Friday , January 17 2020
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Doug Short

Doug Short

My original dshort.com website was launched in February 2005 using a domain name based on my real name, Doug Short. I'm a first wave boomer with a Ph.D. in English from Duke and a lifelong interest in economics and finance. In 2011 my website was acquired by Advisor Perspectives.

Articles by Doug Short

A Long-Term Look at Inflation

1 day ago

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The Consumer Price Index for Urban Consumers (CPI-U) released Monday morning puts the year-over-year inflation rate at 2.29%. It is below the 3.76% average since the end of the Second World War and above its 10-year moving average, now at 1.77%.

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NAHB Housing Market Index: “Builder Confidence Begins Year Strong as Single-Family Growth Continues”

1 day ago

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The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) Housing Market Index (HMI) is a gauge of builder opinion on the relative level of current and future single-family home sales. It is a diffusion index, which means that a reading above 50 indicates a favorable outlook on home sales; below 50 indicates a negative outlook. The latest reading of 75 is down 1 from last month.

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Philly Fed Manufacturing Index: Up in January

1 day ago

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The latest Manufacturing Index came in at 17.0, up 14.6 from last month’s 2.4. The 3-month moving average came in at 9.3, up from 5.9 last month. Since this is a diffusion index, negative readings indicate contraction, positive ones indicate expansion. The Six-Month Outlook came in at 38.4, up from the previous month’s 34.8.

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Retail Sales: Up 0.33% in December

1 day ago

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The Census Bureau’s Advance Retail Sales Report for December was released this morning. Headline sales came in at 0.33% month-over-month to one decimal and at below the Investing.com forecast. Core sales (ex Autos) came in at 0.75% MoM (to two decimals).

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Weekly Unemployment Claims: Down 10K

1 day ago

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This morning’s seasonally adjusted 204K new claims, down 10K from the previous week’s unrevised figure, was better than the Investing.com forecast of 216K.

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Baby Boomer Employment Across Time

2 days ago

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The 20th century Baby Boom was one of the most powerful demographic events in the history of the United States. We’ve created a series of charts to show seven age cohorts of the employed population from 1948 to the present.

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Inflation: An X-Ray View of the Components

2 days ago

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Here is a table showing the annualized change in Headline and Core CPI, not seasonally adjusted, for each of the past six months. Also included are the eight components of Headline CPI and a separate entry for Energy, which is a collection of sub-indexes in Housing and Transportation. We can make some inferences about how inflation is impacting our personal expenses depending on our relative exposure to the individual components.

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U.S. Workforce Recovery

2 days ago

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We’ve updated our monthly workforce analysis to include Friday’s Employment Report for November. The unemployment rate fell to 3.5%, and the number of new nonfarm jobs (a relatively volatile number subject to extensive revisions) came in at 266K.

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What Inflation Means to You: Inside the Consumer Price Index

2 days ago

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Let’s do some analysis of the Consumer Price Index, the best-known measure of inflation. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) divides all expenditures into eight categories and assigns a relative size to each. The pie chart illustrates the components of the Consumer Price Index for Urban Consumers, the CPI-U.

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December Producer Price Index: Core Final Demand Up 0.1% MoM

2 days ago

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Today’s release of the December Producer Price Index (PPI) for Final Demand was up 0.1% month-over-month seasonally adjusted, up from no change last month. It is at 1.3% year-over-year, up from 1.1% last month, on a non-seasonally adjusted basis. Core Final Demand (less food and energy) came in at 0.1% MoM, up from -0.2% the previous month and is up 1.1% YoY NSA. Investing.com MoM consensus forecasts were for 0.2% headline and 0.2% core.

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Demographic Trends for the 50-and-Older Work Force

3 days ago

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Note: This commentary has been updated with the latest numbers from Friday’s Employment Report. Consider: Today nearly one in three of the 65-69 cohort and one in five of the 70-74 cohort are in the labor force.

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Long-Term Trends in Employment by Age Group

3 days ago

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The Labor Force Participation Rate (LFPR) is a simple computation: You take the Civilian Labor Force (people age 16 and over employed or seeking employment) and divide it by the Civilian Noninstitutional Population (those 16 and over not in the military and or committed to an institution).

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Five Decades of Middle-Class Wages: December 2019 Update

3 days ago

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We’ve updated this series to include the December release of the Consumer Price Index as the deflator and the December monthly employment update. The latest hypothetical real (inflation-adjusted) annual earnings are at $39,848, down 11.4% from 45-plus years ago.

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Consumer Price Index: December Headline at 2.29%

3 days ago

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The Bureau of Labor Statistics released the December Consumer Price Index data this morning. The year-over-year non-seasonally adjusted Headline CPI came in at 2.29%, up from 2.05% the previous month. Year-over-year Core CPI (ex Food and Energy) came in at 2.26%, down slightly from the previous month’s 2.32% and above the Fed’s 2% PCE target.

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World Markets Update

3 days ago

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Seven indexes on our world watch list posted gains through January 13, 2020. The top performer is Hong Kong’s Hang Seng with a gain of 1.44%. China’s Shanghai is in second with a gain of 0.98% and in third is our own S&P 500 with a gain of 0.93%. Coming in last is France’s CAC 40 with a loss of 0.09%.

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Weekly Gasoline Price Update: WTIC Down 8.2%

3 days ago

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The price of Regular and Premium are down a penny and unchanged, respectively, from last week. According to GasBuddy.com, Hawaii has the highest average price for Regular at $3.59 and Oklahoma has the cheapest at $2.19. The WTIC end of day spot price closed at 58.08, down 8.2% from last week.

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The Big Four Economic Indicators: December Nonfarm Employment

7 days ago

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This commentary has been updated to include this morning’s release of Nonfarm Employment. December’s 145K increase in total nonfarm payrolls had revisions that resulted in 14K fewer jobs than previously reported. Annual revisions going back to 2015 were made. The Investing.com consensus was for 164K new jobs and the unemployment rate to remain at 3.5%.

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ECRI Weekly Leading Index Update

7 days ago

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This morning’s release of the publicly available data from ECRI puts its Weekly Leading Index (WLI) at 148.7, up 0.6 from the previous week. Year-over-year the four-week moving average of the indicator is now at 3.58%, up from last week. The WLI Growth indicator is now at 3.29, up from the previous week.

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Weekly Unemployment Claims: Down 9K

8 days ago

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This morning’s seasonally adjusted 214K new claims, down 9K from the previous week’s revised figure, was better than the Investing.com forecast of 220K.

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A Closer Look at Today’s ADP Employment Report

9 days ago

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In this morning’s ADP employment report we got the December estimate of 202K new nonfarm private employment jobs from ADP, an increase over November’s revised 124K. The popular spin on this indicator is as a preview to the monthly jobs report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

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