The 10-Minute Take

"The 10-Minute Take", a new podcast series dedicated to providing the point of view of market experts on events unfolding around the globe.

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What's Ahead for the Loonie

Published May 22, 2020

Featuring George Davis, RBC Capital Markets’ Chief Technical Strategist in Foreign Exchange Trading

The loonie has defied expectations during the recent rout in oil markets, hitching its wagon to another driver. Move over crude, hello equities. But the road ahead still has bumps, with implications for USD/CAD foreign exchange. How will extended travel restrictions affect cross-border investments? And what could snowbird investors expect from the U.S. Fed? George Davis, Chief Technical Strategist in Foreign Exchange Trading at RBC Capital Markets, joins us with the outlook on the Canadian dollar.

Why Gold is Glittering While Markets Churn

Published May 20, 2020

Featuring Chris Louney, RBC Capital Markets' Commodity Strategist

Gold prices have surged during the COVID crisis, driven by low rates and aggressive policy measures to stimulate the economy and investors looking to hedge risks in the market – which explains why gold is staying high even as equities rally. Will the bulls of bullion continue to prevail? And what impact might the eventual recovery have? Chris Louney, RBC Capital Markets’ Commodity Strategist, joins us with the outlook on gold.

The Road to Recovery for Canada’s Provinces

Published May 15, 2020

Featuring RBC Senior Economist Robert Hogue

The bad news: COVID-19’s brutal toll on provincial economies is worse than we previously anticipated. The provinces are expected to contract between 4.8% and 11.2% in 2020—by far the deepest recessions we’ve ever seen. The good news is that we're heading into the recovery phase. Barring any setbacks, the worst is behind us. We'll generally see a slow start, followed by a meaningful rebound in activity over the second half of the year continuing into 2021 – with each province going at its own pace. RBC Senior Economist Robert Hogue joins us for a special series on Canada’s regional economic outlooks.

Can Business Stimulus Hasten the "Swoosh" Recovery?

Published May 13, 2020

Featuring Craig Wright, RBC's Chief Economist

Hopes for a V-shaped recovery – a short, sharp collapse followed by a bounce-back to pre-crisis activity – have been replaced by expectations of a “swoosh.” That is, a large drop followed by a slow incline. To bend the curve, Canadian policy makers have focused the latest round of relief on business. But how effective can these new measures be when much of the economy remains closed? Craig Wright, RBC's Chief Economist, joins us with his outlook for the private sector and a broader recovery.

What a Market Recovery Can Look Like

Published May 11, 2020

Featuring Lori Calvasina, RBC Capital Markets Head of U.S. Equity Strategy

The U.S. equities market has rebounded upwards of 30% from its low in March, driven by plenty of good news and investor optimism. But the road ahead is full of curves and unknowns that could slow the momentum or worse. Looking in the rearview mirror, previous recessions offer a roadmap to guide the recovery journey. Lori Calvasina, RBC Capital Markets' Head of U.S. Equity Strategy, joins us to share lessons from past market downturns.

China's Economic Recovery Still a Long Way Off, Despite Official Reports

Published May 8, 2020

Featuring Leland Miller, CEO of China Beige Book International

China has touted economic re-opening as the central government’s triumph over the COVID-19 virus. But though firms are back to work and factories are up and running, growth hasn’t recovered. In fact, privately gathered data suggest China’s economy continues to struggle. Can the government do more than reopen factories? And what will it take to get Chinese consumers shopping, travelling, and spending again? Leland Miller, CEO of China Beige Book International, joins us our podcast to explain what the official numbers don’t.

What we can learn from Australia’s approach to the crisis

Published May 4, 2020

Featuring Su-Lin Ong, RBC Capital Markets’ Managing Director and Chief Economist for Australia & New Zealand

Australia is flattening the curve of COVID-19 and moving to reopen its economy—slowly. Thanks to a focus on testing and tracing, authorities are gaining confidence to start easing restrictions, but not without some conditions and challenges still ahead. Su-Lin Ong joins us with the details on Australia’s COVID exit strategy and economic outlook.

How oil producers can help resolve their own crisis

Published April 29, 2020

Featuring Greg Pardy, RBC’s Co-Head of Global Energy Research

North American producers have struggled to match the historic collapse in demand. One option is “shut and swap” – an idea that would see governments buy future production so oil companies can “smooth” their revenue and plan output with more confidence. Do Ottawa and Washington have the political stomach for that kind of risk? Greg Pardy, RBC’s Co-Head of Global Energy Research, joins our podcast to share his proposal.

Why the world’s biggest banks are stable in this crisis – so far

Published April 27, 2020

Featuring Gerard Cassidy, RBC Capital Markets’ Head of U.S. Bank Equity Strategy

The big U.S. banks have set aside massive loan loss provisions as they prepare for the worst of the COVID crisis. European banks begin to report earnings this week, and are expected to do the same. Yet markets have not lost confidence in the world’s biggest banks the way they did in the global financial crisis. Gerard Cassidy, RBC Capital Markets’ Head of U.S. Bank Equity Strategy, joins us on the podcast.

Why ESG is outperforming the market

Published April 22, 2020

Featuring Lindsay Patrick, RBC Capital Markets’ Head of Sustainable Finance

On the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, sustainability may seem like the last thing on a troubled market’s mind. And yet, through the crisis, ESG-focussed investments have outperformed the market, and may be positioned to excel as governments design the biggest stimulus investments in history. Lindsay Patrick, RBC Capital Markets' Head of Sustainable Finance, joins us to discuss how sustainability will shape the post-crisis rebuild.

What the collapse of crude prices means for the oil market

Published April 21, 2020

Featuring Michael Tran, RBC Capital Markets’ Energy Strategist

For the first time, the price of West Texas Intermediate on futures markets plunged into negative territory. It's the market sending oil producers a message: "We're awash in oil. Please shut in production." RBC Capital Markets’ Energy Strategist Michael Tran joins us on the podcast to explain what it means for global markets as well as Canadian production.

Quiet Resilience in Canada's Housing Markets

Published April 16, 2020

Featuring Robert Hogue, RBC Senior Economist

Wednesday saw the release of startling economic numbers, particularly Canada's GDP down 9% for March. That's not the only figure in decline - national home sales are also down 14. Prices, however, have remained relatively stable as supply dropped in proportion to demand. RBC Senior Economist Robert Hogue joins our podcast to discuss the outlook on housing.

How Big Tech is using a downturn to its advantage

Published April 14, 2020

Featuring Mark Mahaney, RBC Capital Markets’ Internet Analyst

Amazon’s stock surged this week, hitting a new all-time high on Tuesday. The latest spark: Online shopping for basics like groceries is so intense that Amazon announced plans to hire 75,000 more workers, on top of the 100,000 it’s already added in the crisis. And it’s not the only one thriving in the face of dramatic shifts in consumer behaviour. Mark Mahaney, RBC Capital Markets’ Internet analyst, joins our podcast to talk about how the pandemic is leading to enduring changes in the way we shop – and how other Big Tech players like Google and Facebook may fare.

A Downturn Like No Other

Published April 9, 2020

Featuring Craig Wright, SVP and Chief Economist, RBC

This may be the darkest quarter on record for the Canadian economy. Our consumer-driven economy could make a rebuild even tougher, as we all tend to our wounds and avoid public places for months to come. As GDP declines and unemployment reaches unprecedented levels this quarter, it may be hard to spot silver linings. But come 2021, low interest rates and pent-up demand should get growth headed back to normal. RBC's Chief Economist Craig Wright joins our podcast to discuss his latest macro forecast.

How Donald Trump’s Fed became the world’s central bank

Published April 9, 2020

Featuring Elsa Lignos, RBC Capital Markets Global Head of FX Strategy

Global markets have rarely seen the volatility they endured in March, but in recent days a degree of calm has returned. One big reason is the Fed’s quiet role in extending liquidity lifelines to countries around the world, essentially doing for them what central banks everywhere are trying to do for their own economies. Elsa Lignos, RBC’s Global Head of FX Strategy, explains how the Fed restored temporary calm – and what lies ahead for markets that are still in the depths of a global pandemic.

A COVID cure? Watch for wishful thinking

Published April 7, 2020

Featuring Brian Abrahams, RBC’s Co-Head of Biotechnology Research

The race is on for vaccines and treatments for COVID-19. Brian Abrahams, RBC’s Co-Head of Biotechnology Research, has some hope based on what he’s seeing but cautions we’re “in the early innings.” A vaccine is probably not realistic before 2021, he warns. And treatments – antivirals and anti-inflammatories, especially – could be months away. The efficacy of treatments could also vary widely across populations, just as we’re seeing with the virus. A magic bullet for curing coronavirus “is probably wishful thinking.” But even so, the availability of treatments, along with other measures, may slow infections, reduce their severity and enable some return to normalcy.

For a more detailed look at Brian’s research, read the full article here

The Eurozone’s Next Crisis

Published April 2, 2020

Featuring Peter Schaffrik, RBC Capital Markets Global Macro Strategist

Good news, the rate of growth of new COVID-19 cases in Europe appears to be slowing. Bad news, the economic cost is just beginning to hit home. With deep and broad recession underway, the eurozone is again divided over how to stabilize the economy and pay for its recovery. Ideas for joint action, from procurement of protective equipment to unemployment benefits, are coming by the day. But there’s no agreement on how to backstop the enormous debts member countries will incur. RBC’s London-based macro strategist Peter Schaffrik explains how the continent will bridge its newest divide.

March 2020

Market Bottoms Take Time to Form

Published March 31, 2020

Featuring Lori Calvasina, RBC Capital Markets Head of U.S. Equity Strategy

The past week saw four big up days for equities, and that tells Lori Calvasina that we haven’t seen enough capitulation to signal a new bull run. She believes more lows may lie ahead. As Head of U.S. Equity Strategy at RBC Capital Markets, Calvasina has been listening to big investors and studying market sentiment – and she’s detecting too much calm given the economic storm. On our latest podcast, she explains how investors should approach the current market and prepare for a stronger 2021.

Canada’s Two-fisted Punch

Published March 30, 2020

Featuring Craig Wright, RBC Chief Economist

Canada struck back with a two-fisted punch to send monetary and fiscal confidence to the economy. The Bank of Canada not only cut rates; it embraced quantitative easing, to buy bonds and other financial assets from governments that will be borrowing a lot more money. For its part, the federal government came out with Phase 2 of its stimulus package, to help small- and medium-sized businesses stay open and keep their workers on payroll. Will it be enough to prevent a major recession? RBC’s Chief Economist Craig Wright explains.

King Dollar Steps Back

Published March 27, 2020

Featuring George Davis, RBC Capital Markets Chief Technical Strategist, Fixed Income, Currencies & Commodities

While stocks have been surging, the US dollar has been on a week-long slide. The correction comes after an extraordinary run-up in the dollar in early March, when investors fled to the greenback’s higher ground and corporates followed, to ensure they were dollar-funded heading into an economic crisis. The prospects now of massive fiscal stimulus and concerted central bank intervention have investors looking anew to the euro, pound and even the Canadian dollar. George Davis, RBC Capital Markets’ currency strategist, explains what lies ahead.

Can Trump Bring Peace to the Oil War?

Published March 26, 2020

Featuring Helima Croft, RBC Capital Markets Global Head of Commodities Strategy

Donald Trump is using every diplomatic tool to stop the oil war unleashed by Russia and Saudi Arabia, betting that neither can sustain themselves for long at $25 a barrel. But the Russians may be betting that Trump – or at least U.S. oil producers – will blink first, by scaling back American production and allowing OPEC+ to again drive global markets. Even if the oil powers agree to stabilize markets at a higher price, it may take longer than many are expecting, as the COVID-19 pandemic decimates global growth. Helima Croft, RBC Capital Markets Global Head of Commodities Strategy, joins us to explain.

This is the Backfill.

Published March 25, 2020

Featuring Tom Porcelli, RBC Capital Markets Chief U.S. Economist 

Washington seems to finally have bipartisan agreement for a $2-trillion stimulus package. Tom Porcelli, RBC Capital Markets Chief U.S. Economist, says it’s enough to “backfill” the U.S. economy until mid-May. How will the world’s economic engine fare after that? That depends on the success of social distancing. But Porcelli thinks the creatively-driven U.S. economy – from media streaming to food services – could be more resilient than markets have assumed. And if U.S. consumers come out of lockdown and unleash their pent-up demand, the world will notice.

Have Markets Found a Bottom?

Published March 24, 2020

Featuring Craig Wright, SVP and Chief Economist, RBC

After one month of declines, 10,000 points off the Dow and a lot of “announcement indigestion,” RBC’s Chief Economist Craig Wright says markets are still searching for a bottom. They’re unsure of how to price so much new risk, all at once. Central banks are also struggling to assert themselves, while governments have not been able to get enough new money into the economy. Even when the trillion-dollar checks are cut, will consumers spend and businesses invest?


John Stackhouse
Senior Vice President, Office of the CEO, Royal Bank of Canada

‡ For relevant conflicts disclosure, please visit our Disclosure Lookup.
RBC Economics provides RBC and its clients with timely economic forecasts and analysis.