Work Where?

After instantaneously falling to 5%, the percentage of persons working in an office building slowly rose to 20% by late 10/20. It then reversed and steadily fell to just 10% by Christmas. Since, it’s consistently risen and is now 25%. The city with the highest percentage of persons in the office is … [Read more...]


Dwelling Decline

June new home sales came in at a seasonally adjusted annualized rate of just 676,000/year, and May was revised sharply down. As recently as 1/21 sales were 993,000/year but have fallen sharply and are now below their pre-Covid-19 run rate. Moreover, months of inventory are jumping. After bottoming … [Read more...]


Rate Reduction

Since mid-March, the rate on the 10-year Treasury bond has eased from 1.74% to just 1.30%, despite rising inflation. Partly it’s Fed Chair Powell’s consistent message that inflation is transitory, but there’s more. Monetary stimulus is expected to be removed earlier than previously thought, less … [Read more...]


Outrageous Orbiting

The Friday File: According to some astronomers, space begins at the exosphere, the outermost layer of the atmosphere, about 435 miles high. According to most, it’s the Karman Line, 62 miles above Earth, and beyond which lift from the air can no longer keep winged craft aloft. To the FAA, it’s just … [Read more...]


Retirement Reckoning

Two reasons for the worker shortage that get little attention include retirements and business formation. From 2012 through 2019, annual retirements averaged about 2 million/year. In 2020, 3.2 million workers retired! In 2018 and 2019, business applications were 3.5 million/year. In 2020, 4.4 … [Read more...]


Housing High

While house price appreciation is blowing past wage appreciation, reducing affordability, there are countervailing forces. Rates remain low, and critically, US household wealth grew by a staggering $13.5 trillion in 2020, half from equities. However, stock and home ownership are not evenly … [Read more...]


Understated Unemployment

While the official unemployment rate is 5.9%, that’s an underestimate. Adding up persons receiving regular unemployment insurance, pandemic extended benefits, and those collecting pandemic assistance, totals 15 million. That divided by the labor force of 161 million gives an unemployment rate of … [Read more...]


Debt Debacle

A two-year suspension of the debt ceiling that passed in 2019 will expire on 7/31/21, 12 days from now. Congress must either extend the current suspension or pass a higher debt ceiling limit. If neither occurs, the Treasury will relatively soon be unable to pay all its bills. While this kabuki … [Read more...]


Milk Movement

The Friday File: While fluid dairy milk consumption has declined from 247 lbs/person in 1975 to 146 lbs/person in 2018, fattier milk is very popular. 38% of households have 2% milk in their refrigerator, followed closely by whole milk at 36%. Non-dairy milk is stocked by 12% of households, 1% milk … [Read more...]


Interesting Inflation

While June annual inflation as measured by core CPI was 4.5%, the highest rate in decades, Treasuries were unmoved. Price increases for used cars and trucks singlehandedly drove one-third of the index rise. More generally, 90% of the items in the basket were up 2% Y-o-Y, while 10% of the items were … [Read more...]