Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for July 17, 2018

Short Items of Interest—U.S. Economy Industrial Production Rises This is one of those measures that can be misinterpreted from time to time. It combines three sectors that are very different in terms of what they respond to, although they also have quite a bit in common. Industrial production includes manufacturing, utilities and mining. The latter...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for July 16, 2018

Short Items of Interest—U.S. Economy Low Jobless Rate The jobless rate is still very low—full employment low—but it has risen slightly and for all the right reasons. The best way to illustrate this is to look at both the U-3 and U-6 designations from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The U-6 numbers include those who have been characterized as "...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for July 13, 2018

Short Items of Interest—U.S. Economy Record Unemployment Lows May Not Be a Good Thing There are several analysts suggesting that the already low rate of joblessness will get lower still and could bottom out at around 3%. This is likely a good news, bad news situation. Part of the reason for the low rate is the U.S. has started to run out of workers...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for July 11, 2018

Short Items of Interest—U.S. Economy What Ends the Trade War? At this moment, it would appear that China and the U.S. are preparing to get locked in a death match regardless of what analysts warn. There has been an intense round of accusations and bombastic threats. It would seem that backing down is not in the cards. At some point, both China and ...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for July 10, 2018

Short Items of Interest—U.S. Economy Is the Tax Cut Fizzling Already? According to research from the San Francisco Fed, that is what seems to be happening to the tax cut as far as its impact on economic growth is concerned. This was the fear from the very start of that process. There is nothing unusual about a tax cut and certainly not when the eco...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for July 9, 2018

Short Items of Interest—U.S. Economy States Are Not Ready Now that the economists of the country are starting to coalesce around the idea the next recession will be in 2019 or 2020, there is some conversation as to whether the country is ready. Right now, the answer would have to be a resounding no. The fact is very few of the states have taken ste...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for July 6, 2018

Short Items of Interest—U.S. Economy Labor Market Adjustments The jobless rate is still very low—full employment low—but it has risen slightly and for all the right reasons. The best way to illustrate this is to look at both the U-3 and U-6 designations from the BLS. The U-6 numbers include those who have been characterized as "discouraged workers"...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for July 5, 2018

​ Short Items of Interest—U.S. Economy When Rapid Growth is Not All that Positive It is always better to have growth than not but motivation also matters. The latest data from the Purchasing Managers' Index is quite positive—a month that saw the PMI hit 60.2. That is the highest level seen since the end of the recession and is further proof of a he...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for July 2, 2018

Short Items of Interest—U.S. Economy Manufacturing Still Surging There may come a reckoning at some point and there may be several factors at work right now that are making the manufacturing sector grow faster than would seem logical. The point is that these factors are driving the economy at a rapid clip, while there is no real sign of impending d...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for June 29, 2018

Short Items of Interest—US Economy That Was Fast! For the last few years, there has been a steady drumbeat of expectation as regards the rate of inflation. The Fed stated often that it had a goal of 2% inflation at the core rate (the rate that excludes fuel and food). The signs all started to point to an outbreak as there was so much money getting ...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for June 28, 2018

Short Items of Interest—U.S. Economy Growth Not as Robust as Thought The third iteration of the U.S. GDP numbers shows less progress than was originally thought; it seems to have been the fault of the consumer. The last estimate of Q1 growth had been 2.2%, somewhat lower than the first estimate. Now the assertion is that growth in the quarter was o...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for June 27, 2018

Short Items of Interest—U.S. Economy CBO Warning on Interest Rates The latest report from the Congressional Budget Office is not saying anything that was not known prior, but there is a new sense of urgency as far as the message. The higher interest rates promised by the Federal Reserve will be combining with the running of big deficits to cost the...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for June 26, 2018

How Jerome Powell's Comments and GPDI Should Have Us Watching We use three basic recession indicators. One of them, Gross Private Domestic Investment (GPDI) has predicted 11 of the last 13 recessions dating back to the 1940s. The "Spidey Senses" are warming up, but aren't tingling just yet. Keeping corporate and private investment flowing is critic...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for June 22, 2018

Short Items of Interest—U.S. Economy Major Reorganization Proposed At this point, the plan, as developed by the Trump team, is more a series of talking points since it is the mid-term season and few in Congress have the desire to tackle something this complex and controversial. It bears closer examination as it would shift a great deal of current e...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for June 21, 2018

Short Items of Interest—US Economy Supreme Court Reverses Tax Decision The Supreme Court has overturned a previous decision on whether states can tax internet retailers. The old law said that states would not be able to collect sales taxes on an internet-based company unless that company had a physical presence in that state. Now, the law will allo...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for June 20, 2018

Short Items of Interest—U.S. Economy Recovery in Housing Starts For the last few months, there has been a steady drumbeat of concern as regards the state of the housing sector. It has been assumed that past patterns would start to manifest at some point—the headwinds that everybody seems to talk about. Higher home prices and higher mortgage rates w...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for June 18, 2018

Short Items of Interest—U.S. Economy Changes in the Supply Chain on the Immediate Horizon There are several factors that are all conspiring to force significant change in the way that companies handle their supply chain. Some of these changes have been coming for some time, but the pace has been accelerating due to the fact that driver shortages an...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for June 15, 2018

Short Items of Interest—U.S. Economy U.S. Growth Outpaces World Last year, the global economies were experiencing a rare period of unity. The U.S. was growing and so were Europe, Japan, China and pretty much everybody else. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) were both gushing o...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for June 14, 2018

Short Items of Interest—U.S. Economy Will Higher Borrowing Costs Impact Consumer? At some point, they will have to. The rate on a mortgage loan is now as high as it has been since 2013—standing at 4.54 for a 30-year fixed. Credit card rates will move up by a point or two, and so will car loans and most everything else. It would be assumed this woul...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for June 13, 2018

Short Items of Interest—U.S. Economy Producer Prices on the Rise Yesterday, the news from the consumer side of things indicated that there was reason for concern about the rise of inflation. Now, there is support for that notion from the producer price index as well. The rise was by 0.5% over levels seen in May, above the estimate of a 0.3% hike. O...
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