Oct
09

Wavy Woman

The Friday File: Last month, a team of wave engineers determined that Brazilian big wave surfer Maya Gabeira, assisted by her tow-partner Sebastian Steudner, who was sea-dooing at 50 mph while slinging her onto the lip of the giant wave, rode the biggest wave of the year. It was 73.5 feet high! This … [Read more...]

Oct
08

Safety Seats

Since 1977, and especially since the mid-1990s, states have steadily raised the age for which a child must sit in a car safety seat. These laws have saved 60 lives/year. So few because seatbelts are as safe as child car seats for children over two. These laws have, however, reduced births by … [Read more...]

Oct
07

Delinquency Data

The delinquency rate for mortgages on one-to-four-unit residential properties, including loans in forbearance if a payment was not made, jumped from 4.36% in 20Q1 to 8.22% in 20Q2. This is the biggest quarterly jump ever and 8.22% is the highest rate since 11Q2. The rate peaked in 10Q1 at 10.06%. … [Read more...]

Oct
06

Median Money

In 2019, median family income was $58,600. With less than a HS diploma it was $30,800; with a HS diploma it was $45,800; with some college it was $51,200; and with a college degree it was $95,700. Median income for the bottom quintile was $17,700 and was $36,700 for the next lowest quintile. For … [Read more...]

Oct
05

Languishing Labor

While 661,000 jobs were created in September, that’s way down from 4.8 million in June, 1.7 million in July, and even 1.5 million in August. The trend is troubling. We’ve only made up 51.5% of lost jobs, leaving us 10.7 million jobs below the 2/20 level. The unemployment rate fell to 7.9% from 8.4% … [Read more...]

Oct
02

Nobel Nuggets

The Friday File: Winners of this year’s Nobel Prizes, which will be announced next week, will be getting 10% more prize money. Each of the six prizes will come with 10 million Swedish Krona (SEK), $1.1 million. Initially, the prizes came with 150,000 SEK and first hit 10 million SEK in 2010. The … [Read more...]

Oct
01

Shelter Shortage

New housing, and thus existing housing, has become increasingly more expensive because of burdensome land use regulations, increasingly costly building codes, a labor shortage, and higher input costs. Another rarely mentioned reason is industry consolidation. The share of homes built by public … [Read more...]

Sep
30

Soldiers Serving

The number of ex-servicepersons in the US is 18 million, or 7% of the adult population. In the House of Representatives, it is 18%, and it is 19% in the Senate. While vastly overrepresented, this is a far cry from the 1965-1975 period when it was 70% in both chambers and peaked at 80% in the Senate … [Read more...]

Sep
29

Business Births

The number of applications to start a new business fell from 27,000/week to 18,000/week during the second half of March and April. By the end of May, applications had fully recovered but they kept rising and peaked in early July at 40,000/week compared to the normal 22,500/week. Weekly applications … [Read more...]

Sep
28

Reeling Restaurants

Business closures among law firms are very low at 1.6/1,000 firms; architects at 2/1,000 and accountants at 2.9/1,000 are also profoundly low. Conversely, burger joints at 56/1,000 and breakfast and brunch restaurants at 57/1,000 have suffered profoundly. The state with the most closed businesses - … [Read more...]