Chief Economist

About This Blog

An irreverent take on the macroeconomic environment and real estate capital markets. Dr Sam Chandan is President and Chief Economist of Chandan Economics and a professor in the associated faculty of real estate at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. On Twitter @SamChandan.
  • Declining Labor Participation Remains a Key Qualifier

    The March employment report surprised to the downside. The US economy added 126,000 jobs during the month, the smallest net increase in two years. Beyond the headline, the persistent decline in labor participation remains one of the major qualifiers of the jobs recovery.

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  • Threat of Deflation

    The sharp decline in oil explains a great deal about the direction of prices, but it is not the whole story. Narrower measures of core inflation point to underlying weakness in demand that will constrain monetary policy (and real estate) should it persist.

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  • Waiting for Wage Growth

    The December jobs report capped a banner year for the US labor market. Still, the momentum remains uneven absent a meaningful acceleration in earnings growth.

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  • Will a Shift in the Senate Alter Our Economic Outlook

    On balance, we do not expect a revision to our economic outlook on Wednesday morning. Our baseline forecast remains fairly reserved no matter who holds a slight advantage in the Senate.

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  • Stagnant Wages Qualify Stronger Jobs Report

    There was plenty to cheer in last Friday’s employment report. But even a cursory review of the data reveals improvements that are uneven along dimensions that matter for real estate.

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  • As Lending Rises, Procyclical Features Reemerge

    Across multifamily, commercial real estate, and construction loans, banks' net lending in the second quarter increased by more than $100 billion from a year earlier.

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  • Market Sentiment Runs Ahead of Growth Outlook

    Is the US economy on a roll? Sentiment in the commercial real estate market – as well as the direction of underwriting standards – suggests exactly that. The data does not.

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  • Bank Default Rate Declines as Lending Rises

    The default rate across banks' multifamily and commercial real estate mortgages declined to 1.6 percent in the first quarter. In the case of the former, the default rate is now at its lowest point since before the financial crisis and recession.

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  • The Next Recession

    Nearly five years into the current expansion, history suggests many of today's originations will mature in recession.

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  • The Fed Should Consider a New Playbook

    Does the economy need more Fed support? If the objective is creating jobs, the recent ineffectiveness of monetary policy is at issue.

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