There are only a handful of economic stories about the Second Depression that really matter this week.
First we are expected to have a major rally this morning. This is because our Trading Model has arrived at a make-or-break point which will be working out over the next couple of weeks. One solution is for another screaming rally upward…the other one is really grim. Not that we care – we just go where the numbers say.
The second big item this week is that it’s a four-day trading week – markets take Good Friday off, and this Friday is better than most.
Number three on our list is tomorrow Case-Shiller, Standard and Poors, Dow-Jones, Case Logic (and whoever else wanders by) Monthly Housing report. This is the gold standard of what’s really going on in Housing – and is closely watched. I expect it to be levelish.
There’s a big shift going on with more people moving into rentals (which is why you see apartments going up all over the place) but single family housing is stable except for hot/crazy/manic markets like the Bay area and a few others.
Fourth and final big deal this morning is it’s the end of the month and so the price of gold is getting clobbered – down $15 when I looked earlier, but down $30 or more wouldn’t surprise Ures truly over the next couple of days.
Money is a fiction.
This is a little-discussed point but we begin the week recognizing that a piece of paper with some ink on it is NOT wealth. Wealth is something that lives between the ears. It’s a product of attitude and application; a natural consequence of seeing opportunity and doing something about it.
Most people are poor between the ears. And what’s inside manifests on the outside. If things on the outside aren’t going well, the problem is usually – care to guess? – where?
Crisis in the Wings?
When stocks stop trading – we get very interested. So go read this and take note.
Personal Income (lol)
It’s great fun to be writing a novel. It has helped me develop a greater appreciation for press releases like the one out this morning on Personal Income and Outlays – a finer work I could not have crafted in a million years. (I’m just too honest for that – and I think fiction should be believable…).
“Personal income increased $58.6 billion, or 0.4 percent, and disposable personal income (DPI) increased $54.2 billion, or 0.4 percent, in February, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis. Personal consumption expenditures (PCE) increased $11.8 billion, or 0.1 percent. In January, personal income increased $61.8 billion, or 0.4 percent, DPI increased $61.5 billion, or 0.5 percent, and PCE decreased $28.5 billion, or 0.2 percent, based on revised estimates.
Wages and salaries increased $23.9 billion in February, compared with an increase of $47.3 billion in January. Private wages and salaries increased $21.9 billion, compared with an increase of $44.2 billion. Government wages and salaries increased $2.1 billion, compared with an increase of $3.1 billion. Pay raises for federal civilian personnel added an additional $0.6 billion to the change in government payrolls in February; pay raises for federal civilian and military personnel added $2.2 billion to government payrolls in January.
Personal saving — DPI less personal outlays — was $768.6 billion in February, compared with $728.7 billion in January. The personal saving rate — personal saving as a percentage of disposable personal income — was 5.8 percent in February, compared with 5.5 percent in January.
No, you are no supposed to ask here all this personal savings is supposed to be. We are all, apparently, well below average. No one I know saved 5.8% last month.
But that doesn’t mean we’re not wealthy in the untaxable way.
The Big Iran Deal
The headlines are all over the place about how the Iran talks are down to last ditch efforts to come up with a settlement before a deadline for results come.
Sipping the bean this morning we’re faced with The Great April Fool problem: Which side will it be?
My money’s on us.
The Coming Muslim-Muslim War
We see more evidence that the Iranian Shi’ites and the Saudi Sunnis are being maneuvered into regional nuclear war. Latest is the flock of headlines about how the Shi’ites are maneuvering to take over the while Middle East. Like the Egyptian/Saudi alliance isn’t?
Hand me the ViseGrips would you?
Speaking of Quality of Leadership:
Here’s another ponder for you: You saw where former Israeli prime minister Ehud Olmert has been found guilty of corruption for accepting money from an American backer?
How come Israel can find foreign contribution money and somehow the US can’t?
No to Religious Freedom?
The problem is that religious freedom means different things to different people. Many Muslims, for example, have the “convert or kill” belief. But that isn’t what brings ‘em out in Indiana to protest. No, it is an LBGT fear because there are references some Christians take as banning LBGT behaviors in scripture.
The fine line – in either case – is when does a religion stop being a religion and become a political action group here in this “One Nation Under God”?
No YAB-YAC!!!! O’Malley Strikes a Chord
This is what would happen if it comes down to YAB versus YAC.
What’s a YAB YAC? Oh…Yet Another Bush and Yet Another Clinton.
We’ve had too much from both families already. Go live in the history pages, please.
Keep An Eye On
Pebble Time’s Smartwatch. Coming in around $200 is the Pebble Steel Smart Watch for iPhone and Android Devices (Brushed Stainless).
Interesting in that with so much competition heating up in the e-watch segment, it must be later than we think.