201605.24
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Something In Some of The Data?

New home sales surged in April to 619k SAAR. That was the highest rate, by far, since January 2008 more than eight years ago. It was also the biggest monthly gain in twenty-four years, which either suggests home sales are more than rebounding or casts doubt upon the quality of the data. Economists left no…

201605.24
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A Discrete Look At What Is Bigger Than All The World’s QE’s Combined

In this brave new banking world of impenetrable bureaucratic morass designed to keep us all from ourselves (slogan: don’t panic, there’s a lot of new math), there are new acronyms for just about anything. To regulators, some groups of letters mean a lot more than they might for banks, while investors, loosely defined, focus on…

201605.24
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Sector Snapshot: Dollar Rally Could Impact Leaders

The short term leadership is shifting as the dollar comes off its lows. Energy and materials had been leading the market during the recent period of dollar weakness. As the dollar found its footing over the last month, defensive sectors took the lead.  Whether this short term shift continues will likely depend on whether the…

201605.23
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More Global PMI Suspicion

While Markit’s economic sentiment surveys had been perhaps a touch more optimistic about the state of the world than others or other data, May has been a rough month for that comparison. Again, it’s not the absolute number calculated for each survey but rather the relative direction and, in these cases, the uniformity of that…

201605.23
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More PMI Suspicion

It is easy to make jokes about the BEA’s newfound respect for “residual seasonality” that in the words of CNBC’s chief economist makes each Q1 appear to be a “different economy altogether”, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t something to it if in a far different manner than the mainstream would ever contemplate. There clearly…

201605.23
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Bigger Than All The World’s QE’s Combined

So thoroughly destroyed is Japan’s economy that some of the numbers it produces are beyond comprehension, just staggering in any meaningful context. For example, Japan’s real GDP (SAAR) for Q1 2016 was ¥530 trillion (chained 2005). That compared to ¥447 trillion in Q1 1994. Over two decades and two additional years the Japanese economy has…

201605.23
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The Mirage of Irregular GDP And How Economists Get Away With It

Last week, Japan reported GDP growth of 1.7% in Q1. That was much better than expected and led to all the usual extrapolations about how bright the future is in Japan now that QQE is working (and NIRP since that was started during the quarter). In this devalued economic world of central banking for the…

201605.22
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A Closer Look: World Markets

After a volatile but stagnant final two months of the year, in which the market straddled the moving averages with no clear direction, the S&P 500 Index (IVV) broke down in early January, before stabilizing at the 1800 level. After testing and holding support in mid-February, the index rebounded to the 2100 level, breaking through both moving…

201605.20
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What Might It Mean If There Is Value At The Heart Of Utter Abstraction After All?

Despite the fact that the Fed has raised rates and therefore signaled via policy communication that their view of the economy is rather positive, both bond and stock prices don’t seem too caught up in the optimism no matter how much attention is paid to the shifting sands of monetary policy. Yesterday, the media was…

201605.20
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Chart Of The Week: GSG Outperforms Gold

Back in mid-April the chart of the week asked if commodities had made a bottom. The answer was maybe in that the short and intermediate term had turned positive but the long term monthly chart had yet to trigger a buy signal. That hasn’t changed by the way. If you read my Global Asset Allocation…