scorecardMarket veteran Ed Yardeni shares his recession odds and geopolitical risks: 'The world just isn't a safe place these days'
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Market veteran Ed Yardeni shares his recession odds and geopolitical risks: 'The world just isn't a safe place these days'

Phil Rosen   

Market veteran Ed Yardeni shares his recession odds and geopolitical risks: 'The world just isn't a safe place these days'
Stock Market4 min read
Ed Yardeni, President of Yardeni Research    Ed Yardeni

Happy Saturday, readers. I'm senior reporter Phil Rosen. Markets are closed today, but I'm eager to welcome you to a special weekend edition of the Opening Bell newsletter.

Today features my conversation with top strategist and economist, Ed Yardeni, on his recession outlook and what he sees as the US economy's biggest risks for 2023.

And below the Q&A, I've rounded up the most fascinating weekend reads from across Insider's Pulitzer Prize-winning newsroom, just for you.

Let's get started.

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Ed Yardeni is the president of Yardeni Research. The conversation is lightly edited for length and clarity.

Phil Rosen: What are the biggest risks the US economy is facing right now?

Ed Yardeni: For the past year or so, the main issue for the US economy is inflation. Inflation was deemed by the Fed, and to a large extent by most people, as being transitory.

Back in 2021, when it first started to rear its ugly head, and it kind of made sense, we had a tremendous demand shock as a result of the excessively stimulative fiscal and monetary policies back in 2020.

And geopolitical risk I'd say is probably number two. The world just isn't a safe place these days. We've got things boiling in Russia and Ukraine, things coming to a boil in China. There's a Cold War between the United States and China that's been heating up. Iran is experiencing social turmoil.

If inflation actually goes up because of another round of geopolitical stress and supply chains and so on, then clearly the Fed would have to raise interest rates further.

The recession warning of inverted yield curves has been flashing. What is your recession outlook?

EY: This time around yield curves may not be predicting a credit crunch in a recession, which is what it did in the past quite brilliantly. This time around, the credit system is in much better shape, I think the economy is much more resilient to tighter monetary policy, and that we're likely to get a soft landing in which inflation moderates.

Having said that, I'm giving 60% to a soft landing, and 40% to a hard landing next year.

How do you think the Fed will adjust monetary policy moving forward?

EY: They can either continue to tighten until they cause a recession, but that's not my most likely scenario. I'll give it a 40%. That would mean they've concluded the only way to bring inflation down is with a recession.

Another scenario is that they're close to the so-called terminal rate, but will keep it there for most of next year, and that there won't be actual easing until 2023, 2024.

Then, of course, there's the possibility that all hell breaks loose and inflation remains persistent, there's geopolitical issues, and we find that the amount of tightening that's occurred so far that all, one way or another, add up to a pretty nasty recession.

I think either rates are going to go higher, causing a recession, which would bring interest rates down next year. Or else it's going to be a scenario where rates are going to just go sideways for a while and that'll relieve a lot of inflationary pressures and move through with a soft landing.

What's your stock market outlook for 2023?

EY: I think earnings are going to grow. I don't see the freefall in earnings that we got during the lockdowns or great financial crisis. The problem is valuation multiples are still high.

But I do think we'll be making new highs by the end of next year, something around 4,800 [for the S&P 500]. But I think the valuation multiples are going to continue to be problematic in terms of getting a rip-roaring momentum, bull market.

Read the full story here.

What did you think of Yardeni's insights?

Let me know on Twitter (@philrosenn) or email me (

Here's what else to read this weekend:

Chinese President Xi Jinping buttons his jacket
Xi Jinping showed loyal support to Vladimir Putin amid Russia's invasion of Ukraine.      Kevin Frayer/Getty Images

1. Employees are using a controversial tactic to force their bosses to give them a raise. On the back of the pandemic sea change and so-called Great Resignation, employers are increasingly seeing staffers use other job offers as a bargaining chip. As one recruiting exec put it: "Everybody's moved from being a franchise player to a free agent."

2. A secret 9/11 memo revealed the warnings that former President Bush tuned out before the attack. In 2004, Bush hosted a meeting with the 9/11 Commission, and the words spoken in that room remained secret for nearly two decades — until now.

3. President Xi Jinping is facing his first real test. China's leader is facing angry citizens, a crumbling economy, and a housing sector in shambles. But seeing the limits of his power will only make him more paranoid and defiant than ever before.

4. This real estate investor who retired in his 40s doubled his portfolio during the 2008 housing crash. He shared what he learned from investing in a severe downturn and why it's best to focus on cash flow instead of home appreciation. Plus, he broke down his four best investing tips for 2023.

5. Rising stars are transforming how homes are sold and offices are built at firms like BlackStone, Redfin, and CBRE. This group of 30 young professionals, all age 35 and under, are innovating and disrupting. Meet Insider's third annual slate of emerging talent in real estate.

Keep up with the latest markets news throughout your day by checking out The Refresh from Insider, a dynamic audio news brief from the Insider newsroom. Listen here.

Curated by Phil Rosen in New York. Feedback or tips? Tweet @philrosenn or email

Edited by Max Adams (@maxradams) in New York and Hallam Bullock (@hallam_bullock) in London.