Uncategorized Archive

UK, health care costs, US labor force

As discussed back when the law was first proposed, this version of ‘moral hazard’ renders the entire program unworkable and to the best of my knowledge and understanding there is no ‘fix’: Health Insurers Struggle to Offset New Costs May 4 (WSJ) — Insurers have begun to propose big premium increases for ...Read More

Saudi pricing, layoffs

If true, the $1.10 increase in the differential for Asia is substantial. However the other, much smaller adjustments are not material, so it’s hard to say from this information whether or not this is a policy move designed to stabilize prices at current levels: (Bloomberg) — Saudi Aramco raised prices for most ...Read More

Mtg purchase apps, ADP, Trade, Factory orders

Same story, depressed and growing too slowly to matter: MBA Mortgage Applications Highlights Purchase applications for home mortgages managed to rise 1.0 percent in the April 29 week, but refinancing continued to decline, down 6.0 percent after falling 5.0 percent in the prior week. Though purchase applications are 13 percent higher than ...Read More

Car sales, Home prices

Car sales came in about as expected. Note the year over year 3 month moving average continues its deceleration, and so far not adding as much to growth this year as last year: The luxury home market may be losing some of its luster. Average sales prices for homes listed at $1 ...Read More

China, Redbook retail sales, UK manufacturing, yen comments

Still in negative territory: Still stone cold dead: Exporters have serious clout over there. Intervention on their behalf would be no surprise: Japan exporters stand to take nearly $10bn hit from rising yen The yen’s sharp appreciation threatens to undercut profits at major Japanese exporters by more than 1 trillion yen ($9.37 ...Read More

CNY/EUR, construction spending

Good chance China is now rebuilding euro reserves sold when they panicked over negative rates, qe, etc. In fact, they could now be targeting the euro area for export growth: This came out this am. Note how construction flattened in the middle of last year when the NY tax incentives expired, and ...Read More

ISM manufacturing, Construction spending, PMI manufacturing index

Another worse than expected report, and now it’s been over a year since it all started going bad, even as analysts continue to find reasons to be optimistic that have yet to pan out: ISM Mfg Index Highlights April’s 50.8 for the ISM manufacturing index may be moderately below expectations for 51.5 ...Read More

Saudi production, GDP comment, rig count

Saudi production remains well below their claimed 12 million bpd current max capacity, as they continue to set price and let sales and output float. Market action suggest they have altered their posted prices, but so far publicly available information doesn’t indicate a change in pricing policy. If so, the latest move ...Read More


Weak, a bit below expectations, and not much hope left for Q2 either. And some time last year the govt changed the seasonal adjustments, adding a bit to Q1 and taking some away from the other quarters. So this release included that new seasonal adjustment: GDP Highlights Consumer spending, largely on services, ...Read More

Mtg purchase apps, Pending home sales, Bank liquidity, Apple

Continues at depressed levels: MBA Mortgage Applications Highlights Purchase applications are not pointing to Spring acceleration for the housing sector, down 2.0 percent from the April 22 week with the year-on-year rate continuing to come down, to 14 percent from 17 percent. This rate was as high as 30 percent as recently ...Read More