Economics Roundtable

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 .

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.


The Economics Roundtable is sponsored by EconModel.

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Blitz Bits (Steve Blitz)

"Blitz Bits on Capital Markets & the Economy

Policymakers’ Doings, Economic Data, and Capital Market Pricing”

February 11, 2014, 6:34 pm, 1223020
By focusing on the monthly bounces in the housing data one risks missing the bigger point – the two main assets supporting household balance sheets and, by extension, the global economy at large, have nowhere to go but sideways. Equities and homes are priced to a level that can be ...

February 11, 2014, 6:34 pm, 1223021
The consumer is back but only for holidays, birthdays and anniversaries. Yes, the April data are a payback for the boost to March from the early Easter but to end the analysis there is to understate how much more careful consumers are about spending their money. Control retail sales (sales ...

February 11, 2014, 6:34 pm, 1223022
The headline number showed the trade balance worsening by $996 million in March and the culprit was oil prices. The balance of trade in services improved by $813 million and the balance of trade in goods net of oil improved by $296 million – a $1.1 billion improvement in the ...

February 11, 2014, 6:34 pm, 1223023
The obvious truism is that turning monthly job losses into gains means getting firms to hire and the Diffusion Index shows that along those lines the number of firms adding workers has only managed to improve to levels equal to the lows of previous post-war recessions.

To Read ...

February 11, 2014, 6:34 pm, 1223019
It is time to stop searching for the right letter to describe the recovery. It isn’t a V and it won’t be a W, it is a hyphen – flat, low growth indicative of an economy in the process of deleveraging. There is no other interpretation for an add of ...

February 11, 2014, 6:34 pm, 1223018
Retail sales are not as negative as the headline, but they were also never as positive as April’s headline. Core retail sales, sales without spending for autos, building materials and gasoline, was up 0.10% in May after falling 0.22% in April. Discretionary retail sales, purchases of items people don’t have ...

February 11, 2014, 6:34 pm, 1223015
Looking at the 64,000 private sector jobs created in September, after accounting for the usual 24,000 in health care, the rest were either in temporary business services or at restaurants (which is kind of temporary work as well). Thankfully people who are employed still like to eat out.

February 11, 2014, 6:34 pm, 1223016
The “Great Recession” didn’t give way to the “Great Depression” – rather it transformed itself into the “Great Stall”. The July ISM data underscored the current circumstance with reported declines in net new orders in the manufacturing and non-manufacturing sectors. It is hard to interpret the ADP reported ...

February 11, 2014, 6:34 pm, 1223017
The FOMC is officially worried about growth and deflation risk and they are at the ready to act if need be. Financial conditions have become “less supportive of economic growth” but don’t believe for a minute that the reason rests on ”developments abroad” -- the economic recovery is now “proceeding” ...

February 11, 2014, 6:34 pm, 1223014
When does the Fed first tighten? We will know the answer by September. By that time the economy will have worked through enough of the current downside risks listed in the most interesting addition to the minutes. To the extent that the recovery is still intact by the fall we ...