Most people miss the whole point of “reading the news.”
Your “average news consumer” isn’t sure what they’re really after. But some consultancies (Magid, I think it was, way back in the day) taught “Health, Heart, and Pocketbook” as key editor story-selection criteria.
The A.P. also did some research (I was on their Broadcast Association publications committee briefly): They found Weather was really important, too.
Little of that early “news consumer” work really focused on The Future much, but stories with good “looking-ahead” angles are popular now.
Rate of Change Paradox
In Charles Babbage’s book on economics of machinery and manufacturing (1832), we realize that in almost 200 years, the fundamentals of being a human haven’t really changed much. People were generally eating two or three meals a day, sleeping 6-10 hours, and getting to work took 15 to 30 minutes typically. Though walking…
The first patent for commercial toilet paper and dispenser came along in 1883. Radio came along 20-years later. So, yes, there has been major progress, but at a price.
With most “exciting innovation” there’s little attention paid to the long-term effects. Toilet paper needs biomass. Radio and communications (along with electric lighting, sets up the energy addiction. Such that for each “advance” we can, upon inspection, find a drawback.
Scant attention is paid to this formula as new inventions come along. Since initially there’s profit. But, often in the long-term, there’s a downside cost.
Which has what to do with this morning’s Consumer Price Inflation data Just out?
Let’s Roll Data First
From the Labor Department:
“The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) increased 0.6 percent in May on a seasonally adjusted basis after rising 0.8 percent in April, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Over the last 12 months, the all items index increased 5.0 percent before seasonal adjustment; this was the largest 12-month increase since a 5.4-percent increase for the period ending August 2008.
The index for used cars and trucks continued to rise sharply, increasing
7.3 percent in May. This increase accounted for about one-third of the
seasonally adjusted all items increase. The food index increased 0.4 percent in May, the same increase as in April. The energy index was unchanged in May, with a decline in the gasoline index again offsetting increases in the electricity and natural gas indexes.
The index for all items less food and energy rose 0.7 percent in May after
increasing 0.9 percent in April. Many of the same indexes continued to increase, including used cars and trucks, household furnishings and operations, new vehicles, airline fares, and apparel. The index for medical care fell slightly, one of the few major component indexes to decline in May.
Inflation is (picking up on our initial comment) very much akin to a weather forecast.
There are two areas worth a few minutes of reflection. The first is Ure’s handy-dandy $100 table. Look up a month-on-month inflation rate on the top line and drop down to see what it will pencil out to compounded over 1, 5, 10, or 20-years.
See the 0.6% column? Something $100 today will cost (on average) $107.44 in a year.
The screamer in the report is Gasoline up 56.2% in the past year. Which will take 60-months to be fully realized with knock-on effects throughout the economy. Everything from commuting costs to freight rates. Here we go…up, up, and away…
Say you read this morning’s Consumer Price report and you remark in your head “Say, inflation is really coming along…”
Then you look at the price of Lumber over on FinViz and you see lumber down 0.77% for the day. I mentioned that lumber (from its recent spike top) did an Elliott 1 down, seemed to be putting in a bounce Wave 2. With the chart pattern indicating a possible Wave 3 down in coming weeks, you now have valuable insight into whether to buy or build a new home.
If you believe that inflation is just a passing thing (bad bet, but it’s your dough) you might hold off on home-buying. BUT given the look-ahead from CPI, and given lumber will still be expensive (and the largest cost element in single family detached homes) buying sooner than latter makes sense every day.
Because mortgage rates are essentially “free” when you transition from super-cheap rates to where rates could be in 5, 10, or 20-years.
A new $35,000 car today is likely to be $37,600 a year from now. Or more – depends on Fed overshoot.
New Jobless Claims
Lies were screaming out of the CROOKED FINANCIAL PRESS this morning. “Jobless claims likely fell for Sixth Straight Week” blared one.
Lie? Yes. Jobless claims only fell last week if you follow “seasonally adjusted” numbers. Which makes sense ONLY in specific cases where Seasonality impacts. Fall crop production is different than Winter crops. But applying S.A. to weekly data sets is little more than averaging; designed to bullshit people into believing a political narrative.
So, stick to the yellow highlighted ACTUALS not the S.A. numbers when served the newly unemployed claims. Things are even better than adjusted numbers.
See the reality? Sure looks like (when taken along with the inflation data) like an overheated economy could be just ahead.
Here’s a report (surprisingly) from CNN summarizing: Rising prices: Companies struggle to restock their inventories post pandemic. Wage demands rise and here comes higher prices.
Down the road from us, reports are that Variant D is in Texas now. Just in time for today’s announcement from the feds on whether healthcare workers can be directed to jab or jump. New OSHA guidance says “non-binding” – which if true begs the question “If it’s not binding why spend taxpayer money since everyone in the world has an opinion now?”
The strategy we’ll be watching for is IF employers in any field can dictate firing for failure to take and EXPERIMENTAL, NON-TRIALED drug? (If they can do that, they essentially move government into power over who lives or dies…)
We remain in the “control group” and holed-up in the Outback. We’re waiting for the national media fever to break. Speaking of which…
In Ure Shorts
National Political Correctness Disease continues to spread unchecked. Witness Slate‘s “Elin Hilderbrand and Casey McQuiston delete lines in novels due to social media outrage. “ The good news about political correctness disease is major companies are now self-identifying. As we swear-off and change brands, our household spending has dropped. As things like the occasional Coke have come off the list, lol. Don’t buy PC-BS – save a bundle. No more pro sports, less online…
Lost in the Mental Fog is Slow Joe’s Open Border. Migrant encounters rise above 180K in May as border crisis continues. Near as we can figure, the Kamunist’s efforts down south will have absolutely no impact on the problem. Optics only…which is the plan, isn’t it? Oh, and speaking of press bias, how about this Tweet?
Elsewhere in the Thursday clown parade: Spokesperson Responds To Claim Meghan, Harry Didn’t Get Queen’s Permission For Baby’s Name. YGTBSM, this is newsworthy?
2022 Auto Hype begins: Toyota VP says new Tundra pickup ‘will blow you away’. Oh? Is it free? Got chips to make it?
Wait! Cramer said what? Cramer says meme stocks ‘should be offered at the casino’ instead of Wall Street. WTF Wall St. IS THE Casino, dude. Ban naked short selling of all financial products and we can talk.
Gets me to a point which is coming up on ShopTalk Sunday this week: The highest wages you will ever make generally come from personal sweat equity. Especially when you apply a thin layer of sweat to your own property. More on this Sunday. But, if you are planning to become a home owner, the Big Reality is coming along.
Quiet weekend for the Ure’s ahead: BBQ and Lawnmower call now that the rain has stopped for a week. Which means back to water the garden. Still waiting for the first tomatoes to grace the plate.
About time for summer doldrums, isn’t it? BTC $37,664 and S&P about flat at click-time. Need more coffee to make it through this one.
Write when you get rich,