Tuesday , March 19 2019
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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

Weekly Gasoline Price Update: Regular and Premium, WTIC All Up

1 day ago

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The price of Regular and Premium are up eight cents each from last week. According to GasBuddy.com, California has the highest average price for Regular at $3.33 and Utah has the cheapest at $2.28. The WTIC end of day spot price closed at 59.38, a 4.6% increase from this time last week.

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World Markets Update

1 day ago

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All eight indexes on our world watch list posted gains through March 18, 2019. The top performer is the Shanghai SSE with a 25.60% gain and in second is Hong Kong’s Hang Seng with a gain of 17.03%. In third is France’s CAC 40 with a gain of 15.43%. Coming in last is India’s BSE SENSEX with a gain of 6.14%.

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NAHB Housing Market Index: “Builder Confidence Holds Steady in March”

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 62 is unchanged from last month.

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ECRI Weekly Leading Index Update: All Measures Up Again

4 days ago

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This morning’s release of the publicly available data from ECRI puts its Weekly Leading Index (WLI) at 145.3, up 0.2 from the previous week. Year-over-year the four-week moving average of the indicator is now at -3.20%, up from last week. The WLI Growth indicator is now at -2.91, also up from the previous week.

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RecessionAlert Weekly Leading Index Update

4 days ago

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The Weekly Leading Economic Index (WLEI) uses fifty different time series from these categories: Corporate Bond Composite, Treasury Bond Composite, Stock Market Composite, Labor Market Composite, Credit Market Composite.

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Empire State Manufacturing Survey: Slight Growth in March

4 days ago

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This morning we got the latest Empire State Manufacturing Survey. The diffusion index for General Business Conditions at 3.80 was a decrease of 5.1 from the previous month’s 8.80. The Investing.com forecast was for a reading of 10.0.

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Five Decades of Middle-Class Wages: February 2019 Update

5 days ago

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We’ve updated this series to include the February release of the Consumer Price Index as the deflator and the February monthly employment update. The latest hypothetical real (inflation-adjusted) annual earnings are at $38,942, down 11.6% from 45-plus years ago.

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Weekly Heating Oil Prices

6 days ago

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The latest price of home heating oil nationwide is $3.23, unchanged from last week and down six cents since the beginning of the season.

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Baby Boomer Employment Across Time

6 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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The “Real” Goods on the January Durable Goods Data

6 days ago

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This morning, the Census Bureau posted the Advance Report on Durable Goods New Orders. This series dates from 1992 and is not adjusted for either population growth or inflation. Let’s now review Durable Goods data with two adjustments.

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U.S. Workforce Recovery

6 days ago

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We’ve updated our monthly workforce analysis to include Friday’s Employment Report for February. The unemployment rate fell to 3.9%, and the number of new nonfarm jobs (a relatively volatile number subject to extensive revisions) came in at 20K.

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Headline Durable Goods Orders Up 0.4% in January

6 days ago

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The latest new orders number at 0.4% month-over-month (MoM) was better than the Investing.com consensus of -0.5%. The series is up 8.4% year-over-year (YoY). If we exclude transportation, "core" durable goods came in at -0.1% MoM, which was worse than the Investing.com consensus of 0.1%. The core measure is up 4.5% YoY.

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

6 days ago

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Today’s release of the February Producer Price Index (PPI) for Final Demand came in at 0.1% month-over-month seasonally adjusted, up from -0.1% last month. It is at 1.9% year-over-year, down from 2.0% last month, on a non-seasonally adjusted basis. Core Final Demand (less food and energy) came in at 0.1% MoM, down from 0.3% the previous month and is up 2.5% YoY NSA. Investing.com MoM consensus forecasts were for 0.2% headline and 0.2% core.

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A Long-Term Look at Inflation

7 days ago

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The Consumer Price Index for Urban Consumers (CPI-U) released this morning puts the year-over-year inflation rate at 1.52%. It is below the 3.76% average since the end of the Second World War and above its 10-year moving average, now at 1.58%.

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January Retail Sales: Up 0.2% MoM

7 days ago

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The Census Bureau’s Advance Retail Sales Report for January was released Monday morning. Headline sales came in at 0.2% month-over-month to one decimal and was better than the Investing.com forecast of 0.0%.Core sales (ex Autos) came in at 0.90% MoM (to two decimals).

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What Inflation Means to You: Inside the Consumer Price Index

7 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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Inflation: An X-Ray View of the Components

7 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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Demographic Trends for the 50-and-Older Work Force

7 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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The Big Four Economic Indicators: January Real Retail Sales

7 days ago

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Note: With the release of January Retail Sales and Consumer Price Index, we’ve updated this commentary to include the latest Real Retail Sales. Month-over-month nominal sales in January increased by 0.2% (0.21% to two decimals). Real Retail Sales, calculated with the seasonally adjusted Consumer Price Index, increased by 0.23%.

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Consumer Price Index: February Headline at 1.52%

7 days ago

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The Bureau of Labor Statistics released the February Consumer Price Index data this morning. The year-over-year non-seasonally adjusted Headline CPI came in at 1.52%, down from 1.55% the previous month. Year-over-year Core CPI (ex Food and Energy) came in at 2.08%, down from the previous month’s 2.15% and above the Fed’s 2% PCE target.

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NFIB Small Business Survey: Stable in February

7 days ago

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The headline number for February came in at 101.7, up 0.5 from the previous month. The index is at the 79th percentile in this series. Today’s number came in below the Investing.com forecast of 102.0.

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Weekly Gasoline Price Update: Regular and Premium Up

8 days ago

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The price of Regular and Premium are up five and four cents, respectively, from last week. According to GasBuddy.com, California has the highest average price for Regular at $3.30 and Mississippi has the cheapest at $2.21. The WTIC end of day spot price closed at 56.79, a 0.4% increase from this time last week.

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World Markets Update

8 days ago

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All eight indexes on our world watch list posted gains through March 11, 2019. The top performer is the Shanghai SSE with a 22.78% gain and in second is Hong Kong’s Hang Seng with a gain of 13.42%. In third is France’s CAC 40 with a gain of 12.730%. Coming in last is India’s BSE SENSEX with a gain of 3.24%.

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Long-Term Trends in Employment by Age Group

8 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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