Whatever the reason, we are trying hard to understand markets, but right now markets just don’t seem to care. The disconnect between the ebullience of equities and gloomy economists could not be starker. The recent coincidence of a return to the black for the S&P and the gloomiest ever predictions from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), World Bank and the Federal Reserve seem to emphasise that point nicely. Lots of shouting but no listening. Both parties can’t be right, so for now, they are going their own separate ways.
If you search songs about empathy online, there aren’t many of them. Alanis Morrissette has a go, but it is peppered with the perpendicular pronoun. In fact, that seems to be a feature of most love songs too. Our title song personifies that. The lyrics reveal nothing about what Meatloaf’s imagined interlocutor might feel about having just two of her three boxes checked! We can empathise.
We saw the deep economic dislocation that would occur as a result of COVID-19 lockdown measures, the likely quantum of policy response, but not the seemingly perverse reaction of equity markets (Figure 1). It does not feel good at all. Two out of three is not enough! We strive for better.