Spending and savings, Apartment market tightness, Vehicle sales

Seems to me this divergence has been stretched to the limit: And this chart from Daniele Della Bona shows how dipping into savings via borrowing adds to interest expense that further reduces savings when other personal income is lagging: And this shows the gap: And from a different angle: And this was ...Read More

Personal income and outlays, GDP, PMI’s, Philly Fed index, Bank loans, Rail traffic

Pretty much in line with expectations, but last month’s spending increase means what I think was an unsustainably low savings rate is now even lower. Highlights Personal income rose 0.4 percent in December with wages and salaries up a solid 0.5 percent. Spending also rose 0.4 percent in December with November revised ...Read More

New home sales

Much lower than expected, and last month’s number, which was touted as the turning point for housing, was revised lower as well. And note from the chart we’re still below the levels of the 1970’s when the population was about 40% lower: Highlights The headline 9.3 percent decline in new home sales ...Read More

Existing home sales, PMI services, Coal mining jobs

Less than expected and last month’s number revised a bit lower, so still no contribution to growth for the year: Highlights Lack of supply pulled down existing home sales in December and may very well pull down sales in January as well. Existing home sales fell 3.6 percent in December to an ...Read More

Housing starts, Apple repatriation

Starts were quite a bit lower than expected while permits held steady: From the Census Bureau: Permits, Starts and Completions Housing Starts: Privately-owned housing starts in December were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,192,000. This is 8.2 percent below the revised November estimate of 1,299,000 and is 6.0 percent below ...Read More

Housing index, Industrial production, Redbook same store sales, Healthcare comments

Up more than expected this month, but last month revised down, inline with a recent pattern of reporting a better than expected number that subsequently gets revised down to where it no longer looks so good: The year end blip up, funded by out sized credit card advances, may have reversed: Highlights ...Read More

Bank lending review, $US, Dementia signs

I’m using monthly totals this week to take some of the ‘noise’ out of the weekly numbers surrounding year end: Pretty clear here there’s been almost no loan growth over the last year or so: The growth rate of real estate lending also shifted around election time: Consumer credit, however, expanded into ...Read More

Retail sales, $US

Highlights It was a very good holiday shopping season but perhaps not a great one. Retail sales rose a solid 0.4 percent in December which is just shy of Econoday’s consensus though November is revised 1 tenth higher to what is a standout gain of 0.9 percent. Core readings show similar strength ...Read More

Jobless claims, Producer prices, Savings rate chart

Yes, they have been made very hard to get, and now economists are getting concerned that they are moving higher: Highlights In what might be an early sign of loosening in the labor market, initial jobless claims rose 11,000 in the January 6 week to a higher-than-expected 261,000. The gain is widespread ...Read More

Consumer Credit, Small business index, JOLTS, Rig counts

Things are starting to add up better with this jump in consumer borrowing. With real disposable personal income growth near 0, and spending growing at just over 2.5% through November, it’s now looking like consumers ‘dipped into savings’ by running up their credit card balances which tends to be followed by reductions ...Read More