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Monday, October 22, 2012

Misc. economic stuff

I ran across a few things that are interesting.  Lets start with a long term velocity of money chart.


The velocity of money continues to fall.  The FED is pushing on the proverbial rope/string.  You can make money available, but you can't make them borrow it.  We are getting close to depression levels now and still headed the wrong way. Will it turn up or keep heading south?

Here is an interesting chart.


This chart is based on the LEI data.  The ratio is getting to levels rarely seen without being in a recession.  It is still headed down with the latest data.

Exports have grown to be about 13% of GDP these days.  Here is a look at what they are doing now.


I think that chart speaks for itself.  The growth in exports is coming to a screeching halt almost.

If anybody wonders why so many people feel like things suck, I think this next chart explains that pretty well.



Here is another look at the JOLT (Job Opening Labor Turnover Survey) survey in a different format then I have seen before.


The red and black lines are getting awful close to levels that have been consistent with downturns in employment.  There is probably a little more room to go though.  This is consistent with the Philly FED employment index I showed in Philly FED data where the index showed a turn in employment may be imminent.  

I think there are questions about the housing data.  Here is an interesting take on that situation.  I think the seasonal adjustments on a lot of things are somewhat screwed up because of the economic crash in 2008. Housing Starts and Permits: Euphoria May Be Premature I have read a number of articles from this author and he seems to be pretty unbiased.  He points out both the good and the bad in things he writes.  I also believe banks have been holding back inventory in hopes that reducing the number of houses on the market might increase prices.  That has been working, but I wonder if there will come a day when they will put many more houses back on the market.

Despite what the pundits on TV say about the economy picking up, there really is scant evidence of that.  Retail sales and housing seem to be the biggest source of excitement.  The IPhone5 and odd seasonal adjustments seem to be the source of the retail sales increases.  If you read the article on housing, you might have noticed the housing starts data everybody was raving about had the biggest seasonal adjustment since back in 2008 and well above last months.  There just are too many data items that point to the economy slowing, not accelerating. 


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