By Schwab Center For Financial Research, April 01, 2019
Why the yield curve matters.
A normal yield curve slopes upward from shorter maturities to longer ones. Investors usually require extra return to tie up their money for longer periods.
The slope can change when the Federal Reserve raises short-term rates to slow economic growth and curb inflation, while long-term rates may fall if markets expect lower growth and inflation.
If the Federal Reserve raises rates too quickly, short-term yields may actually move higher than long-term yields, leading to an inverted yield curve.
When a yield curve inverts, lending may become less profitable for banks because they tend to borrow at short-term rates and issue loans at longer-term rates… and tighter bank lending standards may lead to an economic slowdown as it becomes more difficult for consumers and businesses to borrow for big purchases.
Investors worry because recessions have historically been preceded by an inverted yield curve, but an inversion doesn’t necessarily mean a recession is imminent.
All expressions of opinion are subject to change without notice in reaction to shifting market conditions.
Data contained herein from third-party providers is obtained from what we considered reliable sources. However, its accuracy, completeness or reliability cannot be guaranteed.
Hypothetical examples are for illustrative purposes only and are not intended to represent the past or future performance of any specific investment.(0319-9XRC)
Thumbs up / down votes are submitted voluntarily by readers and are not meant to suggest the future performance or suitability of any account type, product or service for any particular reader and may not be representative of the experience of other readers. When displayed, thumbs up / down vote counts represent whether people found the content helpful or not helpful and are not intended as a testimonial. Any written feedback or comments collected on this page will not be published. Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. may in its sole discretion re-set the vote count to zero, remove votes appearing to be generated by robots or scripts, or remove the modules used to collect feedback and votes.