Challenges and Changes Through 2020 - Part 1

By Brian Beaulieu on May, 9 2019

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Brian Beaulieu

Brian Beaulieu has served as CEO and Chief Economist of ITR Economics™ since 1987, where he researches the use of business cycle analysis and economic forecasting as tools for improving profitability.

Profiting through the ups and downs of the business cycle takes persistence and foresight. The Challenges and Changes June 2019 webinar hosted by Alan and me (Brian) will provide foresight using objective, data-driven analytics that work. One of the goals of the webinar is to enable you to rise to the challenge of maintaining profitability during the nadir of the business cycle and remain positioned to maximize the upside of the next cycle. This is going to be a mental exercise juxtaposed against the myriad of “good news” stories and misconceptions propagated at the speed of electrons.

Profits drive economies and societies. Thinking otherwise has led many a company, society, and culture to the abyss of history. It is a topic we take very seriously.

"Civilization and profit go hand in hand." ~ Calvin Coolidge

Profits will be under pressure from two sources over the next four quarters. The first source is macroeconomic business cycle decline. Many companies will experience a slowing in the rate of rise in revenues or actual revenue decline. Being proactive to the progression of the cycle can mitigate this aspect of shrinking profits, but action is required. Managers may decide that some degradation in profits is acceptable if it means that they will be better positioned to capitalize on the 2020-21 period of business cycle rise.

During the Challenges and Changes webinar, we will also discuss profit margin compression. This pressure is the result of rising costs that aggravate profitability because of the macro deceleration and potential contraction. Labor costs and associated costs such as health care financing will be impinging upon profit margins. The issue of tariffs is unsettled at this time and could prove to be another aggravating source of margin compression.

Managing costs and budgeting for slowing growth or no growth takes resolve, and you need solid reasons for executing such actions. That is what we will provide at the Challenges and Changes webinar presented by Alan and me.

Brian Beaulieu

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