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Squeezing The Consumer From Both Sides

Authored by 720Global's Michael Lebowitz via RealInvestmentAdvice.com, The Federal Reserve raised the Federal Funds rate on December 13, 2017, marking the fifth increase over the last two years.  Even with interest rates remaining at historically low levels, the Fed’s actions are resulting in greater interest expense for short-term and floating rate borrowers. The effect of […]


“Are Central Bankers About To Lose Control?” The WSJ Asks And Citi Answers

In an article published by the WSJ today, which was originally titled “Are Central Bankers About to Lose Control?” but after some shoulder taps was renamed to the far more neutral “Can Central Banks Keep Control of Interest Rates?” author Jon Sindreu looks at the current Goldilocks state of the market, in which global growth […]


US Consumers Tap Out: Personal Savings Rate Plunges To 10 Year Low While Americans Splurge

The latest confirmation that the US consumer is now effectively tapped out came moments ago when the Dept of Commerce reported that in November, Personal Income rose by a lower than expected 0.3% (exp. 0.4%), while US consumers continued to splurge at an accelerated rate, with personal spending rising 0.6%, above the 0.5% expected, as […]


Why We Should Worry About China

Authored by Daniel Lacalle via The Mises Institute, Many of our readers might remember the late 80s. There were hundreds of movies, songs and books about the inevitable Japanese economic invasion. The ones of you that did not live that period can see that it did not happen. Why? Because the Japanese growth miracle was […]


In Defense Of Bitcoin Hoarding

Authored by Jeffrey Tucker via The Foundation of Economic Education, In Internet slang, they are called the HODLers, the people who are clinging to their Bitcoin and refusing to spend it. Instead, they just refresh their wallet apps, feeling richer by day while deferring consumption. Many of these burgeoning millionaires live like paupers. I’ve met […]


Savings Rate Ticks Higher As Income Growth Hits 2 Year Highs

For the 22nd straight month, US spending growth outpaced income growth in October. The last time income growth was higher than this was Dec 2015, but spending growth is stalling… Mostly driven by Private workers wage growth… However, month-over-month saw slightly better than expected income growth of 0.4% (while spending growth slowed drastically from a […]


“I Was Expecting Many More People”: Black Friday Tumbles To 3rd Spot In Busiest Shopping Days Of The Year

It has been an odd year for retail: with an estimated 6,000 store closures, and 65,000 fewer retail jobs than at the start of the year, many have said shorting retail, and especially malls, is the next “big short” trade. Indeed, one look at the performance of the mall heavy CMBX 6 BBB- tranche confirms […]


Is America In Terminal Decline?

Authored by Raul Ilargi Meijer via The Automatic Earth blog, John Rubino recently posted a graph from Bob Prechter’s Elliot Wave that points to some ominous signs. It depicts the S&P 500, combined with consumer confidence and savings rate. As the accompanying video at Elliott Wave, What “Too Confident to Save” Means for Stocks, shows, […]


The Disconcerting Message Behind The Plummeting Savings Rate

Two weeks ago we noted how the savings rate in the US had plunged to 3.1% in September 2017, its lowest rate since December 2007 which, coincidentally, was when the last recession started. Probably nothing. The September 2017 figure was less than half the most recent peak of 6.3% in October 2015. As we noted […]


U.K. Litigation Cases On Defaulted Consumer Debts Soar Beyond 2008 Levels

Last month, S&P warned that UK lenders could incur £30 billion of losses on their consumer lending portfolios consisting of credit cards, personal and auto loans if interest rates and unemployment rose sharply.  Much like in the U.S., S&P warned that "loose monetary policy, cheap central bank term funding schemes and benign economic conditions" had […]


UBS Makes A Striking Discovery: Ex-Energy, US GDP Growth Is The Slowest Since 2010

Last week, UBS released its Global Economic Outlook forecast for 2018-2019, which coming in at over 220 pages and with more than 270 charts, is rather “difficult to summarize” as UBS’ chief economist Arend Kapteyn snarkily notes. Still, as Kapteyn helpfully summarizes, the 3 charts below capture some of the main themes from the report, […]


The Savings Rate Conundrum

Authored by Lance Roberts via RealInvestmentAdvice.com, The economy is booming. Employment is at decade lows. Unemployment claims are at the lowest levels in 40-years. The stock market is at record highs and climbing. Consumers are more confident than they have been in a decade. Wages are finally showing signs of growth. What’s not to love? […]


US Savings Rate Crashes To 10 Year Lows As Spending Surges Most Since ‘Cash For Clunkers’

While incomes grew at an expected 0.4% MoM, US consumers spent at an exuberant 1.0% MoM clip – the biggest monthly rise since Aug 2009 (cash for clunkers). To cover this spending surge, the savings rate tumbled.   The last time – Aug 09 – that spending surged like this was when the government unleashed […]


Why Bond Traders Have Never Been More Confused: “The Rates Market Is Sending Diametrically Opposite Messages”

Last weekend, as Deutsche Bank’s derivatives strategist Aleksandar Kocic was looking at the spread between the short and long end of the curve, and while contemplating the lack of market volatility, he concluded that “given where long rates are, Fed appears as overly hawkish – it has only two more hikes to go and, for […]


The $2.5 Trillion Paradox: “While The Short End Is Optimistic, The Long End Has Never Been More Pessimistic”

Last weekend, as Deutsche Bank’s derivatives strategist Aleksandar Kocic was looking at the spread between the short and long end of the curve, and while contemplating the lack of market volatility, he concluded that “given where long rates are, Fed appears as overly hawkish – it has only two more hikes to go and, for […]