Jan
08

Workers Wanted

While December’s net job growth of 148,000 was slightly disappointing, it’s understandable given the dearth of unemployed workers! To wit, the unemployment rate for African Americans hit 6.8%, its lowest level since record keeping began in 1972, and the rate for Hispanics/Latinos at 4.9% is … [Read more...]

Jan
05

Marijuana Movement

 The Friday File: For the first time, a majority of Democrats, 72%, Republicans, 51%, and independents, 67%, support legalizing recreational marijuana. Collectively, 64% of the population backs legalization. As recently as 2004, only 35% of Democrats, 20% of Republicans and 47% of Independents … [Read more...]

Jan
04

Legislative Labors

 Through 12/21/17, President Trump signed 94 bills into law, slightly fewer than the 102 George W. Bush signed, putting Trump in 10th place compared to the nine most recent occupants of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue whose terms coincided with the start of a congressional session. In 8th is Obama with … [Read more...]

Jan
03

Rate Revival

 Economist expect Treasury rates to rise going forward; here’s why. Government debt sales are set to double to $1.3 trillion in 2018, tops since 2010. Moreover, the Fed will be shrinking its balance sheet and will thus be a net seller of Treasuries. Therefore, buyers other than central banks such as … [Read more...]

Jan
02

Disagreeable Debt

 The nation with the highest debt-to-GDP ratio in the world is Japan, where the ratio is an astonishingly high 240.3%. Greece follows with a ratio of 180.2%. Italy is third at 133% and then comes Portugal at 125.7%. While Spain was in fifth, its ratio has declined to 98.7% and it’s now in sixth … [Read more...]

Dec
29

Gracious Gracias

 The Friday File: I wish to take this opportunity to thank you all for your interest in my daily economics blog. All of you enrich my life in many ways; I am deeply appreciative. I wish you and yours the very best in 2018. May it be a year of full employment, outstanding decisions and predictions, … [Read more...]

Dec
28

Super Snow

In 1963, Mile 47 Camp, northeast of Valdez, Alaska was buried by 78 inches of snow during the 24 hours ending 2/9/63, tops in the US. Next is Silver Lake, Colorado, which received 75.8 inches of snow in the 24-hour period ending 4/15/21. The latest state to break a 24-hour record; Connecticut! On … [Read more...]

Dec
27

Abode Action

 While November newly built single-family sales were 733,000 on an annualized adjusted basis, the best level since 7/07, and up 17.5% from October, don’t break out the champagne. Sales were up 17.6% because October sales were revised down by 61,000. Moreover, sales are up in part because multifamily … [Read more...]

Dec
26

Affordability Absence

 As tight as the affordable rental housing market is, it’ll worsen. The Republican tax plan lowers the corporate tax rate from 35% to 21% and lowers taxes on pass-throughs. These changes will reduce the value of tax credits used to build low income-housing, thus reducing the number of affordable … [Read more...]

Dec
22

Noel Numbers

 The Friday File: Inflation, as measured by the Christmas Price Index, based on purchasing all items in “The Twelve Days of Christmas,” rose 0.7% in 2017 and cost $34,559. The costliest item, seven swans-a-swimming at $13,125, unchanged from 2016. Five gold rings rose the most, 10%, and cost $825. … [Read more...]