July 27, 2018
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Industry Focus: Finance
Following a great deal of uncertainty as the apparel industry approached the fourth quarter of 2019, businesses entered 2020 with cautious optimism. While the warnings of a recession had turned around, with forecasters revising their predictions for the new year and progress with trade deals including the finalization of the United States–Mexico–Canada Agreement, in addition to advancement toward an agreement with China, additional concerns remained.
Industry Focus: Finance—How would you advise your apparel-industry clients to prepare for a potential recession?
Around the globe, trusted economic forecasters are predicting a slowdown over the next year, yet there is disparity regarding whether they feel a recession will occur. As previous spans of negative economic growth have shown, the most effective method of navigating through recessionary periods is to prepare in advance, expecting the worst while hoping for the best.
The formula for doing business is slowly changing this year. While interest rates were rising at a steady pace last year, it’s a different story this year. The Federal Reserve hasn’t raised benchmark interest rates in 2019 and may even lower them, which is good news for apparel manufacturers and retailers.
Now that the Trump administration’s $200 billion of additional tariffs have gone into effect on thousands of Chinese imports, the apparel and retail industries are figuring out what to do next. Covered in this round of tariffs are buttons, bobbins, yarns, embroidery, textiles, handbags and leather. Apparel is not part of the equation yet.