So what am I calling for in 2014? As I write in my new weekly commentary, I’m sticking with many of the same themes as last year, with a couple of critical tweaks.
From an Economic Perspective: From an economic perspective, I expect growth to pick up modestly, both in the United States and globally. In 2014, I expect the U.S. economy will edge past the 2% growth rate of the past couple of years and come in around 2.5% to 2.75%. Global growth should accelerate from 3% in 2013 to around 3.5% next year. Despite somewhat faster growth, 2014 is likely to be another year of low inflation in most developed countries.
Although the Federal Reserve (Fed) has begun its long awaited taper, policy remains accommodative and supportive of the economy. Stronger household balance sheets also represent a tailwind.
I also expect an increase in real interest rates thanks to slightly better growth, though the Fed likely keeping the fed funds rate close to zero throughout 2014 should keep the rate rise modest. I would look for an increase of around 0.5% for the 10-year Treasury over the course of next year.