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, households face significant uncertainty about their personal situations and the general economic environment when forming plans and making decisions. Tracking individuals’ subjective beliefs about future government policy changes is important for understanding and predicting their behavior in terms of spending and labor supply, which will be crucial in forecasting the economic recovery in the months ahead.

May 13, 2020

Inflation Expectations in Times of COVID-19

As an important driver of the inflation process, inflation expectations must be monitored closely by policymakers to ensure they remain consistent with long-term monetary policy objectives. In particular, if inflation expectations start drifting away from the central bank’s objective, they could become permanently “un-anchored” in the long run. Because the COVID-19 pandemic is a crisis unlike any other, its impact on short- and medium-term inflation has been challenging to predict. In this post, we summarize the results of our forthcoming paper that makes use of the Survey of Consumer Expectations (SCE) to study how the COVID-19 outbreak has affected the public’s inflation expectations. We find that, so far, households’ inflation expectations have not exhibited a consistent upward or downward trend since the emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the data reveal unprecedented increases in individual uncertainty—and disagreement across respondents—about future inflation outcomes. Close monitoring of these measures is warranted because elevated levels may signal a risk of inflation expectations becoming unanchored.

May 7, 2020

Amid the COVID-19 Outbreak, Consumers Temper Spending Outlook

The New York Fed’s Center for Microeconomic Data released results today from its April 2020 SCE Household Spending Survey, which provides information on consumers’ experiences and expectations regarding household spending. These data have been collected every four months since December 2014 as part of our Survey of Consumer Expectations (SCE). Given the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak, the April survey, which was fielded between April 2 and 30, unsurprisingly shows a number of sharp changes in consumers’ spending behavior and outlook, which we review in this post.

April 16, 2020

How Widespread Is the Impact of the COVID-19 Outbreak on Consumer Expectations?

In a recent blog post, we showed that consumer expectations worsened sharply through March, as the COVID-19 epidemic spread and affected a growing part of the U.S. population. In this post, we document how much of this deterioration can be directly attributed to the coronavirus outbreak. We then explore how the effect of the outbreak has varied over time and across demographic groups.

April 6, 2020

Coronavirus Outbreak Sends Consumer Expectations Plummeting

The March Survey of Consumer Expectations, which was fielded between March 2 and 31, records a substantial deterioration in financial and economic expectations, including sharp declines in household income and spending growth expectations.

March 4, 2020

Searching for Higher Job Satisfaction

Using data from the New York Fed’s Survey of Consumer Expectations, these Liberty Street Economics authors document the heterogeneity in job satisfaction among U.S. workers and in their preferences for various nonwage benefits, and discuss the impact of these preferences on job search behavior.

October 17, 2019

Just Released: Introducing the SCE Public Policy Survey

Kosar, Smith, and van der Klaauw introduce the SCE Public Policy Survey and highlight some of its features.

May 15, 2019

Did Changes in Economic Expectations Foreshadow Swings in the 2018 Elections?

In our previous post, we looked at political polarization in economic expectations based on county-level results in the 2016 presidential election. In this post, we analyze how expectations leading up to and following the 2018 midterm elections evolved based on how districts voted in the House of Representatives elections. Do we see a similar post-election change in political polarization of beliefs when comparing congressional districts in which a Republican won in 2018 with those won by a Democrat? Were observed changes in expectations leading up to the 2018 elections systematically different in areas where the election resulted in a change in the party holding the House seat? We show that economic expectations deteriorated notably between the 2016 and 2018 elections in districts that switched from Republican to Democratic control, compared to districts that remained Republican.

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Liberty Street Economics features insight and analysis from New York Fed economists working at the intersection of research and policy. Launched in 2011, the blog takes its name from the Bank’s headquarters at 33 Liberty Street in Manhattan’s Financial District.

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