January 2014 Payroll Employment
We are getting closer to the previous peak.
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 .
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.
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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The Aleph Blog (David Markel)
At various points over the last 20 years, various friends have encouraged me to write a newsletter. I have resisted these requests, because in general, I don’t have respect for newsletter writers.
If you’ve got great ideas, invest in them, and start a firm to do so for others. Don’t ...
Rule: every rule has exceptions, including this one
In the long-run, and with hindsight, most actions of the market make sense. Sadly, we live in the short run, and our lives may only see one to 1.5 full macro-cycles of the market in our lives. We live in a haze, and ...
Rapid upward moves in volatility almost always presage a bounce rally.
Again, I am scraping the bottom of the barrel, but this is a common aspect of markets. When things get tough, scaredy-cats buy put options. That pushes up option implied volatilities. The same doesn’t happen when prices are rising, because ...
Rest of the World
Chinese Workers at IBM Factory on Strike Amid Company Sale http://t.co/TBE44EtSgI Chinese workers don’t want to work 4a Chinese company $$ Mar 07, 2014China Tropical Island Lures Rich Homebuyers Fleeing Smog http://t.co/SLi78lj115 Wealthy Chinese find ways 2escape pollution others endure $$ Mar 07, 2014China Banks Show Too-Connected-to-Fail Link to Loans http://t.co/XQXaAJNNy5 Wanna join my exclusive ...
Productivity increases are only so when they result in an increase of desired consumer goods purchasable at prior prices.
As I commented in my last piece, I’m scraping the bottom of the barrel as I come to the end of this series. I’ll keep this short. The concept of hedonics has ...
Can contingent claims theory for bond defaults be done on a cash flow/liquidity basis? KMV-type models seem to fail on severely distressed bonds that have time to breathe and repair.
We’re getting close to the end of this series, and I am scraping the bottom of the barrel. As with most ...
A letter from a reader:
My Mom asked me about 770 accounts (apparently, she wants to open one). I’ve reserched [sic] them, but can’t quite figure out if it’s legit or not. So much, what I’ve found is that it is really some kind of insurance policy, it’s tax free, and ...
While at RealMoney, I wrote a short series on data-mining. Copies of the articles are here: (one, two). I enjoyed writing them, and the most pleasant surprise was the favorable email from readers and fellow columnists. As a follow up, on April 13th, 2005, I wrote an article ...
In his annual report, though not his more well-known letter, Buffett talked about intrinsic value. It was on pages 107-108, and here it is:
Now let’s focus on a term that I mentioned earlier and that you will encounter in future annual reports.
Intrinsic value is an all-important concept that offers the ...
I’m going to try to take this topically. Here goes:
Buffett still has a strong desire for more acquisitions. After $18B to buy 52.6% of Heinz (counting in the low strike warrants), and all of NV Energy through MidAmerican, there were additional bolt-on acquisitions $3.1B after additional payments of $3.5B to buy ...