Non-Farm Payrolls Mislead

The Labor Market is Weakening; Inflation is Falling The big economic news of the week was the +272K rise in Non-Farm Payrolls (NFP)(released on Friday, June 7). Expectations were for a number in the +180K range, so, a pretty big beat. Another data point upsetting markets (and likely the Fed) was the hottish average hourly […]

A Strapped Consumer = A Slowing Economy

Rampant CRE Foreclosures Portend Something More Sinister Financial markets closed the week mixed with the Nasdaq rising +1.4% and closing at a record high thanks to the huge Nvidia beat on both top and bottom lines. The S&P 500 was flat on the week (+0.3%) while the Dow Jones, with its 606-point (-1.5%) dive on […]

When “Bad News” Becomes “Good News”

While Tuesday’s Producer Price Index (PPI) for April came in hotter than expected (+0.5%), markets took the bad data in stride, perhaps because the year/year change on the headline index was still only 2.2% (2.4% for the “core,” i.e., ex-food and energy). Another reason for the lack of market volatility from the release may have […]

In 2024, Expect Lower Interest Rates & Lower Inflation

As we entered 2023, households were still flush with the cash from government handouts, the economy was healthy, the federal government was still running a significant deficit, and interest rates, while rising, had not yet been restrictive long enough to slow the economy. Real (inflation adjusted) GDP grew at an annualized rate of 3.0% for […]

The Economy: Navigating Scylla & Charybdis

  In Greek mythology, Scylla and Charybdis were mythical sea monsters existing on the opposite sides of the Strait of Messina, between Sicily and the Italian mainland.  Scylla was a six headed sea monster; Charybdis a huge whirlpool.  Because they were so close together, any passing ship was threatened.  In Homer’s Odyssey, Odysseus passed close […]