In 2021, inflation became impossible to ignore. At the end of the year, consumer prices were up by 7%. This was the biggest surge in prices in one year since 1982. The situation has understandably caused stock investors in 2022 to brace for uncertainty. Stockbrokers can expect many questions from clients as they handle their calls on Nice Call Recording for trading floor applications. Although inflation does not spell total doom for investors, they may need to reevaluate their strategies, especially as popular tech stocks continue to experience losses.
Inflation Not Likely Temporary
In 2021, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell suggested that inflation would be a short-term problem derived from pandemic supply chain issues and other disruptions. However, with inflation persisting into 2022, he now recognizes that it will remain a primary issue for investors and consumers.
Stock advisers and traders capturing conversations with their clients on NICE Call Recording equipment hear a variety of views on the topic of inflation. A Bloomberg News review of 500 investor calls in 2022 cited inflation as the dominant topic. The sentiments expressed by people running major companies ranged from still considering inflation as temporary to those who view it as the new normal.
Despite anyone’s views on the permanency of inflation, almost everyone worries how the response from the Federal Reserve will impact profits.
Fed Plans Interest Rate Hikes
With inflation at such levels, nearly everyone expects the Federal Reserve to increase interest rates. At least three interest rate increases appear to be planned for 2022. If inflation persists despite new constraints on the money supply, some analysts predict that a fourth interest rate hike will happen.
Higher interest rates are seen as a curb on inflation because they make borrowing money more expensive. This has a ripple effect throughout the economy as businesses seek loans for new projects and operational expenses. On the consumer level, people will see higher borrowing costs for mortgages and auto loans.
The looming increase in interest rates will likely weigh heavily on the minds of investors. Concern about inflation will at least partially motivate the trading decisions that they communicate to traders during conversations preserved through Nice VoIP Call Recording.
Tech Companies Already Feeling The Pinch
Stockbrokers and traders use NICE VoIP Call Recording to satisfy regulatory requirements about keeping a record of calls about trades. In the first quarter of 2022, many of those calls have involved selling tech stocks. This sector, led by Alphabet (Google), Meta (Facebook), Microsoft, and Amazon, has dropped significantly. The Nasdaq, which skews heavily toward tech companies, has dropped 7% so far this year.
The threat of rising interest rates has dampened enthusiasm for tech companies due to their tendency to borrow heavily. Additionally, inflation poses a general threat to the economy, and tech companies thrive in strong economies.
Bond Market Drops On Inflation
Before inflation sent some stocks reeling, the damage from inflation started in the bond market. The rates paid on bonds influence interest paid on loans and credit cards. As the price of bonds drops, their yields increase, which triggers the rise in interest rates. Right now, the yields on bonds are at their highest in two years, which has prompted investors to sell them more frequently. At this point, the volatility in the bond market has inspired more people to sell their stocks as well.
With uncertainty over inflation at the top of investors’ minds, brokers and traders can expect to handle urgent calls. Many of these professionals use Nice Software to reliably record trading conversations and deliver accurate service.