Tuesday , April 20 2021
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Hale Stewart: Bonddad Blog

The Bonddad Blog is authored by Hale Stewart, a financial advisor. His blog publishes an invaluable weekly economic review on the Bond Market, International Economics, and Equity and Economics. These links along with his highly detailed review of economic trends makes this one of the top economics blogs

Weekly Indicators for April 12 – 16 at Seeking Alpha

 - by New Deal democratMy Weekly Indicators post is up at Seeking Alpha.The big call I made last year is that conditions were setting up for a Boom this year, once the pandemic started to be overcome. Well, almost half of all Americans have received at least one dose of vaccine, and all the signs are that the Boom is well and truly upon us.So the nowcast and short term forecast is all about chronicling the Boom, while the long term forecast is about what happens as the Boom begins to fade.As...

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Why March’s big jump in real retail sales augurs well for big employment gains through summer

 - by New Deal democratYesterday I wrote that the steep decline in new jobless claims in the past 4 weeks likely presages another big monthly employment gain, on the order of 1 million or more jobs.Another very big positive for the next few months in employment is the massive, stimulus-fueled jump in retail sales.As I have pointed out many times, real retail sales (blue in the graph below, /2 for scale) tend to lead employment (red) by about 3-4 months. Here’s the long term YoY look from...

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March housing permits and starts – don’t get too excited

 - by New Deal democratDon’t get too excited about this morning’s big jump in housing starts for March. In the first place, it wasn’t confirmed in either total or single family permits, which both remain down from December and January, and the latter of which is the least of all housing numbers:Also, the big jump in starts is mainly a rebound from February’s Big Texas Freeze. February and March starts together average 1599 annualized, which is significantly below the December and January...

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Industrial production for March disappoints – but only on the surface

 - by New Deal democratAs an initial note, retail sales for March blew out to the upside, but as expected due to cosnumers’ spending their latest pandemic stimulus checks. This does have implications for future jobs reports, but I will report on that tomorrow. But to the main point . . . Industrial production rose in March, but disappointingly - on the surface at least - did not recover to its level in January, as shown below in the graph of total production (blue) and the manufacturing....

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Jobless claims break on through – 1M+ jobs report for April looks likely

 - by New Deal democratAs I have said for the past few weeks, new jobless claims are likely to the most important weekly economic data for the next 3 to 6 months. With the number of those vaccinated continuing to increase, I have been expecting a big increase in renewed consumer and social activities, with a concomitant gain in monthly employment gains - as we saw in the March jobs report.Four weeks ago I set a few objective targets: new claims to be under 500,000 by Memorial Day, and below...

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Wealth distribution in the US continues to be a first order economic issue

 - by New Deal democratTomorrow is one of those days when just about Every Economic Statistic in the World will be released. In the meantime, no new data today.So, while we wait, let me send you over to this article by Wolf Richter analyzing the distribution of wealth and assets in the US updated by the Fed through the end of last year.Unsurprisingly, the rich have gotten richer, and their preferred asset classes are the most protected by the tax code.Just one of many first-order economic...

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Monthly consumer inflation rate increases by most in 10 years; real wages decline, but real aggregate wages increase

 - by New Deal democratSeasonally adjusted consumer prices rose 0.6% in March. This was the biggest single month gain since June 2009, coming out of the Great Recession:Leaving aside the pandemic, since the 1980s recessions have only happened when CPI less energy costs (red) had risen to close to or over 3%/year, usually driven by increases in the price of oil by more than 40% YoY. Even with this month’s spike, YoY inflation ex-energy is only up 1.9%:Because in the first few months of the...

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Coronavirus dashboard for April 12: more good news, more bad news

 - by New Deal democratThe good news is, vaccinations work.Vaccine effect in the UK:By age group:Vaccine effect in France (in the face of an increasing case count):Vaccine effect even in Chile:While confirmed cases have gone up by 100% in Chile, deaths have “only” gone up by 50%. Even employing a 4 week lag, 4 weeks ago cases had gone up 50%, while deaths are up 33% from 4 weeks ago:Vaccine effect in the US:Now, the bad news.A 4th wave has clearly begun in the US, as confirmed cases are up...

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Weekly Indicators for April 5 – 9 at Seeking Alpha

 - by New Deal democratMy Weekly Indicators post is up at Seeking Alpha.The big news continues to be bifurcation between the currently unfolding Boom, fueled by the fire hose of monetary and fiscal stimulus, and the fallout in the long leading forecast based on the increase in interest rates as a result.As usual, clicking over an reading will bring you up to the virtual moment on the economic data, and reward me with a penny or two for my efforts.

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With a Booming economy comes at least transitory inflation: March producer prices

 - by New Deal democratOne of the economic subjects you are going to hear a lot about this year is inflation. We are recovering from a sharp if brief recession, and with the dual firehoses of fiscal and monetary stimulus, entering a Boom such as we have probably not seen in over 50 years.Unsurprisingly supplies of commodities and goods that had been cut back during the recession are going to be stretched thin and much competed for now, generating at least a brief burst of inflation.With that...

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