Economics Roundtable

May 2014 Payroll Employment

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

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Jobs

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 .


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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?


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Calculated Risk

"Random thoughts on Politics and Economics”


August 20, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1322042
From Andrew Ross at the San Francisco Chronicle: Household income hasn't shared in recovery

As of June, median annual household income was 4.8 percent below December 2007, when the recession began, dropping from $56,000 to $54,000. Going back to the good old days, it's down 5.9 percent from January ...


August 20, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1321899
Economist Tom Lawler sent me the updated table below of short sales, foreclosures and cash buyers for several selected cities in July.

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 ...


August 20, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1321827
Note: Most participants want to see more data - and several are still concerned that inflation is too low.

From the Fed: Minutes of the Federal Open Market Committee, July 29-30, 2014. Excerpts:

With respect to monetary policy over the medium run, participants generally agreed that labor ...


August 20, 2014, 11:03 am, 1321670
Note: This index is a leading indicator primarily for new Commercial Real Estate (CRE) investment.

From AIA: Architecture Billings Index Reaches Highest Mark Since 2007

The last three months have shown steadily increasing demand for design services and the Architecture Billings Index (ABI) is now at its ...


August 20, 2014, 7:03 am, 1321520
From the MBA: Mortgage Applications Increase in Latest MBA Weekly Survey

Mortgage applications increased 1.4 percent from one week earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending August 15, 2014. ...

The Refinance Index increased 3 percent from ...


August 19, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1321395
Wednesday:
• At 8:30 AM ET, the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) will release the results for the mortgage purchase applications index.

• During the day, the AIA's Architecture Billings Index for July (a leading indicator for commercial real estate).

• 2:00 PM, FOMC Minutes for the Meeting of ...


August 19, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1321248
The BLS reported this morning:

The Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W) increased 1.9 percent over the last 12 months to an index level of 234.525 (1982-84=100). For the month, the index fell 0.1 percent prior to seasonal adjustment.

CPI-W is the index that is ...


August 19, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1321082
The Cleveland Fed released the median CPI and the trimmed-mean CPI this morning:

According to the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, the median Consumer Price Index rose 0.1% (1.5% annualized rate) in July. The 16% trimmed-mean Consumer Price Index also increased 0.1% (1.6% annualized rate) during the month. The ...


August 19, 2014, 11:03 am, 1320999
This was a solid report for housing starts in July.

There were 585 thousand total housing starts during the first seven months of 2014 (not seasonally adjusted, NSA), up 9.1% from the 563 thousand during the same period of 2013. Single family starts are up 3%, and multi-family starts ...


August 19, 2014, 9:03 am, 1320919
From the Census Bureau: Permits, Starts and Completions

Housing Starts:
Privately-owned housing starts in July were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,093,000. This is 15.7 percent above the revised June estimate of 945,000 and is 21.7 percent above the July 2013 rate of 898,000.

Single-family housing ...