We in the United States, the Euro-zone, and Japan are already past peak oil demand. Oil demand has to do with how much oil we can afford. Many of the developed nations are not able to outbid the developing nations when it comes to the world’s limited oil supply.
The University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment preliminary number for April came in at 72.3, a hefty drop from the March final reading of 78.6. The Briefing.com consensus was for 78.0. The latest number takes us back to a level associated with recessionary consumer sentiment.
While gold and silver bullion have fallen considerably since the highs reached in 2011, and mining stocks have fallen even more, I believe the weakness behind much of this move is due to the transition from the bull market in precious metals to its next phase.
The reason the Chained CPI is now a hot topic in the news is that it's being proposed as the method for determining cost of living adjustments for Social Security.
There is no doubt anymore that our modern market structure has problems. Nobody with a fully functioning frontal lobe will tell you that it doesn't. Still, as obvious as it is that things are broken, many of us disagree on exactly what is broken and how to go about fixing it.
As highlighted in the last few “Market’s Bill of Health” reports, the S&P 500 has been showing weakening breadth and momentum which typically occurs before short-term tops. In prior reports it was shown that weakness in cyclicals was the culprit as the defensive sectors led by health care continued to power higher. Currently, however, recent movements in the cyclical sectors suggests that their underperformance to the broad market may be ending, with a weakening USD providing the catalyst.
The lesson from the events of 2007-2008 should have been clear: Boosting GDP with loose money – as the Greenspan Fed did repeatedly between 1987 and 2005 and most damagingly between 2001 and 2005...
Once you get past the childish title, the recent bitcoin piece from Karl Denninger raises some issues that warrant consideration from bitcoin economists. Denninger is an intelligent student of the capital markets and his essay deserves a serious reply.
The latest issue of the NFIB Small Business Economic Trends is out today. The April update for March came in at 89.5, which puts it deep in the cellar at the 9th percentile in this series, where a distinctly recessionary mood prevails.