Confluence of factors creating financial stress

New York

THIS summer, the US economy enjoyed the easiest financial conditions of the post-crisis era, but those days are probably over.

Financial stress is rising, according to gauges maintained by the Federal Reserve Banks of Chicago and St Louis, and measures compiled by Goldman Sachs Group Inc, Bank of America Merrill Lynch and Bloomberg.

The deterioration reflects tightening credit conditions for companies, higher stock-market volatility and a stronger dollar. Put those elements together and the boost to the economy provided by financial markets is fading.

With the Fed's programme of bond purchases winding down this month, the market's focus shifting toward the prospect of Fed interest-rate increases...

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