Fed Up, Up, Up
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You made it to Thursday!
All eyes were on the US Federal Reserve this week, which raised interest rates another 0.75% on Wednesday in response to the continued stream of economic data (particularly inflation data) that is keeping them up at night. Time will tell whether the move has the intended impact of slowing inflation, but this morning’s news that GDP (read: economic activity) fell for the second straight quarter probably did not give too many economists much comfort. One thing that was clear: this week’s news did nothing to halt use of the “R” word on Wall Street or Main Street.
Also under the microscope this week: big tech and big oil. Alphabet and Microsoft both announced their quarterly earnings on Tuesday, showing overall slowdowns in revenue growth. But, the reports were better than investors feared and shared a common bright spot — both businesses are seeing strong growth from cloud services — which they expect to remain stable. Watch for earnings to come from Apple and Amazon later today, which may offer more clues as to what’s ahead for the tech sector. It is a very different story on the oil front, with Europe’s top producers Shell and Total announcing record-breaking quarters. Expect more news as oil giants like Exxon and Chevron report earnings before the week is out.
Looking for a bit of good news? Millennials’ average net worth more than doubled during the pandemic. (This definitely had some of us looking around saying “Really”?!?) If you’re among those who saw your assets jump over the last two years, 🎉. We hope you find inspiration in this week’s newsletter to invest that capital in ways that align with your values.
Have a great weekend, and we’ll see you in August.
News you can use
- Could ESG and sustainability take a backseat during an economic crisis? Sustainability initiatives will be among the first investment areas to be cut if corporate margins are squeezed, according to a new survey of CFOs and CEOs, and we’re already seeing an uptick of closures in the ESG ETF space. Time will tell, as some are talking about how the closer scrutiny the sector is receiving will clear out some of the bad 🍎🍎, and companies considering cuts might want to note that investors directed a net $528 million to sustainable funds in June, even as overall US fund flows were negative.
- Patagonia Works, Ben and Jerry's, TOMS, Sunrise Banks, and Revolution Foods are among the businesses that made B Lab’s 2022 Best for the World list. The global nonprofit, which has certified 5,000 mission-focused companies as B Corps, names the top performers each year. Most are privately owned, but the list could help you decide where to shop or bank sustainably. Publicly listed B Corps include Appharvest, Vital Farms, Allbirds, and Coursera. Ben & Jerry’s is a subsidiary of Unilever.