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Commentaries from Last Three Months

No. 668: September CPI, Real Retail Sales and Earnings, New-Home Sales, Prospective GDP  subscription required   October, 23rd, 2014
• U.S. Government Prepares to Use Reduced-Inflation Index for Cost of Living Adjustments (COLA)
• 2015 Social Security COLA at 1.7% Would Have Been 9.4% without Existing Gimmicks for Understating Inflation
• September Annual Inflation: 1.7% (CPI-U), 1.6% (CPI-W), 9.4% (ShadowStats)
• September Real Retail Sales Fell by 0.4%
• September Real Earnings Fell by 0.4%
• Existing-Home Sales Headline Gain Dominated by Surge in Distressed Properties; Year-to-Year Sales Contracted for Eleventh Straight Month
• Real-World Indication of Faltering Third-Quarter Economic Activity
No. 667: September Housing Starts, Prospective Third-Quarter GDP  subscription required   October, 17th, 2014


• Third-Quarter 2014 Economic Growth Slowed Sharply
• Long-Term Stagnation in Housing Starts Continued at Low Level of Activity
• Social Security COLA Should Notch Slightly Higher from Last Year’s Adjustment, Remaining Far Shy of Common Experience
No. 666: September Industrial Production  subscription required   October, 16th, 2014
• Third-Quarter Production Growth Slowed Sharply
• Falling Auto Production in September More than Offset by Defense Industry Output, Oil and Gas Production and Weather-Related Utility Surge
No. 665: September Retail Sales, PPI  subscription required   October, 15th, 2014
• September Retail Sales Declined, August and September Activity Revised Lower and Third-Quarter Broad Growth Slowed Sharply
• Unstable Seasonal Factors Helped Push Headline PPI Lower
No. 664: Market and Economic Instabilities  subscription required   October, 10th, 2014
• Broad U.S. Economy Is Not Growing
• Sharp Deterioration Likely Will Continue in Domestic and Global Financial-Market, Economic and Political Stability
• Confluence of Crises: U.S. Economy, Stocks and Dollar
No. 663: September Labor and Monetary Conditions, August Trade Deficit & Construction Spending  subscription required   October, 3rd, 2014
• No Recovery in Actual Business Activity
• Pre-Election Nonsense in Labor Numbers
• Congress Addresses Data Falsification in Unemployment Survey
• September Unemployment Rates: 5.9% (U.3), 11.8% (U.6), 23.1% (ShadowStats)
• Fed’s Monetary Policy Propped Stocks
• Annual Money Supply M3 Growth Fell to 4.3% in September
• Trade Data Were Positive, Construction Spending Was Neutral for Third-Quarter GDP
No. 662: Second-Quarter 2014 GDP -- Third Estimate  subscription required   September, 26th, 2014
• GDP Has Fully Reestablished Itself as the Most Worthless of Economic Series
• Fluff and Guesstimates Dominated the Upside GDP Revision
• Monthly Economic Reporting Should Turn Increasingly Negative
No. 661: "False Dawn," Hyperinflation, Durable Goods Orders, Home Sales  subscription required   September, 25th, 2014
• A “False Dawn” It Is
• Hyperinflation Forecast Remains in Play
• Stock Crashes versus October Residual-Squirrelling Instincts
• Durable Goods Orders Crashed 18.0% (-18.0%), Reversing July’s 22.2% Surge, Dominated Again by Irregular Commercial-Aircraft Orders
• Down for the Month, August Existing-Home Sales Were in Tenth Month of Annual Decline
• August New-Home Sales Surge of 18.0% Was Statistically-Insignificant
No. 660: Economic Review, August Housing Starts, Payroll Benchmark Revision  subscription required   September, 18th, 2014
• New Graphs Show Smoothed Housing Trends
• Housing Starts Stagnant at Low Level of Activity, Never Recovered, Not Recovering
• Payroll Employment Benchmark Revision Was Nil (Plus 7,000)
• Longer-Term Economic Detail Shows Ongoing Collapse, Shorter-Term, Pre-Election Fluff Has Been Mixed
• Why Is the Dollar Stronger and Gold Weaker
No. 659: August CPI, Real Retail Sales and Earnings  subscription required   September, 17th, 2014
• With Some Double-Counting, Sharp Declines in Headline Inflation Boosted Monthly Real Retail Sales and Earnings
• An Issue with Consistent Measurement of Gasoline Prices?
• August Annual Inflation: 1.7% (CPI-U), 1.6% (CPI-W), 9.4% (ShadowStats)
• Outlook Weakened for 2015 Social Security COLA
No. 658: Annual Income Survey, August PPI  subscription required   September, 16th, 2014
• Still No Relief Pending for the Economy or the Financial System
• Changes in 2013 Real Median Household Income and Income Dispersion Were Not Statistically Significant
• Stagnant Real Median Income Held at Post-Recession Low, Down 8.0% from Pre-Recession Peak, Lowest Since 1994, Below Levels of Late-1960s and Early-1970s
• Income Variance Held at Historic High, Suggestive of Still-Greater Economic and Financial Crises Ahead
• August Annual PPI Inflation Notched Higher
No. 657: August Industrial Production  subscription required   September, 15th, 2014
• August Production Decline Was on Top of Downside Revisions to July Activity
• Plunge in Auto Manufacturing Highlighted Poor-Quality Seasonal Adjustments and Difficulties in Inventory Accounting
No. 656: 2013 Consumer Expenditures, August Retail Sales, Gold  subscription required   September, 12th, 2014
• U.S. Economy Re-Entered Recession in 2013, Indicated by the BLS’s Annual Consumer Expenditure Survey
• 2013 Total Money Income Fell Even Before Inflation Adjustment
• Physical Gold, a Life Preserver That Could See Action Soon
• Day-to-Day Timing of a Great Financial Disaster Is a Tough Call, But the Alarm Bells Are Sounding
• Strong Headline Retail Sales Gain Was Not Statistically Significant
No. 655: August Payroll Employment and Unemployment, Money Supply M3  subscription required   September, 5th, 2014
• Payroll Jobs Growth Faltered in Context of Unusual Seasonal Factor Shifts
• August Unemployment Rate: 6.1% (U.3), 12.0% (U.6), 23.2% (ShadowStats)
• Downward Notch in Unemployment Rate Reflected Further Loss of Labor Force, Not the Unemployed Gaining Employment
• U.3 Rate Was Less than 979 Unemployed People Shy of Holding at 6.2%
• August 2014 Civilian Employment Still Shy of Pre-Recession Peak
• August Money Supply M3 at 4.6% Annual Growth
No. 654: July Median Household Income, Trade Deficit, Construction Spending  subscription required   September, 4th, 2014
• Neither Economic Boom nor Recovery Is Underway; Fundamentals Are Not in Place to Fuel or to Support Such a Circumstance
• Latest Median Household Income Reading Confirmed Severely Impaired Consumer and Economy
• Trade Deficit Continued to Widen Year-to-Year Despite Prior-Period Revisions and Unusual Seasonal Factors
• Net of Inflation, Construction Spending Surge Was Stagnation
No. 653: First Revision to Second-Quarter 2014 GDP  subscription required   August, 28th, 2014
• Economic Bluff and Bluster versus Reality, Politics and Elections
• Minimal Upside Revision to Second-Quarter GDP Left Gimmicked Growth Even More Heavily Overstated
• Underlying Reality Remains a Severely Impaired Consumer and Economy
• Monthly Economic Series to Turn Increasingly Negative
No. 652: July 2014 Durable Goods Orders, New- and Existing-Home Sales  subscription required   August, 26th, 2014
• 22.6% Gain in July Durable Goods Orders Was Just 0.8%, Net of an Irregular 318.0% Surge in Commercial-Aircraft Orders
• Booked Years in Advance, Commercial-Aircraft Orders Have Negligible Impact on Near-Term Economic Activity
• July Existing-Home Sales in Ninth Month of Annual Decline
• July New-Home Sales Held in Pattern of Stagnation, Amidst Ongoing Reporting Instabilities
No. 651: July 2014 CPI, Housing Starts, Real Retail Sales and Earnings, Monetary Base  subscription required   August, 19th, 2014
• Real Retail Sales Contracted for Second Month, Signaled Deepening Recession
• Real Earnings and Retail Sales Both Fell Below Second-Quarter Levels
• July Annual Inflation: 2.0% (CPI-U), 1.9%% (CPI-W), 9.7% (ShadowStats)
• Monetary Base Explodes to Record High
• Quality of Housing-Starts Reporting Sinks to New Low
No. 650: July 2014 Industrial Production, Producer Price Index (PPI)  subscription required   August, 18th, 2014
• Production Report Showed Somewhat Weaker Second-Quarter Activity Amidst Unusual Revision Patterns
• Construction Inflation Surged in the July
No. 649: July 2014 Retail Sales, Consumer Liquidity  subscription required   August, 13th, 2014
• Headline July Retail Sales Were Boosted to “Unchanged,” Thanks to Downside Prior-Period Revisions
• Net of Inflation, Real July Sales Likely Fell for Second Month
• Real July Sales Were Below Second-Quarter Average
• Consumer Liquidity Remains Structurally Impaired
No. 648: June 2014 Trade Balance, Monetary Conditions  subscription required   August, 6th, 2014
• Despite Narrowing in June Trade Deficit GDP Growth Remains Subject to Trade-Related Downside Revision
• Monetary Base at All-Time High
• Pace of Fed Monetization at 91% Year-to-Date 2014
• July M3 Annual Growth at Five-Year High of 4.7%
No. 647: July Employment and Unemployment, June Construction Spending  subscription required   August, 1st, 2014
• Minimally Weaker-Than-Consensus Labor Numbers— Unremarkable Except for the Regular, Horrendous Reporting Quality
• July Unemployment: 6.2% (U.3), 12.2% (U.6), 23.2% (ShadowStats)
• Real Construction Spending—Stagnation with a Recent Downside Bias
• Economy Remains in Serious Trouble
No. 646: Second-Quarter 2014 GDP, GDP Benchmark Revisions, Household Income  subscription required   July, 30th, 2014
• Second-Quarter GDP Surge Not Credible, Significant Downside Revisions Remain in Offing
• Actual Economic Activity Remains in Serious Trouble
• Historical GDP Revised Lower Where Better Data Were Available and Revised Higher Where Better Numbers Were Not

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