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Diving into Macro Fundamentals and More to Help Investors Navigate June

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This is an excerpt from our most recent Economic Outlook report. To access the full PDF, please click here.

Four times a year, Zacks does a survey of Chief Investment Officers (CIOs).

CIOs get asked 14 questions. All questions tap into their 12-month look-ahead views: On numerous stock ETFs, broad bond classes, and key macro fundamentals.

For this Zacks Monthly Econ topic, I share the latest June 2023 results. This amounts to a Midyear 2023 update. That means it looks ahead to 2H of 2023 and 1H of 2024 now.

Keep in mind: CIOs manage money. They are conservative, and apply long-term investing tactics.

Here is some of what these CIOs are thinking about on select macro fundamentals…

CIOs think that the core CPI goes down. But not as low as the bond markets think.

With the Core CPI at 4.0% to 4.5% or 4.5% to 5.0%, the U.S. Treasury yield curve stays inverted, as they see a Fed Funds rate at 4.5% to 5.0%, but a 5-yr Treasury at 3.5% to 4.5%, and a 10-yr Treasury at 3.5% to 4.0%, with 30-yr Fixed Mortgage rates “even higher.

Consult the following Q11, Q12, and Q13 results for all of the other asset class details.

Q11 – Interest Rates, 12 months

Core CPI at 4.0% to 4.5% or 4.5% to 5.0%. Fed Funds rate at 4.5% to 5.0%. 5-yr Treasury at 3.5% to 4.5%, 10-yr Treasury at 3.5% to 4.0%. 30-yr Fixed Mortgage rates “even higher.

Q12 – Corporate Bonds, 12 months

IG –credit spreads: remain unchanged or expand were equal.

HY –credit spreads: expand

Q13 – Asset Classes

Bullish on WTI oil, Bullish on Commodities. Bullish on Gold. Market on Munis.

We conclude by asking CIOs for specific investment themes.

Ones that interest them -- in the next 12 months.

Q14 – Themes

Basic necessities, energy and food. Infrastructure spending. Energy and mining.

Now let’s look ahead with Zacks June 2023 Forecasts.

+1.3% Q1-23 growth and a +2.2% Q2-23 outlook got incorporated into our latest forecasts.

In May 2023, the London economist/bank consensus shows a +4.2% CPI y/y rate across 2023 and a +2.6% rate in 2024. Consensus implies steady, tight FOMC rates across 2023.

Conference Board and Philly outlooks? U.S. growth shifts to positive growth in Q1-24.

Soft U.S. job adds -coming with soft GDP growth quarters- supplies the worry on U.S. aggregate demand. Does U.S. jobs demand fall (+280K to +44K) in Q3-23? Philly consensus says YES. Zacks call remains for later on. The consensus U.S. verdict shows a 3.7% household unemployment rate for 2023.

For real GDP growth updates? Zacks mixes four outside outlooks.


  • The June 1st Atlanta Fed GDPNow forecast shows +2.0% growth for Q2-23.


  • May 10th Conference Board has -0.6% Q2-23 GDP growth and -1.6% Q3-23 growth.


  • May ’23 Consensus Econ. GDP growth was +1.1% for 2023 and +0.6% in 2024.


  • Q2-23 Philly Fed economist consensus showed Q2-23 at +1.0% real GDP growth, Q3-23 at +0.6%, Q4-23 at -0.0%, Q1-24 at +1.0%, and Q2-24 at +2.5%.  

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