2012 Mid-Year Outlook
In our 2012 Outlook, we predicted that finding a middle ground, or Meeting in the Middle, was going to be key for growth in the markets and economy. In particular, we highlighted a key characteristic of this year: soft sentiment and hard data find middle ground, meaning that we see a convergence between facts and feelings. So far, this has been reflected in economic and market data. Notably, at this year’s midpoint, the gap between consumer confidence and leading economic indicators has narrowed about halfway.
However, when divergent rational facts and emotional feelings attempt to converge, it usually comes with some ups and downs. We experienced this in the first half of 2012 with large upswings and dramatic downdrafts in market performance. We anticipate that this volatility will persist for the rest of 2012 — though it hopefully mellows a bit as we get some clarity around the November elections. Read the full PDF.