JPMorgan Chase boss Jamie Dimon’s view of a looming “hurricane” for the US economy has some notable dissenters, including his bank’s own chief economist Bruce Kasman, who sees clearer skies.
Kasman said Monday that there is “no real reason to be worried about a recession,” arguing economic growth will continue in the months ahead – albeit at a slower pace due to high inflation that has rattled businesses and households.
“I think what we’re going to see is growth continue to be on the softer side, but growth continue to show resilience,” Kasman told Bloomberg.
“We don’t see a near-term recession, we see a global economy which actually does okay in the second half of the year, with the US slowing and the rest of the world doing somewhat better,” he added.
The JPMorgan economist added that the private sector remains “very resilient” to inflation-related shocks, with “the health of households and corporates being quite remarkable right now.”
Kasman’s remarks stood In sharp contrast to those of his boss – who warned just last week that the Federal Reserve’s plan to aggressively tighten monetary policy to cool inflation and the Russia-Ukraine war were creating unprecedented conditions for investors.
“It’s a hurricane. Right now, it’s kind of sunny, things are doing fine, everyone thinks the Fed can handle this,” Dimon said during a conference sponsored by AllianceBernstein, according to Bloomberg.
“That hurricane is right out there, down the road, coming our way,” he added. “We just don’t know if it’s a minor one or Superstorm Sandy or Andrew or something like that. You better brace yourself.”
Stocks have been shaky in recent weeks as investors react with skepticism about the Fed’s ability to aggressively hike interest rates in order to lower prices without triggering an economic recession. Dimon is one of several figures who have given dire warnings about the potential financial consequences.
Kasman acknowledged that Dimon has his “own views” on the economic outlook and that the bank’s leadership was “much more clear-cut about understanding dynamics in financial conditions and how they were going to impact on the macro economy,” according to Bloomberg.
“We see the economy slowing. We don’t see a financial storm coming right now. We think the economy is going to avoid recession as we go through the rest of this year.”
Kasman’s view is shared by some analysts at Goldman Sachs, who told clients in a note Monday that the economy would slow in the months ahead but likely avoid a recession, Business Insider reported.
The Goldman analysts pointed to the likelihood of easing supply chain bottlenecks and increased labor force participation alleviating some inflationary pressure on the economy.
Bank of America CEO Brian Moynihan also downplayed Dimon’s warning of an economic “hurricane” during a conference last week, arguing that elements of the economy remain strong despite the “tough job” facing the Fed.
“The best thing about the tough job is the part that makes it tough is actually a good thing — a low unemployment and good wage growth and good consumer spending,” Moynihan said. “Those are good things.”
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