By Landon Thomas Jr. at The New York Times
As investors scramble to make sense of the wild market swings in recent days, a number of financial experts argue that, for more than a year now, signs pointing to an equity crisis were there for all to see.
The data points range from the obvious to the obscure, encompassing stock market and credit bubbles in China, the strength of the dollar relative to emerging market currencies, a commodity rout and a sudden halt to global earnings growth.
While it would have been impossible to predict the precise timing of the last week’s downturn, this array of economic and financial indicators led to an inescapable conclusion, these analysts say: The United States economy would only be able to avoid for so long the deflationary forces that have taken root in China.
And if the bull market had made it to April, it would have become the second-longest equity rally in United States history.
The one common theme binding all these measures together is the risk that they pose to the economic recovery in the United States. The Federal Reserve has said that it expects to raise interest rates sometime soon, given evidence over the last year that economic growth is picking up.
But more and more analysts are now pointing to problems in China and other markets as posing a real threat to the American economy.
“The global G.D.P. pie is shrinking,” said Raoul Pal, a former Goldman Sachs executive, now based in the Cayman Islands, who produces the Global Macro Investor, a monthly financial report that caters to hedge funds and other sophisticated investors.
Of the hundreds of indicators that Mr. Pal follows, the most crucial over the last year,