Macroeconomics basics

One of the methods of analysis that is utilized in the research in the Technical Speculator is Macroeconomics. This "big picture' starting point is vital for a top down review of equities, commodities, currencies and bonds. It lays out the general road map for investment decisions during the next three to five years and offers an important picture that fundamentals or technicals cannot provide.
Finance and market action is based on economics.  Therefore, to properly understand this movement, one must first understand economics.   This discipline,  at its core, is concerned with the production, distribution, trade and consumption of goods and services.   To put this in human terms, we can say that economics is the science that arises out of the interplay between limited resources and unlimited human wants and needs.
  • Macroeconomics is a broad and distant view, and attempts to look at the status of an economy as a whole.  It looks at the overall employment of a general population or overall income of a nation as opposed to a more focused view of a population segment or fundamentals of a specific industry.  This view is helpful because it is only by this kind of analysis that we can see the general trends which a society or nation is following.   Macroeconomics theory and analysis is employed most often by Governments and research-based institutions, which have a responsibility to make policies and decisions which affect an economy as a whole.

    Some terms you may have heard of which concern themselves with the macroeconomics view of the economy are Gross National Product (GNP), Inflation, Consumer Price Index (CPI) and Fiscal Policy.   The meaning of each of these is listed below.

    • Gross National Product – This is the most common measure of economic productivity for an aggregate population.  GNP is defined as the total value of all goods and services produced in final form during a specific period of time (usually 1 year).
    • Inflation – Inflation is defined as a condition of generally increasing prices.  The term used for measuring these prices can vary according to the desires of the individual, government or institution doing the evaluation.
    • Consumer Price Index – The CPI is a measure of how much prices have increased or decreased as compared to a baseline years prices.  The prices used in arriving at this figure are standard goods and services determined by the evaluator.  Thus, the CPI for the United States might vary greatly as compared the CPI for a country from the Middle East.
    • Fiscal Policy – Fiscal Policy is essentially the manner in which a government achieves economic objectives through government spending and taxation.  Fiscal policy is the alternative to Monetary Policy.
    • Monetary Policy – Monetary Policy is essentially the practice of a government managing the supply of money to achieve economic objectives.  The United States uses the Federal Reserve System to either increase or decrease the supply of money, which in turn effects the overall economic environment as a whole.

    The principles of Macroeconomics are important in analyzing and understanding longer-term trends and market direction. 

    A number of factors, known as Macroeconomics principles, are used as indicators of the overall performance of the economy. These principles include such factors as Gross Domestic Product (GDP), Real GDP, the unemployment rate, the inflation rate, and the interest rate. This analysis will define these macroeconomic principles, along with a discussion of the circular flow diagram, which illustrates the interaction of households, government, and businesses.

    There are a number of macroeconomic principles that are used as indicators of the health of a particular nation's economy, including GDP, real GDP, inflation, interest rates, and unemployment rates. Gross Domestic Product is one of the most significant economic indicators of the state of any economy. GDP attempts to measures an economy's total expenditures on newly produced goods and services and the total income earned from their products.

    Macroeconomics examines the economy as a whole to explain broad aggregates and their interactions top down.  Such an approach includes national income and output, the unemployment rate, and price inflation and sub-aggregates like total consumption and investment spending and their components. It also studies effects of monetary policy and fiscal policy.

    Macroeconomics (from prefix "macr(o)-" meaning "large" + "economics") is a branch of economics that deals with the performance, structure, and behaviour of the economy of the entire community, either a nation, a region, or the entire world.  It is the study of all the aspects, namely the behaviour and decision-making, of entire economies.  Macroeconomists study aggregated indicators such as GDP, unemployment rates, and price indices to understand how the whole economy functions. Macroeconomists develop models that explain the relationship between such factors as national income, output, consumption, unemployment, inflation, savings, investment, international trade and international finance.

    While macroeconomics is a broad field of study, there are two areas of research that are symbolic of the discipline.  First, the attempt to understand the causes and consequences of short-run fluctuations in national income (the business cycle), and second, the attempt to understand the determinants of long-run economic growth (increases in national income).  Both of these areas are starting points in the research that is performed at the Technical Speculator.