Showing posts from December, 2016

Minimum Wage In 2017

Minimum wage increases make sense in geographical areas where municipalities and other government organizations can decide what is healthy for their region.  Case in point- Manhattan and other ultra-high cost of living areas like San Francisco which hamper peoples income. 
To me it is all about housing. Economically I wish to see  - and help push forth - better policy that leaves more dollars in workers pockets, for saving or spending. 
Ratios and comps, from a regional based wage index in conjunction with regional consumer pricing indexes, makes sense for more action oriented economic decisions which lead to impactful legislation.
In Arizona the minimum wage will be increasing by more than 20%. As the minimum wage increases in states across the country this year - January 2017 - the costs will be passed along to the consumer, to a degree. California's minimum wage will increase to $10.50 per hour.
NYPost: City…

US Housing - CPI v. Price Index

Chart from Zermatt amd CS Hagan index unit-

Consumer Confidence (Data: November 2016)

The final reading of the University of Michigan's consumer sentiment for the United States rose to 98.2 in December 2016 compared to a preliminary figure of 98 and a final 93.8 in November. It was the highest reading since January 2004, as consumers expected a favorable impact of Trump's policies on the economy.
The gauge of current economic conditions came in at 111.9 from a preliminary reading of 112.1 and a final of 107.3 in November; and the barometer of future expectations rose to 89.5 from 88.9 in the preliminary estimate and 85.2 the previous month.
Americans expect the inflation rate to be 2.2 percent next year, compared with 2.4 percent in November; and 2.3 percent over the next 5 years, down from 2.6 percent the previous month.
- Joana Ferreira |
Here is a good reference point

US Housing 12/27/2016 - From October 31, 2016 - US S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price

Prior: 191.68, Actual: 191.79 - S&P/Case-Shiller US Home Price Index, released by the Standard & Poor's, is a leading measure for the US residential housing market, tracking changes in the value of residential real estate. Country: US Source: Standard & Poor's Prior: 191.68 Actual: 191.79 Date: 27-Dec-2016 14:00:00 Frequency: Monthly Period: 31-10-2016

Home Prices in 20 U.S. Cities Increased 5.1% in October -

Home Equity Wealth Makes a Comeback

(Source: Yale Economic Research)














Retail Has No Season: The New Normal

The headlines read: Shopping has no season.

The changes that have been looming over retail have now been signaled and compartmentalized into new trends of reality for retail and shopping. But the change is not stopping. These new trends are happening for a variety of reasons, but the internet cannot be blamed for the entirety of the uproar. This uproar has led to an empowerment of the consumer which has altered marketing, shopping and real estate, all of which has been changed greatly by the internet and continued developments in technology associated with connectivity and a flatter version of capitalism. Arguments can be made - regardless - that these changes are important and much needed. However, nothing is concrete at the moment but consumers can expect to pay up for (some) items in retail settings going forward: ex. Moleskin Reporter Notebook @ Local Art Shop is $13.00 on Amazon it is $9.99.
I fear that grocery is next: food is fresh, frozen or processed. It is also distribution…

CMS Regs for Long-Term Care

If you are in the SNF business you know regulation.
For your toolbox.

CMS New Regulation Phase 1-3
Phase One went into effect November, 2016

How The Hell Do You Pay For President Trump’s $1 Trillion Infrastructure Plan

Quickly: There should be an infrastructure bank. - Chad


Current proposals for funding Trump’s $1 trillion infrastructure project have been heavily criticized. In October, his economic advisors Wilbur Ross and Peter Navarro proposed funding the plan with tax credits to private investors, who would then borrow from the bond markets. An infrastructure bank tapping into private investment has also been suggested. Both rely on public/private partnerships. Michelle Chen, writing in The Nation on December 2, calls the plan “a full on privatization assault.”

To stimulate the economy, create new jobs and generate new GDP requires an injection of new money. Borrowing from the bond markets or off-balance-sheet in public/private partnerships won’t do it. If Congress won’t issue money directly, it should borrow from banks, which create money on their books when they make loans. 

- Ellen Brown (Link)

China, Meet Taiwan

Inflation Nation: CPI & Non-Farm Payrolls

You can make a ton of assumptions by looking at this chart.
While prices are rising, jobs are vanishing (that is one).

Chart Link
The chart above shows the percentage change in non-farm payrolls with the percentage change in the consumer price index starting in January of 1939. The divide begins in 1970. What is non-farm? Outside of it not being payrolls from a farm "nonfarm payroll is a monthly report generated and reported by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics intended to represent the total number of paid U.S. workers of any business" - Investopedia.
Nonfarm payroll employment is a compiled name for goods, construction and manufacturing companies in the US. It does not include farm workers, private household employees, or non-profit organization employees - Wikipedia

Latest Assassination Is For Syria

Modern assassinations are interesting, rather scary and in my personal opinion strange but they have not fallen out of favor for the insane or for toughies, unlike dueling or jousting. Adding the mere fact of the potential makes one wish to stay highly old fashioned and bolted up inside. The scare of being assassinated is pretty uncommon in America, and if one were to do a study on the statistics of assassinations I suspect you would see clusters of geographical hotbeds through the decades and crime trends. Regardless - assassinations - I have blogged about them before and one of my more popular posts is about an assassination via a pneumatic umbrella in London: See "Death By Umbrella"

Recent news:
An Ankara police officer dressed in a suit and tie shouted slogans about Syria’s civil war after he killed Russia’s ambassador to Turkey in front of stunned onlookers at a photo exhibition in the Turkish capital on Monday, according to officials and an Associated Press photographe…

In Bankruptcy Again, American Apparel Still Takes On Massive Debt

Filene's Basement filed Chapter 11 three times in 12 years, essentially Chapter 33, before closing for good. The idea is that a company goes into Chapter 11, restructures and emerges ready to whether the current economic industry conditions, and packed full of long term plan after long term plan for success, or at least an event that leads to value.
Every investment banker appreciates a good loan. However, apparel companies in this day and age cannot afford debt with a premium.
American Apparel is currently liquidating assets and most of it has been sold to Gildan.

Some companies never make it out of bankruptcy, and -- like Filene's -- end up liquidating. But for those that do emerge, and then tumble into bankruptcy again, it's a failure of everyone involved.

- Ed Altman, the Max L. Heine Professor of Finance at the Stern School of Business at New York University (Reuters 2012 Article Link)

Recent News: The retailer secured a $30 million financing package from post-bankruptc…

As Gold Pulls Down, Sharia Gold Standard Pushes Up

When all else fails, look to the east - the Middle East! London has been replaced by Asia, and now with a looming Sharia Standard taking place, Gold is still staying as vigilant as ever worldwide.

Gold is not a great investment. In modern times it has made many people money, but that is from volatility, market making and speculation. As for holding value, there are numerous out looks on that.

However, if Indian's continue to flock into the Middle East, and or if the Middle East deals gold out to India and South East Asia then it all makes sense. The funny thing is that gold seems to have lost its luster in English speaking countries. Gold is also a terrible inflation hedge. (See & NBER Slide)

I think Gold is overweight. $700.00 per troy oz is where is should be.  - Chad Hagan

Sharia Gold Standard Link
As the Islamic financial services market grows in size and importance, so does the need for a greater understanding of the intricate matters of Islamic financia…

United States Disposable Personal Income 1959-2016

This is on disposable - not discretionary. Disposable income is the amount of net income a household or individual has available to invest, save, or spend after income taxes.


More info on the topic without charts.

Inflation 1996 - 2016

Hooked on (USA) inflation - Chad

Dodd - Frank Rollback Despite NY Fed Stating Work Is Not Finished

The Financial Choice Act

Date: 12/31/2016
Index Value: 24.74
Standard Error: 4.38

Date: 12/31/2015
Index Value: 40
Standard Error: 4.22

Date: 12/31/2014
Index Value: 28.14
Standard Error: 3.48

Date: 12/31/2013
Index Value: 37.5
Standard Error: 3.36

Date: 12/31/2012
Index Value: 31.34
Standard Error: 3.27

Date: 12/31/2011
Index Value: 22.03
Standard Error: 2.7


LABOR FORCE, TOTAL United States  (Source: World Bank World Development Indicators)

Date: 12/31/2014
Value: 161074378

Date: 12/31/2013
Value: 159815818

Date: 12/31/2012
Value: 159324840

Date: 12/31/2011
Value: 157979096

A rollback of Dodd-Frank makes sense, but it must be limited.
I agree with many anti-inflation hawks that derivatives trading can create mega issues, and the risk from OTC derivatives requires higher capital requi…

There Is Such A Thing As Free Lunch - Free Lunch Is Opportunity Cost In Economics

Free Lunch Is Opportunity Cost In Economics -
Just saying: there is such thing as a free lunch, it usually involves a trade off (free lunch at a bar if you order a muinimum of drinks).

TINSTAAFL - There is no such thing as a free lunch. 
The above only makes sense in reference to equity speculators who expect no risk. I do not agree that the comment, acronym, or that the phrase replaces opportunity cost in economics. It is also my opinion that the phrase is dated and out of touch with modern economics.