Do Jobless Claims Point To Sluggish Recovery

By Arkadiusz Sieroń – Re-Blogged From Gold Eagle

Jobless claims paint a much grimmer picture than other pieces of economic data. So, the Fed (and other central banks) will remain dovish for years, which should support gold prices.

More and more economic reports show the beginning of the economic recovery in the U.S. Following the retail sales earlier last week, the Philly Fed Manufacturing Index turned from negative 43.1 in May to positive 27.5 in June, the first positive reading since February. And the Leading Economic Index rose 2.8 percent in May, after a record plunge in the two prior months.

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Alternate Unemployment Charts

By John Williams – Re-Blogged From Shadow Stats

The seasonally-adjusted SGS Alternate Unemployment Rate reflects current unemployment reporting methodology adjusted for SGS-estimated long-term discouraged workers, who were defined out of official existence in 1994. That estimate is added to the BLS estimate of U-6 unemployment, which includes short-term discouraged workers.

The U-3 unemployment rate is the monthly headline number. The U-6 unemployment rate is the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ (BLS) broadest unemployment measure, including short-term discouraged and other marginally-attached workers as well as those forced to work part-time because they cannot find full-time employment.

 

Public Commentary on Unemployment

Unemployment Data Series   subcription required(Subscription required.)  View  Download Excel CSV File   Last Updated: June 5th, 2020

May 2020 ShadowStats Alternate Unemployment is 34.0%, 36.5% net of BLS errors (Flash Nos. 1435 and 1439).

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Retail Sales Headlines Are A Complete Joke

By Dave Kranzler – Re-Blogged From Silver Phoenix

The stock market promoting mainstream media this morning reported “U.S. Retail Sales Rose Record 18% in May” (e.g. the Wall St Journal).  The S&P futures jumped from up 45 points to up 90 points.

But, as usual, the details are in the fine print of the report itself, and it’s apparent that nobody in the financial media bothered to look beyond the headlines.

In fact, the 18% rise is measured from April’s report, which was heavily depressed due to the shelter-in-place restrictions and the closure of many retail businesses. Funny thing about using the percentage change as the metric of measurement. If April had one dollar of retail sales and May had two dollars, the percentage gain would have been 100%.

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Restaurants Are in Need of a Helping Hand. Miso Robotics Is Offering Them One. Literally.

By Rachelle Dragani – Re-Blogged From Futurism

Flippy the robot flips cooks burgers to perfection.

Dining out looks pretty different these days. It’s natural to pine for the past, but many quick service restauranteurs are also looking ahead to a future where automation will be the key to drastically increasing their notoriously thin margins and allowing their workers to shine in the tasks no machine can do.

Robots in the workplace can get a bad rap—most people aren’t trying to get replaced by one. But the smartest and most innovative robotic companies aren’t designing teams of droids that send people packing. Instead, they’re crafting intelligent machines that work alongside workers, increasing efficiency and profits in the process.

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I Believe In The Stupidity Of The Stock Market

By David Haggith – Re-Blogged From Silver Phoenix

Gundlach: A ‘wave’ of layoffs is coming for $100,000/year white-collar jobs

American Purge: Scores of White People Lose Their Jobs and Have Their Lives Ruined For Not Supporting Anti-White Riots

Will Job Market From Hell Support Gold?

By Arkadiusz Sieroń – Re-Blogged From Gold Eagle

April job report shows a terrible US labor market. Coronavirus destroyed 20.5 million jobs, pushing the unemployment rate to almost 15 percent. How far does the number reflect reality – and what does it actually mean for the gold market?

Apocalypse in the US Labor Market

14.7 percent. Remember this value well, as it will go down in history. This is the official US unemployment rate for April calculated by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The unemployment rate soared from 3.5 percent in February and 4.4 percent in March. As the chart below shows, the spike is really historic, as such high level has not been seen in modern history.

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Rising Wages and More Bad News From Friday’s Horrific Payrolls Report

By Lisa Bellfuss – Re-Blogged From Barrons

The coronavirus pandemic claimed 20.5 million jobs in April as companies across America were forced to close and consumers stayed home to cap the disease’s spread.

The Labor Department said Friday that the job losses in April followed a downwardly-revised loss of 870,000 in March . So far, about one in five workers are unemployed.

Investors knew this would be one of the worst jobs reports in history . The decline in nonfarm payrolls for April is about three times as bad as the jobs lost over the entire Great Recession, with the depth of the losses not seen since the Great Depression. But the headline number was about in line with the 21 million job losses economists predicted, and the unemployment rate—at least on the surface—looks not as bad as feared. Stocks rose following the report, with the S&P 500 up about 1.1% and the Dow Jones Industrial Average higher by 1.2% in afternoon trading.

The question that remains is how quickly these laid off workers can be rehired and start spending again to restart the U.S. economy.

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Money Printing Is The New Mother’s Milk Of Stocks

By Michael Pento – Re-Blogged From Silver Phoenix

My friend Larry Kudlow always says that Profits are the mother’s milk of stocks. That used to be true when we had a real economy. But sadly, that is no longer factual because we now have a global equity market that is totally controlled by central banks. To prove this point, let’s look at the last few years of earnings. During the year 2018, the EPS growth for the S&P 500 was 20%; yet the S&P 500 Index was down 7% over that same time-frame.

Conversely, during 2019, the S&P 500 EPS growth was a dismal 1%; yet the Index surged by nearly 30%. What could possibly account for such a huge divergence between EPS growth and market performance? We need only to view Fed actions for the simple answer: it was the degree to which our central bank was willing to falsify asset prices.

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Thai Elephants, Out of Work Due to Coronavirus

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Fiercest Economic Collapse In History Is Best Month For Stock Market

By David Haggith – Re-Blogged From Silver Phoenix

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times. April closed as the best month for the US stock market since the V-shaped recovery that followed the Black Monday stock market crash of 1987. April also delivered the deepest, broadest economic collapse of any month in history.

The economic collapse was simultaneously global. What is written here about the US can pretty well be said for all nations in the world. The collapse crushed jobs, personal income, consumer spending, consumer sentiment, car sales, and general economic activity more than any month in the history of the nation. Some of those sharpest declines happened in March, but April relentlessly drove to to greater depths. But stocks rose.

Immigration SUSPENSION for Visa Workers

Re-Blogged From RightWingAmericans.Com

President Donald Trump caused outrage among Democrats on Monday when he announced that his administration would protect American workers by suspending immigration into the United States while the country battles an economic crisis.

According to a New York Times report, published on Tuesday morning, the president’s plan could come into effect in the next few days when he is expected to sign an executive order. Sources familiar with the plan, according to the Times, say that the executive order would stop the United States approving any new applications from foreigners intending to live and worked in the United States. It would shut down the illegal immigration system completely for as long as the president deems the executive order to be necessary.

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What’s Causing Job Loss

By Willis Eschenbach – Re-Blogged From WUWT

I’ve read claims on the web that the job losses in the US were due to the virus itself, and to the fear of the virus making people cut back on activities. The claims are that the job loss is more from that, and not so much a result of the American Lockdown. So I thought I’d take a look at the weekly new claims for unemployment insurance. Of course, the different states have been hit differently by the changes. Here’s the graph of weekly new unemployment claims for one of the least affected states, Oregon.

Figure 1. Weekly new unemployment claims, Oregon, since 1999. “Usual” refers to the one-year period preceding the record rise.

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Does Gold Really Care Whether Coronavirus Brings Us Deflation Or Inflation?

By Arkadiusz Sieroń – Re-Blogged From Gold Eagle

One of the many bothering issues about the coronavirus crisis, is whether it will turn out to be inflationary or deflationary. What do both of these scenarios mean for gold ahead?

US Inflation Rate Declines in March

Many people are afraid that the coronavirus crisis will spur inflation. After all, the increased demand for food and hygiene products raised the prices of these goods. Moreover, the supply-side disruptions can reduce the availability of many goods, contributing to their increasing prices.

On the other hand, the current crisis results not only from a negative supply shock, but also from a negative demand shock. As a result of uncertainty, people cling to cash and forego unnecessary expenses. In addition, social distancing means reduced household spending on many goods and services, which exerts deflationary pressure. The most prominent example is crude oil, whose price has temporarily dropped to just $20 a barrel (although this was partly due to the lack of agreement between OPEC and Russia). Lower fuel prices will translate into lower CPI inflation rate. Entrepreneurs, especially those with large stocks of goods, will probably lower prices to encourage shopping. Moreover, the appreciation of the US dollar means lower prices of imported goods.

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Inflationary And Insolvency Implosion Of The Bond Market

We are all praying for the Wuhan virus to die. But there is something the virus can actually “cure” itself: deflation. I put the word cure in quotes because it’s not an actual issue in reality. Low inflation and disinflation are actually great conditions to enjoy and help an economy thrive. Increasing the purchasing power of consumers is something that should be cherished and targeted goal. Increases in productivity, along with a strong currency, raises your standard of living. In sharp contrast, Central Banks think any rate of inflation that is less than 2% is a deadly economic disease that must be vanquished faster than the Wuhan virus.

Many Austrian economists believed the money printing that occurred during the Great Recession of 2008 would engender massive inflation. That indeed turned out to be the case; but only with asset price inflation. The Fed’s balance sheet expansion left Consumer Price Inflation (CPI) far behind. This is because the Fed bailed out banks, not consumers. Mr. Bernanke printed trillions of new dollars to purchase bad assets from banks’ balance sheets. Thus, it gave banks credit in exchange for those assets; and that base money was primarily parked back at the Federal Reserve. In other words, there was a huge increase in Fed credit but not in loans that would have led to an increase in the broader monetary aggregates—the kind of money supply increase that leads to rising CPI. What money that was lent out arrived directly to Wall Street by the process of banks selling MBS, ABS and other troubles assets and then using that credit to buy more bonds and stocks. The rich got richer and the lower classes were, for the most part, left out in a big way.

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US Sheds 701K Jobs, Ending a Record-Long Hiring Streak

Two-thirds of the job cuts during March were at restaurants, hotels and casinos…

US Sheds 701K Jobs, Ending a Record-Long Hiring Streak

A pedestrian walks by The Family Barbershop, closed due to a Gov. Gretchen Whitmer executive order, in Grosse Pointe Woods, Mich./AP Photo

A record-long streak of U.S. job growth ended suddenly in March after nearly a decade as employers cut 701,000 jobs because of the viral outbreak that’s all but shut down the U.S. economy.

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Bills Are Coming Due

By Associated Press – Re-Blogged From Headline Wealth

The outbreak of the coronavirus has dealt a shock to the global economy with unprecedented speed. Following are developments Friday related to the global economy, the work place and the spread of the virus.


UNDER REVIEW: This week, the U.S. reported that a staggering 3.3 million Americans applied for unemployment benefits last week, a five-fold increase over the last high sent in 1982. On Friday, President Donald Trump signed a $2.2 trillion aid package into law. Few believe it will be the last in the aftermath of this viral outbreak. Credit ratings agencies are taking note of the financial standing of the U.S., and other nations.

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Record 3.3 Million Americans Apply for Unemployment Benefits

By Associated Press – Re-Blogged From Headline Wealth

Nearly 3.3 million Americans applied for unemployment benefits last week — almost five times the previous record set in 1982 — amid a widespread economic shutdown caused by the coronavirus.

The surge in weekly applications was a stunning reflection of the damage the viral outbreak is inflicting on the economy. Filings for unemployment aid generally reflect the pace of layoffs.

Layoffs are sure to accelerate as the U.S. economy sinks into a recession. Revenue has collapsed at restaurants, hotels, movie theaters, gyms and airlines. Auto sales are plummeting, and car makers have closed factories. Most such employers face loan payments and other fixed costs, so they’re cutting jobs to save money.

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Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup #400

The Week That Was: February 22, 2020, Brought to You by www.SEPP.org

By Ken Haapala, President, Science and Environmental Policy Project

Quote of the Week: “I never guess. It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories, instead of theories to suit facts.” – Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. [H/t Eric Wagner]

Number of the Week: £108.5 million (about $140 million) in 2018

The Scientific Method: There appears to be no clear, widely accepted definition of science or the scientific method. Professor of Applied Mathematics and philosopher Christopher Essex considers science to be an adventure. A long game of generations and part of the ascent of Man. Not just a fad invented in the 17th century. In an unpublished paper, “The Scientific Adventure,” he wrote for the 100th anniversary of Einstein’s 1905 discoveries, he stated:

“Others try to embrace it as a recipe. They say, to be scientific, do this, then do that, but not the other way around. They talk of the scientific method as if there is just one; as if scientific discovery were clean, orderly and uncontroversial, supervised by grizzled elders of authority. But the search for scientific discovery is anything but. It is messy, contentious, factional, but also wondrous, inspired, and above all serendipitous. It is human.”

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Glub Of Recession Circling The Drain

By David Haggith – Re-Blogged From Silver Phoenix

Who says there is no recession anywhere in sight? It depends on where you are looking. In short, manufacturing remains in recession; corporate profits remain in recession; freight remains deep in recession; Carmageddon remains in recession; and the Retail Apocalypse remains a recession for brick-and-mortar stores, while employment — the last holdout — is now also turning downward.

The manufacturing recession that everyone acknowledges as having begun last summer continues:

What To Make Of The Bureau Of Lying Statistics’ Contradicting Jobs Reports

Employment has been the one stickler in my recession prediction for 2019, and finding a trustworthy measurement from the government’s statistics is like finding a virgin in a brothel. Depending on which official figures you look at, employment has refused to fall and new jobs are strong … or they stink.

We recently got two extremely conflicting reports from the same government agency that reveal, AGAIN, how dubious the official numbers from the government are. Because one report was stellar, the stock market blasted off like a rocket when it heard the news. Because the other report of the same item was abysmal, the stock market ignored it. The Fed, however, did not ignore it, and carries it in its official charts.

What If We Banned Frac’ing?

By David Middleton – Re-Blogged From WUWT

Note: This is a politically charged post. If you don’t like such posts, don’t bother reading it.

What would happen if frac’ing was banned?

The short answer: We all freeze in the dark. For the long answer, read the US Chamber of Commerce paper.

The 2016 report was intended to lay out the implications of reckless, if not treasonous, energy policy demands of politicians and activists.

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Macy’s to Close 125 Stores as It Seeks to Reinvent Itself

By Associated Press – Re-Blogged From Headline Wealth

Macy’s said Tuesday it is closing 125 of its least productive stores and cutting 2,000 corporate jobs as the struggling department store tries to reinvent itself in the age of online shopping.

The store closures represent about one fifth of Macy’s current total. They include about 30 that are in the process of closing and account for $1.4 billion in annual sales.

Macy’s didn’t specify how many jobs would be lost at the shuttered stores.

The corporate jobs will be shed as Macy’s closes its offices in Cincinnati and San Francisco, leaving New York as its sole corporate headquarters. Macy’s said that the 2,000 jobs to be lost account for about 9% of its corporate workforce.

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GDP Is In…And Recession Is Out…Or Is It?

By David Haggith – Re-Bloggred From Gold Eagle

Having predicted last year that a recession would begin in the summer of 2019 and that it would likely start with a major repo crisis, I am now proven wrong by 2019’s fourth-quarter GDP. If the repo crisis that started in the final week of summer had actually been the start of a recession, we would have seen fourth-quarter GDP go negative. Instead, it came in at 2.1% growth.

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Estimating The Shape Of The Coming Crisis

With a recession become increasingly certain and the end of the expansionary phase of the credit cycle in sight, we can expect a periodic systemic crisis to be upon us soon. The question arises as to how serious it will be, given that despite the massive injections of extra base money since the Lehman crisis, signs of liquidity shortages are already re-emerging in financial markets.

We don’t know what will trigger the crisis, but a likely candidate is foreign selling of US dollars combining with a collapse in the US government’s finances. Perhaps the coronavirus will turn out to be a black swan event, but the underlying conditions for an economic and monetary crisis already exist.

This article looks at alternative outcomes. It concludes that the current situation bears a worrying resemblance to the collapse of John Law’s Mississippi scheme exactly 300 years ago. The key to understanding why this is so is because of the link forged between asset prices and fiat currencies. One fails, and they both fail, more rapidly than the most bearish bear might expect.

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Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup #394

The Week That Was: January 11, 2020, Brought to You by www.SEPP.org

By Ken Haapala, President, Science and Environmental Policy Project

Quote of the Week: “The only thing more dangerous than ignorance is arrogance.” – Albert Einstein

Number of the Week: 79% up 16% in two years

Green Arrogance: Regardless of the political system, or ideology, arrogance can lead to destructive actions contrary to the interests of the public. History produces many examples, including major wars. We are seeing examples of arrogance in so called “green” laws and regulations which are actually contrary to nature. Humans can modify and use nature for their benefit but cannot regulate it. Unfortunately, politicians frequently ignore limits of power when passing sweeping laws and regulations. This week, three examples of arrogance, or hubris, are evident: 1) bushfires in Australia; 2) closing the Crescent Dunes power plant in Nevada; and 3) the continuation of a 2.5 gigawatt (GW) off-shore wind project off the coast of Virginia Beach ordered by the governor of Virginia.

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Weaker Than Expected Payrolls

By Arkadiusz Sieroń – Re-Blogged From Gold Eagle

The U.S. created 145,000 jobs in December, following an increase of 256,000 in November (after a downward revision), as the chart below shows. The nonfarm payrolls came below expectations, as the analysts forecasted 165,000 new jobs. The gains were widespread, but with a leading role of retail trade (+41,200), leisure and hospitality (+40,000), and education and health services (+36,000). Manufacturing again cut jobs (-12,000), which means that industrial recession has not ended. Mining and transportation and warehousing also dismissed workers.

Chart 1: U.S. nonfarm payrolls (green bars, left axis, change in thousands of persons) and the unemployment rate (red line, right axis, %) from January 2015 to December 2019.

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Law Could Upend California’s Gig Economy

By Associated Press – Re-Blogged From Headline Wealth

California law that makes it harder for companies to treat workers as independent contractors takes effect next week, forcing small businesses in and outside the state to rethink their staffing.

The law puts tough restrictions on who can be independent contractors or freelancers rather than employees.

Supporters say it addresses inequities created by the growth of the gig economy, including the employment practices of ride-sharing companies like Uber and Lyft that use contractors.

But the union-backed legislation went far beyond demanding that drivers be treated like employees. In theory, it could extend to everything from hospice and home healthcare workers to babysitters to newspaper employees and even (depending on the laws) workers in the sex trade..

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How Big Government Hurts Women

Government-mandated employee perks might sound like a good way to help out working women, but, in reality, these programs do more harm than good. European women are already paying the price, and American women might be next. Carrie Lukas, President of Independent Women’s Forum, explains how keeping the government out of the workplace goes a long way toward keeping women in it.

Please watch the VIDEO.

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Dumber than Schist

By David Middleton – Re-Blogged From WUWT

WARNING

This post is extremely political. If you are offended by hardball politics, stop reading here. Comments to the effect that you don’t like political posts or are offended political incorrectness and moderately insensitive language will be mercilessly ridiculed.

Fauxcahontas is truly a “stupid and futile gesture”…

A climate denier-in-chief sits in the White House today. But not for long

Elizabeth Warren

The next president must rejoin the Paris agreement and show the world that the United States is ready to lead on the international stage again

President Trump has now fulfilled his disastrous promise to pull the United States out of the Paris Climate Agreement. The agreement represents decades of work by both Democratic and Republican administrations to achieve a common goal: bringing every country of the world together to tackle the climate crisis, the existential threat of our time.

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U.S. Job Openings Drop to 1-1/2-Year Low

By Reuters – Re-Blogged From IJR

FILE PHOTO: Recruiters and job seekers are seen at a job fair in Golden, Colorado, June 7, 2017. REUTERS/Rick Wilking/File Photo
FILE PHOTO: Recruiters and job seekers are seen at a job fair in Golden, Colorado, June 7, 2017. REUTERS/Rick Wilking/File Photo

U.S. job openings fell to a 1-1/2-year low in August and hiring slipped, suggesting employment growth was slowing mostly because of ebbing demand for labor.

Job openings, a measure of labor demand, dropped by 123,000 to a seasonally adjusted 7.05 million in August, the lowest level since March 2018, the Labor Department said in its monthly Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey, or JOLTS, on Wednesday.

It was the third straight monthly drop in job openings, which have been trending lower this year since scaling an all-time high of 7.6 million in late 2018. The job openings rate fell to 4.4% in August from 4.5% in July.

Hiring decreased by 199,000 jobs to 5.8 million in August, led by declines in the private sector. The hiring rate slipped to 3.8% from 3.9% in July.

Nonfarm payrolls rose by 136,000 jobs in September, down from 168,000 in August, the government reported last Friday. The three-month average gain in private employment fell to 119,000, the smallest since July 2012, from 135,000 in August.

Job growth has averaged 161,000 per month this year, compared to a monthly gain of 223,000 in 2018. Job gains remain above the roughly 100,000 per month needed to keep up with growth in the working-age population. The unemployment rate fell to near a 50-year low of 3.5% in September from 3.7% in August.

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The Relentless Road to Recession

By David Haggith – Re-Blogged From The Great Recession Blog 

“Show me the data,” demand those who cannot see a recession forming all around them and who keep parroting what they are told about the economy being strong because it is what they want to believe; yet, the data look like an endless march through a long summer down the road to recession.

And that is what you are going to get in this article, a seemingly endless parade of data along the recessionary road. This is for the data hounds.

As we end the summer of our discontent when few would deny that most economic talk turned toward recession and, as we begin the time when I said the stock market appears it may fulfill my prognostication of another October surprise, it’s time to lay out — again — the latest data that support my summer recession prediction. We’ll have to wait until next year for the government to officially declare a recession if one did start in September. (Yes, September is a summer month.) In the meantime, the data stream is a long line of confirmation.

Great Recession 2.0 is Obscured but Here!

US City With Highest Min Wage Signals a ‘Tipping Point,’ Businesses Uncertain on How They’ll ‘Survive It’

The continued hike in the minimum wage in one California city — which has the highest in the U.S. — has local business owners worried.

The city of Emeryville, California, garnered the title of being the highest minimum wage city in the United States when the city saw a minimum wage hike in July from $15 to $16.30, according to The Wall Street Journal. Due to the city’s high cost of living in the Bay Area region, supporters of the wage hike saw it necessary.

Thomas White/Reuters

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It’s Been A Great Recession For A Few

By David Haggith – Re-Blogged From Silver Phoenix

This month the economic expansion brought to you by your Federal Reserve and by US government largess becomes the longest expansion in the history of the United States! That’s something, right? Something? Let’s take an honest look at what we now call great.

By “the longest expansion” we mean the longest period in which US GDP has been growing without a recession. Now, that’s something to crow about, right?

Not so fast for many reasons. It’s also been the most anemic expansion on the books, and it’s not too hard to see why it’s been the longest, having nothing at all to do with a great economy. It has cost us far more than any expansion (by an order of magnitude) because we’ve piled up ten times the national debt over any amount we accumulated during previous expansions. (I’ve said before, it’s easy to let the “good times” roll when you are buying it all on the company credit card.) We also quadrupled the size of the Fed’s balance sheet. That didn’t cost anything, but we sure didn’t get much bang for the buck! We actually got less bang than in any previous expansion!

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Deutsche Bank Starts Cutting 18,000 Jobs in $8.3 Billion Reinvention

By Thomson Reuters – Re-Blogged From Newsmax

Deutsche Bank laid off staff in Asia on Monday as it began cutting 18,000 jobs as part of a 7.4 billion euro ($8.3 billion) “reinvention” set to tip Germany’s largest lender into yet another annual loss.

In a retreat from a long-held ambition to make its struggling investment bank, which employs 38,000 people, a force on Wall Street, Deutsche Bank said on Sunday it would scrap its global equities operations and cut some in fixed income.

Deutsche Bank Starts Cutting 18,000 Jobs in $8.3 Billion Reinvention

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10 Big Steps Down The Road To Recession

By David Haggith – Re-Blogged From Gold Eagle

First, a decline in manufacturing, and then a slump in service industries, now a broad-spectrum inversion of the yield curve hitting its most critical metric this week, unemployment finally starting to rise again, a one-year relentless housing decline across most of the nation and the world, carmageddon pressing car dealers to offer big incentives once again just to hold sales flat, shipping everywhere sinking rapidly, broadly deteriorating general business conditions, plus tariff troubles for the US throughout the world — all of these economic stresses have gotten remarkably worst in just the past month.

A Different Kind Of Wage Inflation Heralds This Cycle’s End

By John Rubino – Re-Blogged From Dollar Collapse

Towards the end of long expansions (this one is the longest on record) things get tight. Factories operate flat-out and start raising prices. Good workers become harder to find and companies start competing for them with higher wages and other perks.

This story is about the “other perks” which, because they don’t show up in wages aren’t directly inflationary. But they do cost money, which means they shrink corporate profits nearly as much as would a big wage increase. From today’s Wall Street Journal:

Factories Tire of Wage Wars; Give Fridays Off, Spiff Up Bathrooms

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Bubble, Bubble, Double Trouble

By David Stockman – Re-Blogged From Gold Eagle

The Donald was at it again in Wisconsin this weekend, reiterating his patented boast that the US economy is booming like never before.

We’re now the No. 1 economy anywhere in the world and it’s not even close,” he said on Saturday night at a rally in Green Bay, Wisconsin.

“At the end of six years, you’re going to be left with the strongest country you’ve ever had,” he said.

We beg to differ, profoundly. The debt- and bubble-freighted US economy is actually running out of gas after a long, artificial cycle of tepid expansion; and so far the Donald’s Trade Wars and fiscal borrowing binge have only piled more debilitating baggage on America’s deeply impaired economy.

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America’s Elderly Are Twice as Likely to Work Now Than in 1985

By Bloomberg – Re-Blogged From Newsmax

Just as single-income families began to vanish in the last century, many of America’s elderly are now forgoing retirement for the same reason: They don’t have enough money.

Rickety social safety nets, inadequate retirement savings plans and sky high health-care costs are all conspiring to make the concept of leaving the workforce something to be more feared than desired.

For the first time in 57 years, the participation rate in the labor force of retirement-age workers has cracked the 20 percent mark, according to a new report from money manager United Income.

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Will The Fed Cut Its Interest Rate Forecast

By Arkadiusz Sieroń – Re-Blogged From Gold Eagle

Some important pieces of the US economic reports, including the latest nonfarm payrolls, have disappointed recently. May indicators (including the leading ones) have hit a soft patch it seems. Will that push the Fed to downgrade its dot-plot or fine-tune the monetary policy mix anyhow? Can gold jump in reaction to the Wednesday’s FOMC policy meeting?

February Payrolls Disappoint

U.S. nonfarm payrolls plunged in February, falling way short of expectations. The economy added just 20,000 jobs last month, following a rise of 311,000 in January (after an upward revision) and significantly below 172,000 forecasted by the economists. The number was the smallest increase since September 2017, as one can see in the chart below. On an annual basis, the pace of job creation increased slightly last month to 1.8 percent.

Chart 1: Monthly changes in employment gains (red bars, in thousands of persons) from February 2014 to February 2019

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More Evidence That The Bears Have It Dead Right

By David Haggith – Re-Blogged From The Great Recession Blog

In my last article, “The Bears Have it Right: Economy went Polar Opposite of Bullish Predictions,” I laid out my first prediction for 2019 — a recession by summer. I don’t want the following revelations and facts that I have since come across to get lost in comments I recently posted to that article, so I’m bringing them all together here.

How bad was 2018?

The Wall Street Journal just said it was “one of Buffett’s worst years ever.

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Amazon Dumps NYC Headquarters and Its Promised 25,000 Jobs

By Associated Press – Re-Blogged From Newsmax

Amazon.com Inc. abruptly dropped plans Thursday for a big new headquarters in New York that would have brought 25,000 jobs to the city, reversing course after politicians and activists objected to the nearly $3 billion in tax breaks promised to what is already one of the world’s richest, most powerful companies.

“We are disappointed to have reached this conclusion — we love New York,” the online giant from Seattle said in a blog post announcing its withdrawal.

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A Wave Of Retail Stores Close

By Mac Slavo – Re-Blogged From Freedom Outpost

Another economic red flag has appeared and its the closure of retail stores.  According to a new report detailing the precarious situation of the current economy, there is “no light at the end of the tunnel” as the closure of brick and mortar stores will continue.

Coresight Research released an outlook of 2019 store closures Wednesday, saying, there’s “no light at the end of the tunnel,” according to several reports, including one from Yahoo News.  According to the global market research firm’s report, a mere six weeks into 2019, United States retailers have announced 2,187 closings of physical stores.  That’s up 23 percent compared to last year. Those closings include 749 Gymboree stores251 Shopko store,  and 94 Charlotte Russe locations.

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Modern Monetary Theory: A Cargo Cult

By Keith Weiner – Re-Blogged From Gold Eagle

Newly elected Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez recently said that Modern Monetary Theory (MMT) absolutely needed to be “a larger part of our conversation.” Her comment shines a spotlight on MMT. So what is it? According to Wikipedia, it is:

“a macroeconomic theory that describes the currency as a public monopoly and unemployment as the evidence that a currency monopolist is restricting the supply of the financial assets needed to pay taxes and satisfy savings desires.”

It is uncontroversial to say that the Federal Reserve has a monopoly on the dollar. So let’s look at the second proposition. Unemployment, MMT holds, is evidence that the supply of dollars is restricted.

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Dem Lawmakers Push for $15 Minimum Wage Will Have Disastrous Consequences

By Rachel Greszler – Re-Blogged From Blabber Buzz

House Democrats are looking to double the minimum wage, with little eye to the consequences.

Led by Virginia Democrat Bobby Scott, House Democrats introduced the Raise the Wage Act, which would more than double the federal minimum wage from $7.25 to $15 per hour by the year 2024.

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Teach Your Kids to Communicate

Go to the profile of Greg Satell   By – Re-Blogged From Medium

The jobs of the future don’t exist yet — but we know they’ll require some serious social skills

An education is supposed to prepare you for the future. Traditionally, that meant learning certain facts and skills, like when explorers arrived in America or how to calculate an answer using long division. Today, curricula have shifted to focus on a more global and digital world, engaging students in subjects like cultural history, basic computing skills, and writing code.

Yet, the challenges our kids will face will be much different than those of our generation. Most of what a typical student learns in school today will no longer be relevant by the time they graduate from college. A study at the University of Oxford found that 47 percent of today’s jobs will be eliminated over the next 20 years.

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