201502.27
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Chicago Really, Really Didn’t Cooperate

The last time I commented on the Chicago Business Barometer (formerly the Chicago PMI) it was over a one-month drop that was quickly erased. That violated a personal rule whereby I make every effort to ignore sentiment surveys as they both do not mean what they are taken for and are usually of dubious value….

201502.27
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Harmonized Inflation

France was the latest Eurozone country to announce officially an entrance into negative “inflation.” The French were very cautious, overly it might be said, to assure that such an outcome was not at risk of pushing that economy into “deflation.” Apparently, rigidity in wages from socialism is a factor as an economic buffer, though left…

201502.27
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GDP Is Speculative

I think the ongoing destruction in the Japanese Household sector demonstrates very well a specific shortcoming about economic statistics like GDP. The basic calculation of the particular measure that forms the headlines of almost all commentary is a comparison of the current quarter to the previous one. That right away opens the door to incongruities…

201502.26
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CPI Really Didn’t Cooperate

Say what you want about the CPI as it relates to inflation, the actual calculation is set up to measure essentially what GDP measures. That is why economists take their calculations of “inflation” as almost literal substitutes for actual economic activity. There is little denying the close correlation between economic activity especially in recession and…

201502.26
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Durable Goods Won’t Cooperate Either

Yesterday in trying describe Janet Yellen’s testimony to Congress about the economy, pundits apparently were forced to concede that the “data won’t cooperate”, thus leaving the economy in Yellen’s head to be wholly different than anything described elsewhere outside the media echoes. Today’s release of durable goods provides yet another data point that “will not…

201502.25
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Yellen Can’t Get Cooperation

Janet Yellen’s testimony concluded, no one gets any more clarity about what the FOMC actually thinks. However, that itself is in one sense an indication as she vacillated a little too much about making a firm commitment to either the recovery or “transitory” oil prices. QE3 ended months ago and we are seven years into…

201502.19 0

If Oil Prices Are Surprising, Then That Can Only Mean Demand

Crude oil futures have been quite volatile of late, particularly in the front months where even the slightest changes in expectations of whatever factor (rig counts, CEO comments, etc.) send WTI surging or tumbling by turn. Despite that, however, the outer years on the curve have seen not just more stability but a steady downward…

201502.18
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So Much Inconsistency

I sincerely look forward to the day, which I believe wholeheartedly will come, when scant attention is paid to whatever monetary officials make for official statements about official positions. The times being what they are, however, demand inconsistency be answered. That is especially true wherever the FOMC has taken not just to being the “lender…

201502.17
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Inaccuracy or Misconduct?

With new figures on Japan’s GDP released, it is becoming increasingly clear the disparity between what is supposed to happen and what has actually taken place. The main operative theory by which everything has been supported takes “aggregate demand” literally; in that all demand is essentially a perfect substitute for itself. In other words, monetary…

201502.13 0

Debt As Wealth; The Caution of Unfit Past Experience

With the G-20 recoiling itself back into the same kinds of mistakes made in the 1960’s, leading directly to the Great Inflation, we will have to take into account the other end of that, namely other forms of “stimulus.” With the global economy sinking, and worries about it beginning to resound beyond just inconvenient bears,…