201807.12 4

It’s Taking Too Long, The Boom Didn’t Boom

At some point, the boom had to have boomed. We are moving into the past tense for all this now, inflation hysteria almost certainly tucked away into the economic ledger alongside four other false dawns. Data is coming in for June 2018, meaning half of this year already recorded and analyzed. It’s not what it…

201805.31
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Ptolemy Strikes Again

Perhaps it is revenge for 2015’s residual seasonality breakout. Or maybe it is just being celebrated as delicious irony. Did the BEA just take revenge on the Fed? In early 2015, first the Philadelphia branch of the Federal Reserve and then its San Francisco arm both published essays essentially accusing the BEA of being unaware…

201805.23
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It’s Not The Minutes, It’s The Months and Years

It’s the kind of thing you’re supposed to overlook and not think too deeply about. Recall the basis of inflation hysteria: the economy was poised to take off and do so convincingly; that plus the ubiquitous LABOR SHORTAGE!!! meant that wages then inflation were going to break out higher; accelerating consumer prices were then to…

201805.07
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What Really Happened In Europe

The primary example of globally synchronized growth has been Europe. Nowhere has more hope been attached to shifting fortunes. The Continent, buoyed by the persistence of central bankers like Mario Draghi, has not just accelerated it is actually booming. Or so they say. Last September, politicians were lining up to confidently declare as much, often…

201805.03
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Someone Is On Drugs, Alright

For the second straight quarter, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) estimates US productivity growth was less than 1%. That’s not surprising given the weakening in output as measured by GDP, the data reported by the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA). Productivity is the bridge between the BLS’s labor numbers and the more general economic…

201804.11
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Inflation Hysteria Takes A Chinese Hit

Today is inflation day, as can happen on the occasional month. The US CPI came in without signs of acceleration despite the relinquishment of the Verizon effect on the statistical bucket. Financial markets are unenthused by all this, but you might not know why. The spread between 5- and 30-year Treasury yields, as well as…

201804.10
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The Boom Takes Another Big Hit

The Congressional Budget Act of 1974 requires the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) to produce and release its economic projections and assumptions every year. Typically, the CBO does so under initial assumptions each January. Those estimates are then revised, if necessary, later in the year with more complete information. This past January, however, the release was…

201804.09
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Genesungshysterie

Early in the morning on October 7, 2016, during Asian trading the British pound experienced a flash crash. Driven down 6.1% in a matter of two minutes, it left the rest of the markets stunned. The usual whispers of a “fat finger” abounded, as did the recognition of how unabated computer traded sell orders were…

201804.06
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COT Blue: Which BOND ROUT!!!! Was It Really?

The only way to change the meaning of a word like “transitory” is to put together a constant string of temporary factors that when taken individually keep with the traditional definition but in combination completely obliterate it. Something happens to knock inflation off track, and then just as soon as that one thing is about…

201803.20
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Choosing the Right Curves

The background for inflation hysteria was pretty simple. Globally synchronized growth meant acceleration in the US economy which would raise demand for labor. The unemployment rate, faulty as it has been, suggests that any further increase in labor utilization would just have to pressure wages – the competition for workers rises as the marginal supply…