Broker Check
Economic Update April 2022

Economic Update April 2022

April 20, 2022

At PalomarWealth, it is important to us that you are well informed about what is happening in the markets. Here are a few of the key topics of conversation that we feel deserve the most attention this month. If you have any questions or would like to continue the conversation, let us know, and we appreciate the opportunity.

It’s déjà vu all over again. Inflation, rates, sentiment, and the invasion of Ukraine highlight markets and economics.

Unsurprisingly, Inflation continued to push higher in March with prices rising 8.5% over the prior year1, coming in close to expectations. It’s anticipated the Fed will weigh a larger increase in rates to bring inflation more quickly under control, creating substantial volatility in equity markets so far this month. Compared to February, prices for energy and services rose, while the prices for goods fell for the first time in a year.

Overall interest rates continue to rise, not only putting pressure on general bond prices but also causing mortgage rates to quickly rise. According to Bankrate, the average rate on a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage exceeded 5% in early April, the first time since 2011. Do we believe this will cause a housing bubble like in 2008? No, but it could help settle demand and help ease inflation in real estate, raw materials, and related home goods.

Consumer sentiment, which has been in the doldrums lately, jumped to a three-month high in April, according to the University of Michigan’s Consumer Sentiment Index. Attitudes toward the future leapt by the most since 2006, supported by higher wages and expecting longer-term price increases to fall from their elevated levels. Despite this bit of good news, the trend in sentiment is clearly negative.

Prior to the jump in sentiment, overall retail sales in March rose 0.5%2. Surging gas prices pushed up gas station sales and helped mask falling sales in vehicles and in e-commerce, which are two of the largest spending categories in the Census Bureau’s report. Despite average US gas prices slowly coming down from their recent peak in mid-March3, energy prices and increasing costs elsewhere in the economy may be taking a bite out of consumers’ appetite to continue spending on goods and services.

The bottom line: At the risk of being repetitive, inflation continues to be the primary story, followed by the war in Ukraine. As the world settles in for a protracted period of geopolitical saber-rattling, the Fed has the task of reducing US demand for goods. The upcoming Fed meeting in May will provide deep insight into how worried the Fed is about inflation. Until then, markets may still act volatility based on the latest headline or data release.




  1. US Bureau of Labor Statistics,
  2. US Census Bureau,
  3. Bloomberg Intelligence 


The material presented includes information and opinions provided by a party not related to Thrivent Advisor Network. It has been obtained from sources deemed reliable; but no independent verification has been made, nor is its accuracy or completeness guaranteed. The opinions expressed may not necessarily represent those of Thrivent Advisor Network or its affiliates. They are provided solely for information purposes and are not to be construed as solicitations or offers to buy or sell any products, securities, or services. They also do not include all fees or expenses that may be incurred by investing in specific products. Past performance is no guarantee of future results. Investments will fluctuate and when redeemed may be worth more or less than when originally invested. You cannot invest directly in an index. The opinions expressed are subject to change as subsequent conditions vary. Thrivent Advisor Network and its affiliates accept no liability for loss or damage of any kind arising from the use of this information.   

Investment advisory services offered through Thrivent Advisor Network, LLC., a registered investment adviser and a subsidiary of Thrivent.  Clients will separately engage a broker-dealer or custodian to safeguard their investment advisory assets.  Review the Thrivent Advisor Network ADV Disclosure Brochure and Wrap-Fee Program Brochure for a full description of services, fees, and expenses. Thrivent Advisor Network LLC advisors may also be registered representatives of a broker-dealer to offer securities products. 

This communication may include forward-looking statements. Specific forward-looking statements can be identified by the fact that they do not relate strictly to historical or current facts and include, without limitation, words such as “may,” “will,” “expects,” “believes,” “anticipates,” “plans,” “estimates,” “projects,” “targets,” “forecasts,” “seeks,” “could” or the negative of such terms or other variations on such terms or comparable terminology. These statements are not guarantees of future performance and involve risks, uncertainties, assumptions, and other factors that are difficult to predict and that could cause actual results to differ materially. 

Index Benchmarks presented within this report may not reflect factors relevant for your portfolio or your unique risks, goals or investment objectives. Past performance of an index is not an indication or guarantee of future results. It is not possible to invest directly in an index. 

The Michigan Consumer Sentiment Index (MCSI) is a monthly survey of consumer confidence levels in the United States conducted by the University of Michigan. 

PalomarWealth is a part of Thrivent Advisor Network, LLC ("Thrivent"), a Registered Investment Adviser ("RIA"), located in the State of Minnesota. Thrivent provides investment advisory and related services for clients nationally. Thrivent will maintain all applicable registration and licenses as required by the various states in which Thrivent conducts business, as applicable. Thrivent renders individualized responses to persons in a particular state only after complying with all regulatory requirements, or pursuant to an applicable state exemption or exclusion.  

Advisory Persons of Thrivent provide advisory services under a practice name or “doing business as” name or may have their own legal business entities. However, advisory services are engaged exclusively through Thrivent Advisor Network, LLC, a registered investment adviser. PalomarWealth and Thrivent Advisor Network, LLC are not affiliated companies. Information in this message is for the intended recipient[s] only. Please visit our website for important disclosures.