201801.02
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Bi-Weekly Economic Review: Housing Market Accelerates

The economy ended 2017 with current growth just slightly above trend. In general the reports of the last two weeks of the year were pretty good with housing a standout performer going into the new year. We are still trying to get past the impact – positive and negative – from the hurricanes a few…

201711.22
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Durable Goods Only About Halfway To Real Reflation

Durable goods were boosted for a second month by the after-effects of Harvey and Irma. New orders excluding those from transportation industries rose 8.5% year-over-year in October 2017, a slight acceleration from the 6.5% average of the four previous months. Shipments of durable goods (ex transportation) also rose by 8% last month. Even with that…

201710.25
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Subject To Gradation

Economic growth is subject to gradation. There is almost no purpose in making such a declaration, for anyone with common sense knows intuitively that there is a difference between robust growth and just positive numbers. Yet, the biggest mistake economists and policymakers made in 2014 was to forget that differences exist between even statistics all…

201708.25
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Durable Goods In July; Rinse, Repeat

The Census Bureau reported today updated estimates for Durable Goods in July 2017. Quite frankly, nothing has changed so minimal commentary is all that is required. The aircraft anomaly from last month faded, leaving total new orders of $229.2 billion (seasonally-adjusted). That is less than in May before the Boeing surge, and less even than…

201707.27
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Durable Boring

Durable goods orders were up a seasonally-adjusted 6.5% in the month of June 2017. Nearly all of that gain, however, was due to a jump (131%) in new orders for civilian aircraft. That meant demand for transportation equipment, a highly volatile segment, rose 19% in the month. Excluding all that, durable goods were up just…

201706.27
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The Best of Durable Goods

The status of durable goods in May 2017 appears to be up for debate. Once more there is major disagreement between the seasonally-adjusted figures and those unadjusted. In the estimation of the latter, May was a relatively good month for US manufacturing. Orders were up 7.3% year-over-year, the highest growth rate in nearly three years….

201705.26
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The Disappeared Economy

At the end of April 2015, the Commerce Department reported that unadjusted durable goods shipments (ex transportation) had totaled $177.6 billion in the month of March 2015. That represented just a half of one percent year-over-year gain, but at a crucial moment in economic history the plus sign was quite welcome for the attempt at…

201704.27
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Durable Goods Grow Indicating Lack of Growth

Total new orders for durable goods, including orders for new transportation equipment, were estimated to have been $238.7 billion in March 2017 on a seasonally-adjusted basis. That is 9% better than the most recent low point figured for June last year. It remains substantially less than the record high reached in July 2014, though an…

201703.24
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Durable Goods After Leap Year

New orders for durable goods (not including transportation orders) were up 1% year-over-year in February. That is less than the (revised) 4.4% growth in January, but as with all comparisons of February 2017 to February 2016 there will be some uncertainty surrounding the comparison to the leap year version. That would suggest that orders as…

201702.27
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Durable Goods Groundhog

If the economy is repeating the after-effects of the latest “dollar” events, and it does seem more and more to be that case, then analysis starts with identifying a range for where it might be in the repetition. New orders for durable goods (ex transportation) rose 4.3% year-over-year in January 2017 (NSA, only 2.4% SA),…