Subscribe: RSS Feed | Twitter | Facebook | Email
Home | Contact Us

Posts Tagged ‘Rick Davis’

Why Obama Is in Real Trouble

Posted by Larry Doyle on May 31st, 2012 5:33 PM |

It’s the economy, stupid.

Ultimately people vote their pocket book. To that end, this upcoming election should be very, very interesting.

A full three plus years after the onset of our supposed recovery and our economy remains plugged into Ben Bernanke’s life support. The European drag on the global economy is not going away anytime soon. In fact, if exacerbated the European fiasco may very well cause our own economy to fall back into recession.

On this note, how is our economy doing currently?  (more…)

Rick Davis’ MUST READ American Consumer Review

Posted by Larry Doyle on May 5th, 2011 12:37 PM |

After having highlighted Rick Davis’ work at Consumer Metrics Institute in my morning commentary, I reached out to him and received the following MUST READ fabulous response.

If you care to truly learn what is going on with the American consumer as we collectively navigate the economic landscape, sit down, take notes, save this review, and share it with your friends. In terms of cutting edge, real time, unbiased economic analysis and commentary it does not get better than this.



We go to great lengths to remove from our data both the inexorable shift of consumers from brick-and-mortar to on-line and the impact of price inflation. (more…)

Consumers Shift to Online Shopping: What Does It Mean? How Do We Measure It?

Posted by Larry Doyle on May 5th, 2011 8:58 AM |

With gasoline prices running upwards of $4.00-4.50/gallon, we should not be surprised that consumers are changing behaviors. How so? Let’s go online. In fact that is exactly what more and more consumers are doing as the Financial Times highlights, High Petrol Prices Fuel Jump in Online Shopping,

Online shopping grew by its fastest rate in nearly four years in the US last month as rising fuel prices prompted Americans to cut trips to malls and buy on the internet instead, according to MasterCard Advisors.

US consumers spent $13.8bn online last month, a 19.2 per cent jump from April last year, according to the SpendingPulse survey, which is based on spending on MasterCard credit cards and estimates of other forms of payment.

The increase is likely to outpace sales growth at bricks-and-mortar stores, due to be released on Thursday. The consensus of economists’ forecasts is that sales at stores open a year or more rose 7.7 per cent in April.

While consumer behavior changes, are we supposed to blindly accept the traditional methods of capturing and measuring retail purchases? Why should we be so archaic in this day and age? Why should we be so trusting of entities which will “tell us what they think we need to hear” and sugarcoat it in the process.  (more…)

Looking Inside “The Great Recession”

Posted by Larry Doyle on November 10th, 2010 7:47 AM |

Economic data is typically released and then reviewed in aggregate fashion. As such, understanding the dynamics at work within our economy is often clouded by the inability to access and analyse ‘the trees’ as opposed to ‘the forest.’  What happens as a result of this reality? Economic programs to address issues are typically crafted while looking through the rear view mirror. Regrettably results generated are often sub-standard and fraught with unintended consequences.

How might we change our perspective? Let’s check in with Rick Davis of Consumer Metrics Institute who projects what will occur in our economy based on a forward looking process that captures real-time consumer activity. As a longstanding admirer of Rick and his work, I welcome sharing his recent fabulous piece, Revisiting The Character of “The Great Recession”

We have commented before about how the “Great Recession” has changed character over time, evolving from a relatively normal “garden variety” and V-shaped consumer confidence recession into something far more persistent — where a lack of jobs and negative home equity has transformed it into a “new frugality.” But we haven’t previously discussed how the “Great Recession” has been an uneven experience among even those living in “Main Street” America. A recent review of our data has convinced us that this has not been a recession of shared pain, but one that has cut much deeper in some demographics than in others. (more…)

Did the 2010 Economic Slump Just Surpass the 2008 Great Recession? Let’s Ask Rick Davis

Posted by Larry Doyle on October 14th, 2010 7:26 AM |

Economics is the most inexact of sciences. As much as we may think we can understand our future economic landscape based upon the study of the past, a variety of twists, turns, and unknown challenges inevitably come upon us. This reality has never been more prevalent than in our ‘Uncle Sam’ economy circa 2010. Do not think for a second that the ‘grand wizards’ in Washington currently undertaking the massive financial experiment throughout our economy do not appreciate this. They do. They just would not admit it.

Can we look toward private enterprises in an attempt to ‘see through’ the Washington smoke and mirrors? In fact we can. I make no bones about my admiration for the work of Rick Davis at Consumer Metrics Institute. As Rick so boldly states, the work at CMI is focused on:

“Bringing the measurements of critical economic activities into the twenty-first century by mining tracking data for an understanding of what American consumers were doing yesterday.”

Well, what were our fellow Americans doing yesterday and the days before that? (more…)

GPI Shows a “Very Clear Deflationary Trend”

Posted by Larry Doyle on October 12th, 2010 3:04 PM |

Are you scratching your head wondering about the title of this commentary? Are you wondering if I inadvertently mistyped and should have written CPI for Consumer Price Index? Is it possible that I meant to write PPI for Producer Price Index? Am I somehow opining on a new found capability of the fabulous GPS navigation devices? A resounding no to all of the above.

I have been a big proponent of the work produced by Rick Davis of Consumer Metrics Institute. Recall that Rick captures real-time internet related discretionary consumer purchases to measure the overall health and pulse of our economy.  As much as some may question the correlation of Rick’s work and the economic reports released by the crowd in Washington, I am a big fan of his work. I strongly encourage people to follow him. Why do I broach this topic?

Do you trust our Washington establishment to provide real truth and display unquestioned integrity in our economic releases? You don’t? Neither do I. Aside from monitoring Rick’s work, are there other broad based,  independent vehicles with which we can measure economic data?  (more…)

Our Ongoing Recession

Posted by Larry Doyle on August 31st, 2010 5:56 AM |

I have informed more people than I care to count that I do not believe we are going to have an economic double dip. Am I turning positive on the economy? Do I see blue skies and fair winds on our economic horizon? No, regrettably not. The reason I do not believe we will have an economic double dip is very simply I do not believe that our “real” economy, not the government sponsored version, ever really came out of the initial recession.

People may care to debate or challenge me on my premise, but my ‘sense on cents’ leads me to believe that we have been experiencing one long and ongoing recession. I definitely sense that more people are now coming to accept this reality as well.  This ‘walking pneumonia’ economic syndrome is captured in a recent commentary by Rick Davis of Consumer Metrics Institute,

The “Great Recession” that began in 2008 has had many nuances, but among the most important are that many of the observed changes in consumer behavior have begun to linger, much as the recession itself now appears to have done. If a new consumer thrift paradigm becomes endemic — either because of natural demographic processes or scarred generational memories of upside-down loans — the lingering recession might well end up being measured in years, not quarters as commonly expected. (more…)

Consumption Takes Another Leg Down

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…)

What Does Rick Davis Think About Yesterday’s ICSC Report?

Posted by Larry Doyle on July 8th, 2010 4:17 PM |

When I see any economic data addressing consumer retail activity, I immediately think of Rick Davis and his fabulous work at Consumer Metrics Institute. On that note, and given yesterday’s strong upward move in the market driven largely by a positively perceived ICSC report, I went straight to the source and asked Rick for his thoughts. I had the following exchange today:

Any quick comments or thoughts on the report released by the ICSC? I
know that the report captures same store sales which makes for a big
disqualification and is not properly captured but any thoughts you may
have are always deeply appreciated.
Larry (more…)

Wall Street Economist v. Rick Davis: Mano a Mano

Posted by Larry Doyle on July 1st, 2010 10:37 AM |

I love a good debate, or at the very least a healthy response to a challenging statement. I witnessed just such an exchange yesterday.

I shared my story, Rick Davis Nailed 1st Qtr 2010 GDP Report on November 30, 2009, with a noted Wall Street economist, with whom I am friendly and whom I hold in high regard. Recall that in the aformentioned story, I highlighted that Rick Davis of Consumer Metrics Institute is projecting a double dip recession with a 2nd Qtr 2010 GDP reading of -1.5% and a 3rd Qtr GDP reading of -2.0%.

In sharing that commentary with this well known economist, I received the following response: (more…)

Recent Posts