Gluskin Sheff chief economist David Rosenberg says the odds of the economy slipping into another recession are “minimal,” and isn’t worried if the market takes a breather this year.
A flat or inverted yield curve is an economic warning sign, Rosenberg said, but the positive slope now “is telling you odds of recession are minimal.”
The widely followed Rosenberg famously turned bullish last year after being in the bearish camp for years.
He made his most recent remarks at the Altegris Investments strategic investment conference in San Diego on Wednesday, with a presentation titled, “Lament of a Former Bear.”
This year will be a stock-pickers market, he said. “That’s perfectly normal if the market just sits there while the fundamentals catch up. But it will not be a bear market. … The cyclical bull market is intact even if the market is flat.”
Bear markets occur when the Federal Reserve tightens and the economy goes into a recession, Rosenberg said. But the Fed has made clear that it won’t raise rates soon and wants to see more inflation, so easy-money policies will prevail.
“You can’t bet against central banks,” he said.
Many people are worried about soft housing data, but Rosenberg dismissed those concerns.
Housing is “a mid-cycle [economic] indicator,” he said. “It’s perfectly normal at this stage of the cycle to actually start handing the baton off to the consumer. That’s what we see in the data. It’s roughly the fourth inning of this ballgame.”
Rosenberg’s bullish outlook contrasted with the much more negative view held by Richard Yamarone, senior economist at Bloomberg Economics, who feels the economy could be close to falling victim to another downturn.