It's a highly uncertain time in the global economy with many worried about a recession and others about ongoing inflation. The Fed continues to forecast a soft landing with growth around 1% this year.
What's the corporate world seeing?
Here are some hints:
Bank of America CEO Brian Moynihan said net chargeoffs remained lower than 2019 but cited an "increasingly slowing economic environment"
JPMorgan added $2.3 billion to provision for credit losses in an increase from $1.6 billion in Q3 and sees a “mild recession” in its “central case.”
CEO Jamie Dimon said: "The US economy currently remains strong with consumers still spending excess cash and businesses healthy. However, we still do not know the ultimate effect of the headwinds coming from geopolitical tensions including the war in Ukraine, the vulnerable state of energy and food supplies, persistent inflation that is eroding purchasing power and has pushed interest rates higher, and the unprecedented quantitative tightening. We remain vigilant and are prepared for whatever happens, so we can serve our customers, clients and communities around the world across a broad range of economic environments."
Delta airlines President Glen Hauenstein:
"Momentum continues in 2023 with strong demand trends, and we expect March quarter adjusted revenue to be 14 to 17 percent higher than 2019 on capacity that is 1 percent lower."
The company said domestic corporate bookings were 'steady' at 80% of 2019 and that a 'recent corporate survey' showed 96% of companies said business travel will stay the same or increase in the current quarter.
Wells Fargo CEO CEO Charlie Scharf:
“Rising interest rates drove strong net interest income growth, credit losses have continued to increase slowly but credit quality remained strong, and we continue to make progress on our efficiency initiatives... As we look forward, we are carefully watching the impact of higher rates on our customers and expect to see deposit balances and credit quality continue to return toward pre-pandemic levels."
Citigroup's CFO said it doesn't not expect a simultaneous global downturn and that recent conditions are a bit more favorable in the eurozone. He also said the US consumer remains strong but that its base case was still a mild recession later in 2023 which will be 'mild and manageable'. On inflation he said that core US inflation appears to be very sticky.
Notably, there were no layoff notices anywhere and Citi said it's 'replacing staff where it makes sense in light of the environment'.