Tim Iacono's Contributions

Millennials on Debt: “Me No Likey”

A new report from the New York Fed shows a disturbing trend (if you’re a bank, that is) about consumer credit as the borrow-and-spend baby-boomer generation heads off into the sunset with a chastened millennial generation not able/willing to take up the slack.

What’s Wrong With Australia?

Via this item at Zero Hedge comes the chart below from Reuters depicting the state of the world, interest rate-wise, strongly suggesting that rate cuts are in the offing down under.

The Myth of Retiring Baby Boomers

Anyone interested in digging deeper into the quandary over what’s responsible for the declining labor force participation rate in the US should have a look at this item from Doug Short over at Advisor Perspectives where...

Chinese Farmer Loses Life Savings

Given the remarkable increase in the number of stock trading accounts and soaring margin debt in China over the last year or two, stories such as the one below about a farmer losing his life savings...

US Housing Market Heating Up

After Wednesday’s five-year high in existing home sales and fresh record high in median sales price, here’s a quick look at where home values are rising the quickest and where bidding wars are common via this WSJ...

US Economy at Zero Growth According to Atlanta Fed

As was the case a year ago when harsh winter weather visited the East Coast, the first quarter of 2015 is turning out to be something of a bust GDP growth-wise as evidenced by the Atlanta Federal Reserve’s GDPNow forecast shown below.

Larry Summers Warns on Fed Rate Hikes

In Davos, former Treasury Secretary and would-be Federal Reserve Chairman Larry Summers warns the U.S. central bank to put off any increases to short term interest rates, citing deflation and secular stagnation as...

Young and Dumb Again

Via this story by Catherine Rampell at the Washington Post comes the graphic below showing how personal savings rates have changed over the years by age group. Recall that the personal savings rate is simply disposable income less spending, so...

Big Misses for Retail Sales, NY Manufacturing

The Commerce Department reported(.pdf) that retail sales unexpectedly fell last month, down 0.3 percent in September after an increase of 0.6 percent in August. The declines were broad-based and this is a possible indication of slowing growth in the U.S. economy.

August Retail Sales Rose Broadly

On a year-over-year basis, retail sales rose to a 13-month high of 5.0 percent, up sharply from the winter slowdown that saw the annual sales gain dip to as low as 1.6 percent.

Retail Sales Flat in July, Autos Sales Decline

The Commerce Department reported that retail sales were unchanged in July following a modest 0.2 percent gain in June and, for the second month in a row, auto sales declined.

Economy Expands at 4.0% Annual Rate in Q2

The Commerce Department reported that the U.S. economy expanded at a rate of 4.0 percent in the second quarter, well above the consensus estimate of 3.0 percent, and the contraction during the first quarter was revised up from a -2.9 percent rate to -2.1 percent.

U.S. Home Price Gains Slow … or Reverse

Standard & Poor’s reported(.pdf) that U.S. home price gains have slowed dramatically in recent months and, on a seasonally adjusted basis, home prices have now declined for the first time in two-and-a-half years as shown below.

ISM Steady, New Orders Up, Stocks Soar

The Institute for Supply Management reported that the U.S. manufacturing sector continued to expand at a healthy pace last month as their purchasing managers index was little changed, down slightly from 55.4 in May to 55.3 in June.

Consumer Prices Rise, Inflation Reaches 2.1%

The Labor Department reported that annual inflation in the U.S. rose above 2 percent for the first time since late-2012 as a surge in energy prices added to broad-based inflation in other categories of consumer goods and services.

Housing Starts, Permits See Big Rebound

The U.S. housing market received some rare good news this morning as the Commerce Department reported(.pdf) that housing starts and permits for new construction both exceeded analysts’ estimates...

Consumer Prices Jump 0.3% in April

The Labor Department reported that consumer prices jumped 0.3 percent in April, due largely to the rising cost of food, motor fuel, and other transportation items as the annual rate of inflation in the U.S. now stands at 2.0 percent. Excluding food and energy, prices rose 0.2 percent last month, now up 1.8 percent from a year ago.

Payrolls Rise 288K, Jobless Rate Falls to 6.3%

The Labor Department reported that the U.S. economy created the most new jobs in over two years and the unemployment rate fell to the lowest level since late-2008, however, it is unclear how much of the improvement is due to improving fundamentals and how much was driven by a larger than expected spring bounce after a severe winter.

No Spring Rebound for Existing Home Sales

The National Association of Realtors reported that sales of existing homes fell 0.2 percent in March to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.59 million units as there appears to have been no spring rebound in home sales after the severe winter weather that saw home sales slow sharply last December. Unfortunately for buyers, home prices continue to rise.

We Again See Real Estate As Best Investment

The latest Gallup survey on investment preferences in the U.S. puts real estate ahead of gold and stocks for the first time in at least a few years in yet another example of how most people (at least in the U.S.) simply follow established trends.

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