Tuesday , January 22 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

Treasury Snapshot: 10-Year Yield at 2.79%

4 days ago

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Let’s take a closer look at recent activity in US Treasuries. The yield on the 10-year note ended January 18, 2019, at 2.79% and the 30-year bond closed at 3.09%.

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ECRI Weekly Leading Index Update: YoY at 6+ Year Low

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 145.1, up 1.7 from the previous week. Year-over-year the four-week moving average of the indicator is now at -3.28%, down from last week and its lowest since August 2012. The WLI Growth indicator is now at -6.23, up from the previous week.

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Vehicle Miles Traveled: Another Look at Our Evolving Behavior

5 days ago

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"Travel on all roads and streets changed by +0.3% (+0.8 billion vehicle miles) for November 2018 as compared with November 2017. Travel for the month is estimated to be 258.5 billion vehicle miles." The 12-month moving average was up 0.03% month-over-month and up 0.4% year-over-year. If we factor in population growth, the 12-month MA of the civilian population-adjusted data (age 16-and-over) is down 0.05% month-over-month and down 0.7% year-over-year.

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Philly Fed Manufacturing Index: Continued Growth in January

5 days ago

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The latest Manufacturing Index came in at 17.0, up from last month’s 9.1. The 3-month moving average came in at 12.7, down from 13.6 last month. Since this is a diffusion index, negative readings indicate contraction, positive ones indicate expansion. The Six-Month Outlook came in at 31.2, an increase from the previous month’s 29.9.

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NAHB Housing Market Index: “Lower Interest Rates Stabilize Builder Confidence”

6 days 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 58 is an increase of 2 from 56 last month. Investing.com had a forecast of 57.

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Empire State Manufacturing Survey: Slight Growth in January

7 days ago

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This morning we got the latest Empire State Manufacturing Survey. The diffusion index for General Business Conditions at 3.9 was a decrease of 7.6 from the previous month’s 11.5. The Investing.com forecast was for a reading of 10.75.

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

7 days ago

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Today’s release of the December Producer Price Index (PPI) for Final Demand came in at -0.2% month-over-month seasonally adjusted, down from last month’s 0.1%. It is at 2.5% year-over-year, unchanged 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 2.7% YoY NSA. Investing.com MoM consensus forecasts were for -0.2% headline and -0.1% core.

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Weekly Gasoline Price Update: Regular and Premium Mostly Unchanged

8 days ago

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The price of Regular and Premium are mostly unchanged from last week. According to GasBuddy.com, California has the highest average price for Regular at $3.25 and Oklahoma has the cheapest at $1.86. The WTIC end of day spot price closed at 50.51, a 4.1% increase from this time last week.

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World Markets Update

8 days ago

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One of eight indexes on our world watch list posted a loss in the first week of 2019. The top performer is Hong Kong’s Hang Seng with a 4.65% gain and in second is our own S&P 500 with a gain of 2.89%. In third is Shanghai’s SSE with a gain of 2.86%. Coming in last is India’s BSE SENSEX with a minor loss of 0.11%.

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Five Decades of Middle-Class Wages: December 2018 Update

8 days ago

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We’ve updated this series to include Friday’s release of the Consumer Price Index as the deflator and the December monthly update. The latest hypothetical real (inflation-adjusted) annual earnings are at $38,839, down 11.7% from 45-plus years ago.

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A Long-Term Look at Inflation

8 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 1.91%. It is below the 3.76% average since the end of the Second World War and above its 10-year moving average, now at 1.56%.

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Treasury Snapshot: 10-Year Yield at 2.71%

11 days ago

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Let’s take a closer look at recent activity in US Treasuries. The yield on the 10-year note ended January 11, 2019, at 2.71% and the 30-year bond closed at 3.04%.

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What Inflation Means to You: Inside the Consumer Price Index

11 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

11 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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Consumer Price Index: December Headline at 1.91%

11 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 1.91%, down from 2.18% the previous month. Year-over-year Core CPI (ex Food and Energy) came in at 2.18%, down from the previous month’s 2.21% and above the Fed’s 2% PCE target.

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The Latest Look at the Total Return Roller Coaster

12 days ago

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Here’s an interesting set of charts that will especially resonate with those of us who follow economic and market cycles. Imagine that five years ago you invested $10,000 in the S&P 500. How much would it be worth today, with dividends reinvested but adjusted for inflation? The purchasing power of your investment has increased to $14,727 for an annualized real return of 7.77%.

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U.S. Workforce Recovery

13 days ago

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We’ve updated our monthly workforce analysis to include Friday’s Employment Report for December. The unemployment rate rose to 3.9%, and the number of new nonfarm jobs (a relatively volatile number subject to extensive revisions) came in at 312K.

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Baby Boomer Employment Across Time

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

13 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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