Posted by Larry Doyle on May 3rd, 2011 9:17 AM |
As we inch our way along the economic landscape we witness more comparisons to the economic malaise of The Great Depression. I take no pleasure in writing on these topics and of these comparisons but they are a simple and regrettably a largely unspoken reality.
You do not need to read Sense on Cents to be aware that our wages and incomes are not keeping pace with the cost of living. You do need to read economic blogs, though, because the reality of our income situation and the impact on real consumer spending habits is often left untouched by major media outlets.
Although Ben Bernanke would define the current inflationary and economic trends as transitory, perhaps he should try to explain that to the couple that is struggling to keep their head above water. Where do we see growing evidence of these struggles. Let’s dive inside The 9 Places Where Inflation Is Crushing Us to learn the following startling statistic…, (more…)
Posted by Larry Doyle on August 23rd, 2010 7:56 AM |
Do you increasingly feel that you are not receiving the full story in terms of our overall economy? Do you feel as if the ‘political class’ in Washington is speaking a different language than the ‘working class’ in the rest of the country? Do you scratch your head as to why economic releases are often immediately panned and quickly thereafter revised? (Case in point, the initial release of 2nd quarter GDP on July 30th was quickly thereafter projected to be halved.) For all of the above reasons, more and more Americans are relying on independent economic research and analysis. Two of my favorites in this camp (aside from Sense on Cents, of course!!) are John Williams of Shadow Government Statistics and Rick Davis of Consumer Metrics Institute.
I recently highlighted Williams’ work in writing, What Is the Real Rate of Unemployment in the United States? In that commentary, I referenced Williams as he had stated:
That began a lengthy process of exploring the history and nature of economic reporting and in interviewing key people involved in the process from the early days of government reporting through the present.
For a number of years I conducted surveys among business economists as to the quality of government statistics (the vast majority thought it was pretty bad), and my results led to front page stories in the New York Times and Investors Business Daily, considerable coverage in the broadcast media and a joint meeting with representatives of all the government’s statistical agencies. Despite minor changes to the system, government reporting has deteriorated sharply in the last decade or so. (LD’s emphasis) (more…)
Posted by Larry Doyle on July 27th, 2010 6:10 AM |
2nd quarter earnings are certainly coming in stronger than expected, and our equity markets are having a solid rebound this month. Are these earnings reflective of real underlying strength in the economy or corporations that are now operating more efficiently?
Has our economy hit a soft patch? Is it declining? Are we rebounding from a recent downturn? Might we experience a real double dip?
The initial reading of 2nd quarter GDP is due this Friday. To say that it is highly anticipated would be a huge understatement. Consensus expectations for 2nd quarter GDP are running between +2.5% and +3%. Recall that the final 1st quarter report registered a +2.7% reading.
A Sense on Cents favorite has a decidedly different view of 2nd quarter economic activity and the subsequent GDP. (more…)
Posted by Larry Doyle on July 20th, 2010 6:28 AM |
I have told many people that I equate our current economic situation to a serious case of ‘walking pneumonia.’ If you have suffered from that dreadful malady, as I have, you can appreciate my sentiments. While we are going to live, and will move on from our current condition, the question everybody wants to know is how long will this sluggish, sickening episode last?
I wish I was so prescient as to be able to pinpoint the month and year when our economy may return to real vitality. I am neither that smart nor that egotistical. I do strongly believe, though, that we are looking at a number of years of continued underperformance. (more…)
Posted by Larry Doyle on June 10th, 2010 8:32 AM |
For those inclined to monitor the pulse of the American consumer, please make it a habit to regularly visit the Consumer Metrics Institute. Rick Davis and team do fabulous, cutting edge, and real-time analysis of consumer activity in our domestic economy. Recall that Rick is already way ahead of the curve in calling for -1.5% 2nd quarter GDP and has an early call for a -2% 3rd quarter GDP.
What has Rick seen over the last ten days? Continued contraction in consumer spending. Let’s navigate. (more…)
Posted by Larry Doyle on April 22nd, 2010 2:44 PM |
I have become a huge fan of Rick Davis of the Consumer Metrics Institute, the Colorado-based effort that tracks real-time consumer purchases to project future economic growth. Recall that during my March 28th conversation with Rick on No Quarter Radio’s Sense on Cents with Larry Doyle, Rick projected that 2nd quarter 2010 GDP would register a -1.5% (yes, that is a negative GDP for 2nd quarter 2010). You can read a recap of my interview with Rick here.
What does Rick see lately? Let’s navigate. Rick wrote yesterday:
Speaking of what we do, our Contraction Watch (see top chart below) continues to show a contraction event that has not yet formed a clear bottom. The contraction has, however, extended long enough that the likelihood of the dreaded ‘double dip’ has become very real. (more…)
Posted by Larry Doyle on March 29th, 2010 7:17 AM |
If the American consumer represents 70% of our economy, shouldn’t economists study consumer spending as much as possible? Well, one individual, and he is not a trained economist,–he is actually a physicist by trade– has done and is doing just that. Who is this visionary? Richard C. Davis of the Consumer Metrics Institute.
I hosted Richard on my radio show, No Quarter Radio’s Sense on Cents with Larry Doyle Welcomes Rick Davis, last evening. If you have any interest in the economy (and if the economy is even peripherally linked to the markets), you MUST listen to this interview. Those who follow my work know I am not one taken to hyperbole, but last evening’s show was as good as it gets in terms of cutting edge analysis on the economy focused specifically on the consumer. (more…)