Looks Like Quicksand…But It’s Really Quickcement

| February 29, 2012

So, how do we do it…deleverage we mean? Uh, well, we need to spend less on cars and gas, and food, and housing and…healthcare, and buy less other things, and save more – oh, sorry about that last one, nothing left to save….. From Today’s Bloomberg Brief: The slow pace of deleveraging will continue to weigh on growth over […]

Gasoline Prices Are Pedal To The Metal……

| February 28, 2012

Here’s the scoop on gasoline (these charts go back to 1991)….prices are moving to the upside rapidly while demand is falling.  Hmm     Oh, and it’s official… gas prices have set an all time record for the month of February.

Is There A Doctor In The House!

| February 28, 2012

Bill Gross talking here…It’s the new normal, and a sign of the times as bank accounts and money market accounts basically yield nothing…and who gets the smelly end of the stick, yep… main street is the one taking it up the wazoo, yet again! Chart 1 shows that since 1981, which marks the beginning of the secular […]

Case-Shiller Real Estate Prices Continue To Fall Even With Record Low Interest Rates!

| February 28, 2012

There is no housing recovery as of yet….that according to Case Shiller. The Case Shiller housing index just showed a 8th consecutive month of home price declines. During this time we’ve had one of the most favorable winter buying periods ever, caused by favorable weather conditions accross the United States with one of the warmest winters on record (other then in Alaska). And let’s not forget the record low interest rates on mortgages. Anyone […]

A Sign Of The Times…Or Is It The New Normal?

| February 25, 2012

Part of this is demographics.  www.frontlinethoughts.com

And the Excitment Grows, But Over What!

| February 24, 2012

Wow…every one’s celebrating like it’s 1999, but it isn’t…try 2012? And…we continue to see record lows of Completed Houses for sale.  Anyone still want to celebrate about this? www.zerohedge.com

Consumer Confidence Continues To Rise

| February 24, 2012

We wouldn’t call this a surprise. Judging from the waiting time at the local restaurants, people are in a spending mood….and to boot we see a lot more construction going on, especially in light of a huge commercial and housing overhang.  Confidence among U.S. consumers rose in February as Americans continued more hopeful about economic growth. The Thomson Reuters/University […]

Housing Busts

| February 21, 2012

 A picture is worth a thousand words….

Moore’s Law May Be Called Atom’s Law On The New Frontier Of Technology

| February 20, 2012

Moore’s law states that the number of transistors that can be placed on an integrated circuit doubles every 18 months to two years, and it’s predicted to reach its limit with existing technology in 2020. But…Cutting the size of a transistor to a single atom may change that concept. Then again, it’s going to take a while to get a quantum […]

The Year Was 1953

| February 18, 2012

A New House Cost                  $10,000 Average Annual Income          $  4,000 One Gallon Gas                        $     .22 Average New Car                     $ 1,700  Loaf Of  Bread                         $     .16 First Class Stamp                     $     .03 Kodak Brownie Camera          $   13.00

Social Media, The Real Story

| February 16, 2012

Sounds plausible! As part of its social media survey Goldman Sachs asked respondents what is the main reason for people to “log on” to various social networking venues. The answer, by a wide margin, is the expected one: namely to spy, and to compare whether our lives are more boring, less glitzy and exciting, with […]

Some Food For Thought On Consumer Net Worth

| February 16, 2012

It looks like we’ve seen the bounce in consumer net worth and now as we head back the other way, reality may set in! Or… maybe not, it being an election year and all. www.frontlinethoughts.com

Discretionary Spending In The New Normal

| February 16, 2012

In the new normal let’s review some definitions: (Discretionary spending is a spending category through which governments can spend through an appropriations act.) This spending is optional as part of fiscal policy, in contrast to entitlement programs for which funding is mandatory. As the Budget Control Act cuts discretionary spending to a 50-year low (close to only […]

U.S. Debt In Terms Of GDP (Gross Domestic Product)

| February 15, 2012

So…. for Americans to get debt levels back to the happier times of 2002-03 levels, we’ll need about a 21% debt drop from the peak and a 17% drop from right where we are now.  Back to 2000 will take longer. We’re talking  many years for this to unwind.  www.frontlinethoughts.com

Government Dreamer’s

| February 13, 2012

Nobody on the planet is expecting GDP growth this high….2.7% never happens!  You heard it first here.  The smartest guys in the universe are much more conservative.  From Bridgewater: Recent better-than-expected news on the U.S. economy is unlikely to be the start of a healthy expansion. The uptick in economic growth has been fueled by […]

Gasoline Demand Is Plunging While Price Per Gallon Heads Higher

| February 10, 2012

Gasoline deliveries have in the past reflected recession or growth.  If so, the recent drop in retail gasoline deliveries may signal a sharp economic contraction dead ahead.  Or… a new normal because of rising fuel economy? Note that petroleum usage is back to 1997 level and gasoline usage is back to 2001 level. Moreover, two out of the last three weeks gasoline […]

California January Tax Revenue Well Below Estimate By $528 Million

| February 10, 2012

So, Governor Brown, what happened to the big recovery  you were expecting…and how about the giant consumer spending binge of the last two months fueled mostly on credit……just asking?  This is a disaster to the state budget. Spending up as reflected in sales taxes, while income is down, relected in income taxes. California collected $528 million less in […]

Federal Reserve Chairman Bernanke Talks About Real Estate Today

| February 10, 2012

Many parts of our economy now seem to be controlled (rigged) by the government.  If  housing would have been left alone, then things could have been cleaned up by now and a true bottom might have been reached, but instead this mess will drag on for years to come much like Japans nightmare! Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke said the […]

The Student Debt Plan Is A Bad One

| February 8, 2012

Student debt is rising to records with almost every government consumer report, and for a mulitude of reasons. They include steadily spiraling college costs, financial aid cutbacks at public universities and a weak economy to name a few.  And schools across the country are encouraging it because they need the money, most having expanded rapidly in the past few years to accommodate growing but seemingly unsustainable enrollments(let’s […]

One Man’s Pain, Is Another Man’s Gain! Well, Maybe…

| February 7, 2012

Bank of America Plaza, the tallest tower in the U.S. Southeast, was sold at a public auction today on the steps of the Fulton County Courthouse after landlord BentleyForbes missed its mortgage payments.  It was purchased for $436 million back in 2006, but off she goes for $235 million here in 2012.  The noteholder had a winning bid […]

Reality Check….

| February 7, 2012

Alaska produces about 10% of the oil in the U.S.  But one look at this chart will explain where we’ve been and where we’re going… in Alaska!

Consumer Credit Soars By Third Highest Ever

| February 7, 2012

So…the consumer confidence level is soaring right along with the consumer debt, and the savings rate is plunging.  Now we understand why the Federal reserve has been so worried lately.  The worry is that this consumer spending binge is totally unsustainable and likely to burn out soon! A report from the Labor Department today also showed there […]

The Real Basics On Today’s Economic Numbers

| February 3, 2012

Here is the latest from John Williams – Basic Economic Outlook Unaltered by Stronger Labor Data – January Jobs Reading Still at Levels of 11 Years Ago – January Unemployment: 8.3% (U.3), 15.1% (U.6), 22.5% (SGS) – Money Supply M3 Growth Is Picking Up www.shadowstats.com

Listen Up Congress!

| February 3, 2012

A Novel Idea….Let’s Call It…. The Congressional Common Sense Act of 2012 1. No Tenure / No Pension. A Congressman/woman collects a salary while in office and receives no pay when they’re out of office. 2. Congress (past, present & future) participates in Social Security. All funds in the Congressional retirement fund move to the Social Security system immediately. All […]

Record 1.2 Million People Fall Out Of Labor Force In One Month

| February 3, 2012

The devil’s in the details, read it and weep!   Non Farm Payrolls Soar By 243K, Unemployment Rate Drops To 8.3% Whopper of a NFP (non farm payroll) number, which prints at 243K, higher than the biggest forecast of 225K, on consensus expectations of 140K, the biggest jump since February 2009. But the devil’s in the […]

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