Economics Roundtable

May 2014 Payroll Employment

After 76 months, we finally got back to the prerecession level of payroll employment.

Click on the image to get a bigger version.


The best summary of the state of our economy is the graph (below) of employment as a fraction of population for people over 16 years old. The decrease is large, but the most troubling feature of the graph is the flat trend .

Click on the image to get a bigger version.

Graph-of-the-Year Candidates

Donald Marron likes European interest rates. Click on the image to get a bigger version. Can you find three distinct subperiods?

Brad DeLong favors the U.S. gdp gap.

Remember M1?

Money Supply M1 growth is now over 20% per year over a 12 month lag. M1 growth has touched 20% before, but not with excess reserves of $1.6 trillion. Where is M1 headed?

Click on the chart for a larger version.


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Calculated Risk

"Random thoughts on Politics and Economics”

September 16, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1336026
Economist Tom Lawler sent me the table below of short sales, foreclosures and cash buyers for several selected cities in August.

Comments from CR: Tom Lawler has been sending me this table every month for several years. I think it is very useful for looking at the trendfor ...

September 16, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1335949
From housing economist Tom Lawler:

Based on August realtor association/board/MLS reports released so far, I estimate that existing home sales as measured by the National Association of Realtors ran at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.12 million, down 0.6% from July’s pace and down 3.9% from last August’s ...

September 16, 2014, 11:03 am, 1335795
From the BLS:

The Producer Price Index for final demand was unchanged in August, seasonally adjusted, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Final demand prices advanced 0.1 percent in July and 0.4 percent in June. On an unadjusted basis, the index for final demand increased 1.8 ...

September 16, 2014, 11:03 am, 1335794
From the Census Bureau: Income, Poverty and Health Insurance Coverage in the United States: 2013

The nation’s official poverty rate in 2013 was 14.5 percent, down from 15.0 percent in 2012. The 45.3 million people living at or below the poverty line in 2013, for the third consecutive year, ...

September 15, 2014, 9:03 pm, 1335450
Container traffic gives us an idea about the volume of goods being exported and imported - and possibly some hints about the trade report for August since LA area ports handle about 40% of the nation's container port traffic.

The following graphs are for inbound and outbound traffic at ...

September 15, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1335243
Just an update ... during the recession, I wrote about the troubles in Las Vegas and included a chart of visitor and convention attendance: Lost Vegas.

Since then Las Vegas visitor traffic recovered to a new record high in 2012, although visitor traffic was down slightly in ...

September 15, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1335165
Excerpts from a note by Goldman Sach's chief economist Jan Hatzius: Q&A on "Why Renege Now?"

Q: You expect the phrase “considerable time after the asset purchase program ends” to remain in the statement. Many others don’t; what are they missing?

A: Many are missing the distinction between ...

September 15, 2014, 11:03 am, 1335086
From the Fed: Industrial production and Capacity Utilization

The index of industrial production edged down 0.1 percent in August, and the index for manufacturing output decreased 0.4 percent; the declines were the first for each since January. The gains in July for both indexes were revised down. The ...

September 15, 2014, 9:03 am, 1335010
From the NY Fed: Empire State Manufacturing Survey

The headline general business conditions index rose thirteen points to 27.5, a multiyear high. The new orders index moved up three points to 16.9, and the shipments index advanced two points to 27.1. ...

Employment indexes showed a slight ...

September 14, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1334798
This will be interesting to watch on Tuesday from the WSJ: Ties to Scotland Bring Debate to U.S.

With Scotland set to vote Thursday on whether to end a 307-year-old union with the U.K., Scottish-Americans and Scottish expatriates across the U.S. also are watching—and debating—a campaign that polls suggest ...