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Digging beyond the headline data can give a fresh perspective on how the economy is affecting different groups. Our new SF Fed Data Explorer provides an interactive charting tool to learn more about the U.S. labor market.
Sylvain Leduc, executive vice president and director of research at the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, stated his views on the current economy and the outlook as of September 8, 2022.
The COVID-19 pandemic reshaped the way households work. Nearly a third of employees still worked from home part time or full time as of August 2022. This has significantly increased housing demand and is a key factor explaining why U.S. house prices grew 24% between November 2019 and November 2021. Analysis shows that the shift to remote work may account for more than half of overall house price increases and similar increases in rents. This fundamental evolution in work-related housing demand may be important for future house prices.
The U.S. economy came into the pandemic, and looks likely to leave it, on a slow-growth path. The near- term level of potential output has fallen because of shortfalls in labor that should reverse over time. Labor productivity, to a surprising degree, has followed an accelerated version of its Great Recession path with initially strong growth followed by weak growth. But, as of mid-2022, it appears that the overall level of labor and total factor productivity are only modestly affected. The sign of the effect depends on whether we use the strong income-side measures of pandemic output growth or the much weaker expenditure-side measures. There is considerable heterogeneity across industries. We can explain some but not all of the heterogeneity through industry differences in cyclical utilization and off-the-clock hours worked. After accounting for these factors, industries where it is easy to work from home have grown somewhat faster than they did pre-pandemic. In contrast, industries where it is hard to work from home have performed extremely poorly.
The China Cyclical Activity Tracker, China CAT, is an alternative measure of China's economic growth based on research in Fernald, Hsu, and Spiegel (2019).
Cyclical and Acyclical Core PCE Inflation divides components of core personal consumption expenditures according to whether they move in tandem with economic cycles or are independent of the state of the overall economy.
The Daily News Sentiment Index is a high frequency measure of U.S. economic sentiment based on lexical analysis of economics-related news articles.
Inflation Sensitivity to COVID-19 divides core personal consumption expenditures inflation into components that are sensitive and insensitive to the economic disruptions caused by the pandemic.
PCE Inflation Dispersion statistics present a more detailed summary of the personal consumption expenditure price index (PCEPI), a measure of U.S. inflation. Included are measures of the distribution of price changes across categories and diffusion indices.
Supply- versus Demand-Driven PCE Inflation determines the monthly contributions to both headline and core personal consumption expenditures (PCE) inflation from supply-driven versus demand-driven components.
Total Factor Productivity (TFP) presents a real-time, quarterly data series for the U.S. business sector, adjusted for variations in factor utilization—labor effort and capital's workweek.
The Treasury yield premium model decomposes nominal bond yields of various maturities into three components: expectations of the average future short-term interest rate, a term premium, and a model residual.
This page provides estimates of weather-adjusted employment change in the United States for the past six months. The estimates are aggregated from county-level estimates of weather's employment effects, which were derived from a county-level analysis of the short-run effects of unusual weather on employment growth.