Friday , September 24 2021
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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

Existing-Home Sales Retreat in August

2 days ago

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This morning’s release of the August Existing-Home Sales showed that sales fell to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.88 million units from the previous month’s revised 6.0 million. The Investing.com consensus was for 5.89 million. The latest number represents a 2.0% decrease from the previous month and a 1.5% decrease YoY.

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Weekly Gasoline Prices: Regular and Premium Up 2 Cents

3 days ago

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As of September 21, the price of Regular and Premium was up two cents each from the previous week. According to GasBuddy.com, California has the highest average price for Regular at $4.39 and Texas has the cheapest at $2.78. The WTIC end-of-day spot price closed at 70.14, down 0.31% from last week and up 47% from the beginning of the year.

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New Residential Housing Starts Up 3.9% in August

3 days ago

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The U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development have now published their findings for August new residential housing starts. The latest reading of 1.615M was above the Investing.com forecast of 1.555M and a 3.9% increase from the previous month’s 1.554M.

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New Residential Building Permits: Up 6% in August

3 days ago

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The U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development have now published their findings for August new residential building permits. The latest reading of 1.728M was up 6% from the July reading and is above the Investing.com forecast of 1.600M.

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World Markets Update: September 20, 2021

4 days ago

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Seven out of eight indexes on our world watch list posted gains through September 20, 2021. The top performer is India’s BSE SENSEX with a gain of 22.11%, France’s CAC 40 is in second is with a gain of 16.29%, and our own S&P 500 is in third with a gain of 16.02%. Coming in last is Hong Kong’s Hang Seng with a loss of 11.5%.

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NAHB Housing Market Index: “Builder Confidence Steadies as Material and Labor Challenges Persist”

4 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 76 is up slightly from last month.

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S&P 500 Snapshot: Flip Flops, High Volume

7 days ago

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The S&P 500 flip-flopped this week, ending Friday down 0.91% from Thursday and with a very high volume. The index is up 18% YTD and is just 2.29% below its record close.

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Now Tracking: Zillow Home Value Index

7 days ago

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Zillow.com, the real estate listing and brokerage website, has a wealth of real estate data publicly available. Of these, the Zillow Home Value Index (ZHVI) attempts to provide a seasonally adjusted measure of home values as well as market changes.

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ECRI Weekly Leading Index Update

7 days ago

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This morning’s late release of the publicly available data from ECRI puts the WLI at 153.3, up 0.5 from the previous week’s revised figure. The WLIg is at 3.6, down from last week and the WLI YoY is at 10.15%, up slightly from last week.

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Michigan Consumer Sentiment: September Prelim Up Slightly

7 days ago

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The September Preliminary came in at 71.0, up 0.7 (1%) from the August Final. Investing.com had forecast 72.0. Since its beginning in 1978, consumer sentiment is 17.5 percent below the average reading (arithmetic mean) and 16.6 percent below the geometric mean.

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The Big Four: August Real Retail Sales Up 0.7%

8 days ago

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Month-over-month nominal sales in August was up 0.71% and up 15.1% YoY. Real Retail Sales, calculated with the seasonally adjusted Consumer Price Index, increased by 0.43% and was up 9.4% YoY.

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Retail Sales Up 0.7% in August, 15.1% YoY

8 days ago

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The Census Bureau’s Advance Retail Sales Report for August was released this morning. Headline sales came in at 0.71% month-over-month to two decimals and was above the Investing.com forecast of -0.8%. Core sales (ex Autos) came in at 1.81% MoM.

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Weekly Unemployment Claims: Up 20K

8 days ago

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This morning’s seasonally adjusted 332K new claims, up 20K from the previous week’s revised figure, was above the Investing.com forecast of 330K.

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Philly Fed Mfg Index: “Current Indicators Remain Elevated”

8 days ago

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The latest Manufacturing Index came in at 30.7, up 11.3 from last month’s 19.4. The 3-month moving average came in at 24.0, down from last month. Since this is a diffusion index, negative readings indicate contraction, positive ones indicate expansion. The Six-Month Outlook came in at 20, down 13.7 from the previous month’s 33.7.

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Inflation: The Components

9 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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Empire State Mfg Survey: Swift Growth in September

9 days ago

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This morning we got the latest Empire State Manufacturing Survey. The diffusion index for General Business Conditions at 34.3 was an increase of 16 from the previous month’s 18.3. The Investing.com forecast was for a reading of 18.

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Long-Term Look at the CPI

10 days ago

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The Consumer Price Index for Urban Consumers (CPI-U) released this week puts the year-over-year inflation rate at 5.25%. It is above the 3.76% average since the end of the Second World War and above its 10-year moving average, now at 1.79%.

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Middle-Class Wages in August 2021

10 days ago

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We’ve updated this series to include the August release of the Consumer Price Index as the deflator and the monthly employment update. The latest hypothetical real (inflation-adjusted) annual earnings are at $44,443, down 6.5% from 45-plus years ago.

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Components of the CPI: August 2021

10 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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Weekly Gasoline Prices: Up 41% This Year

10 days ago

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As of September 13, the price of Regular and Premium was down a penny each from the previous week. According to GasBuddy.com, California has the highest average price for Regular at $4.38 and Mississippi has the cheapest at $2.78. The WTIC end-of-day spot price closed at 70.45, up 3.1% from last week and up 48% from the beginning of the year.

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Consumer Price Index: July Core at 4%

10 days ago

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The Bureau of Labor Statistics released the August Consumer Price Index data this morning. The year-over-year non-seasonally adjusted Headline CPI came in at 5.25%, down from 5.37% the previous month. Year-over-year Core CPI (ex Food and Energy) came in at 4.00%, down from 4.27% the previous month and above the Fed’s 2% PCE target.

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World Markets Update: September 13, 2021

11 days ago

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Seven out of eight indexes on our world watch list posted gains through September 13, 2021. The top performer is India’s BSE SENSEX with a gain of 21.83%, France’s CAC 40 is in second is with a gain of 20.27%, and our own S&P 500 is in third with a gain of 18.97%. Coming in last is Hong Kong’s Hang Seng with a loss of 5.20%.

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S&P 500 Snapshot: Up 18.7% YTD

14 days ago

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The S&P 500 spent the week in decline, ending each day in a loss from the previous. However, the index is still just 1.73% below its record close and is up 18.7% YTD.

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Demographic Trends for the 50-and-Older Work Force

14 days ago

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Note: This commentary has been updated with the latest numbers from the latest Employment Report for August. 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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Baby Boomer Employment – August 2021

14 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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