Housing Up–Rate Hike Pressure?

(Albuquerque, NM)  Just out from S&P, Case-Shiller, et al. New York, November 24, 2015 – S&P Dow Jones Indices today released the latest results for the S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices, the leading measure of U.S. home prices. Data released today for September 2015 show that home prices continued their rise across the country over the last 12 months. More than 27 years of history for these data series is available, and can be accessed in full by going to www.homeprice.spdji.com. Additional content on the housing market can also be found … Continue reading

Coping: Engineering the AfterLife

(Albuquerque, NM)  We have two days left on out adventure and then we will be back to the relative safety of the ranch in the Outback of East Texas. Since we have been staying many places (and sleeping in many strange beds) the level of “dream activity” has been inconsistent but instructive. As you know, I have been tinkering with my dream states for a long time.  There seem to be “personal best” periods of the year for me – in the March/April period and again in the period just … Continue reading

Fed: Consumption Collapse, Negative Rates

(Payson, AZ)  The Fed is holding a special emergency session today. The notice on their website says (in part): It is anticipated that the closed meeting of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System at 11:30 AM on Monday, November 23, 2015, will be held under expedited procedures, as set forth in section 26lb.7 of the Board’s Rules Regarding Public Observation of Meetings, at the Board’s offices at 20th Street and C Streets, N.W., Washington, D.C. The following items of official Board business are tentatively scheduled to be … Continue reading

Coping: Seeing Your Personal “Source Code”

(Payson, AZ)  Note to self:  Send a copy of this morning’s column to Dr. Rob, our genius-level friend who is on the leading edge of photobiomodulation. While some people’s personal “energy” gets turned on by places like Sedona, AZ, I’m not one of them.  For me, Sedona was beautiful (north of the town up to Flagstaff), but spirit-wise, it is just another place. On the other hand,  the high mountain country around Payson does seem to have quite an impact on my personal awareness.  This morning I want to share … Continue reading

Traveler’s Prepping School

Yes, the column was late this morning, but for reasons that you’ll understand in a minute. And it all revolves around what I call traveler’s prepping issues. After a few headlines, we’ll go through some of the shortcomings in our own travel preps and offer a checklist of items for the “totally prepped” auto adventure. But the core of this morning’s report is an idea I call “Iron Mountain, II.”  Turns out, we may be on to the underlying cause of all that goes on in the world… More for … Continue reading

WS’s WoW & the Happy Invaders

(Phoenix, AZ)  In our Coping section following the main news events that will drive life, we get into it much more deeply, but we are braced for a “week of terror” around the world as ISIS has plans to kill a couple of hundred hostages this morning in Mali. I’m sure some bleeding-heart idiot will claim “You don’t KNOW they are planning to kill anyone…”  But I would say “STFU and get a grip. And wake up SecState Sleepy Kerry while you’re at it.” You don’t take over a hotel … Continue reading

Coping: “Nervous Week” Begins

(Phoenix, AZ)  As the weekend begins, there are a couple of items that are making us very nervous about being so far away from the ranch back home in Texas. We have also gone into “gas tank never less than 3/4-full mode.  That gets us the largest number of options. First, a couple of items to put it all into perspective. We had a very nice dinner with Elaine’s son who lives in Phoenix, last night. But getting back to our temporary abode was a bit more difficult than expected.  … Continue reading

Fed Jabbertalky

The monthly rush to speculate on whether and when the Fed will actually get around to raising interest rates is underway in earnest. The minutes of the previous Fed meeting seem to hint that the “recovery” may be far enough along to raise rates in December. But before you get really excited, let’s look at a little hard reality. First there is the 10-year Treasury.  Check the chart over here and you will see that in the past year we have already seen almost 2.5% and on Wednesday, the 10-year … Continue reading

Coping: With the “Change Monster”

(Phoenix, AZ)  Time to consider changes to the UrbanSurvival web site.  You’re a reader, so time to toss in your 2-cents worth. Yeah, I know… been a semi-daily fixture of how many mornings now since we fired off the site in 1997… But this trip on the road has about killed me:  I awoke yesterday morning at 3 AM local time, wrote the column until 6 AM, and went back to bed for two more hours of sleep.  And here I am this morning – 3 AM again – finding … Continue reading

Slots, Life-Loops, and Investments…

(Sedona, AZ)  Very much a “to the point” column this morning as we discuss our “secret mission” of the current road trip.  You didn’t think we would be driving and leaving the airplane home in the hangar without a damn good reason, do you? Then, Saturday we will focus on the art of “investing” again, versus “trading.”  But this morning’s column is about the “softer side” of how that investing stuff takes place and how to trouble-shoot our own thinking when we start to make bad investment decisions. So this … Continue reading

New CPI: Up At Fed Target Rate–2.4% Annualized

(Las Vegas, NV)  Hot off the press this morning:  Consumer Prices up 2-10th’s of a percent for October: The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) increased 0.2 percent in October on a seasonally adjusted basis, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Over the last 12 months, the all items index increased 0.2 percent before seasonal adjustment. The indexes for food, energy, and all items less food and energy all increased modestly in October. The food index, which increased 0.4 percent in September, rose 0.1 percent in … Continue reading

Coping: A Statistical Approach to Slot Machines

Don’t be put off by this morning’s discussion topic.  This will not be a long, boring paper where we will toss around mathematical symbols and discuss the arcane science of “luck” as it related to “numbers.” But, I will tell you how I have taught myself to win and walk away with a few dollars in many casinos. :Let me start at the beginning: Years and years ago, like 1975, or so, I was invited to the opening of what was the old Desert Inn –which was owned by Summa … Continue reading

Markets Post-Paris: Stable Yet Uninspiring

(Las Vegas, NV)  The big story this morning will be how global markets react – or don’t – to the outrage in Paris late Friday. As you can read in the reports out this morning, the French have conducted 150-some raids and have arrested a large number of people.  And it all seems to have calmed markets a bit – with the French market about even, so far. We do notice a few domestic oddities,  like the break-in this weekend at an Army Reserve training facility in Massachusetts.  No inventory … Continue reading