SOURCE: Jerome Levy Forecasting Center

Jerome Levy Forecasting Center

May 24, 2017 09:00 ET

David Levy Says Profits Will Flatten as Fed Tightens in 2017

Tax Reduction Taking Effect in 2018 Would Reestablish Profits Uptrend

MOUNT KISCO, NY--(Marketwired - May 24, 2017) - Economist David Levy, writing in the May issue of The Levy Forecast®, said that "the economy is on track to generate corporate profits that flatten in 2017," with business conditions showing signs of losing steam by year-end.

The chairman of the independent Jerome Levy Forecasting Center LLC ( advised clients that tax cuts taking effect in 2018 would reestablish a profits uptrend next year. He cautioned, however, that if the rise in profits is steep, "markets will find increasing reason to worry about rising wage gains, accelerating inflation and more aggressive Fed rate hikes."

Levy noted that while first-quarter 2017 profits were solid, second-quarter data "could have conflicting messages." He said in the nation's oldest publication devoted to economic analysis, that "data for April and perhaps May will appear consistent with a strengthening economy," but by the time June data are released, "markets may be wondering if the economy is starting to weaken."

As for 2018 tax cuts, he suggested that the half-trillion-dollar amount that had earlier been discussed appears "highly unlikely." Instead, tax cuts in 2018 will more likely amount to approximately $125 billion -- about 7% of current after-tax profits. Such an outcome, said Levy, would be "enough to considerably but not dramatically improve the profits trend and the performance of the economy."

"Business executives and financial markets can pretty much count on tax law being up in the air for most of the year. They can also expect about $125 billion in tax cuts beginning in 2018."

Finally, in a client bulletin published a few days after the release of The Levy Forecast®, Levy discussed the recent days' political drama in Washington, writing, "The headline-making developments in Washington are obviously enormously important for the nation and the world, but they may not make much economic difference over the next year and a half."

About The Jerome Levy Forecasting Center

The Jerome Levy Forecasting Center LLC -- the world leader in applying the macroeconomic profits perspective to economic analysis and forecasting -- conducts cutting edge economic research and offers consulting services to its clients. The goal of the Levy Forecasting Center is to improve its clients' business and investment performance by providing them with powerful insights into economic risks and opportunities -- insights that are difficult or even impossible to achieve with conventional approaches to macroeconomic analysis. Additional information may be found at

Note: The full Levy Forecast and the recent client bulletin are available to the press in PDF format by contacting Andrew Edson & Associates -- or 516 850 3195.

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