200807.31
0
0

2nd Qtr US GDP Report

According to the Bureau of Economic Analysis, US gross domestic product – the output of goods and services produced by labor and property located in the United States – accelerated in the latest quarter, to a 1.9% annualized pace. The number, reported by the Commerce Department, was slightly below expectations, as economists had expected a…

200807.31
0
0

Initial Jobless Claims

The number of people filing for first time unemployment benefits rose sharply in the week ending July 26th, according to the US Department of Labor. Claims jumped 44,000, to 448,000, way above expectations. Economists were expecting 398,000 new claims for the week. Today’s reading is the highest reading since April 2003. Having witnessed extremely volatile…

200807.29
0
0

I’m Mad as Hell and I’ll Have to Stay that Way

In 1976, Howard Beale, a character in the movie Network, urged Americans to get up, go to their windows, open them and yell out, “I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take this anymore!” The preamble to Beale’s speech chronicles the problems of the 1970s: inflation, a falling dollar, unemployment, environmental degradation and…

200807.29
0
0

Will Speculators Get Credit for Driving Down Oil Prices?

A lot of economically illiterate people have blamed speculators for driving up oil prices. Will they now thank speculators for driving prices down? Crude Oil Long Change Short Change Large Speculator 198,019 -11,994 201,659 14,028 Commercial Hedger 641,265 -28,870 626,528 -60,219 Small Trader 55,452 -39,045 66,549 -33,718 Speculators can go short as well as long….

200807.24
0
0

Existing Home Sales

The US housing market continued its downward slide into June, as resales of homes and condos fell 2.6% for the month. Sales fell from a seasonally adjusted annualized rate of 4.98 million in May to 4.86 million in June. It is at its lowest level in 10 years. The number was well below expectations, as…

200807.24
0
0

Initial Jobless Claims

The number of people filing for first time unemployment benefits rose sharply in the week ending July 19th, according to the US Department of Labor. Claims jumped 34,000, to 406,000, way above expectations. Economists were expecting 380,000 new claims for the week. Today’s reading is the highest reading since late March. Having witnessed extremely volatile…

200807.24
0
0

Thank You Congress, May I have Another?!!

The House of Representatives passed the The American Housing and Foreclosure Prevention Act and President Bush will apparently sign it into law. Congratulations, taxpayer! You’ve just been stuck with the bill for bailing out not only “homeowners” who bought something they couldn’t afford, but also the institutions that loaned them the money to make the…

200807.23
0
0

Who was the Bartender?

At an allegedly private fundraiser, President Bush had this to say about the cause of the current economic problems: “Wall Street got drunk — that’s one of the reasons I asked you to turn off the TV cameras — it got drunk and now it’s got a hangover,” Bush said Friday, according to a video…

200807.23
0
0

Fed Beige Book

Reports from the twelve Federal Reserve Districts suggest that the pace of economic activity slowed somewhat since the last report. Five eastern Districts noted a weakening or softening in their overall economies, while Chicago characterized its economy as sluggish and Kansas City noted a moderation in growth. St. Louis said activity was stable and San…