We burrow into another Monday with all the zest and vigor of an aged and lame elephant, since plodding along slowly with a few investments and slow decision-making seems to work. Still holding to our gold decision (2001) and silver (2005) and bonds (2009) which thanks to the Fed last week announcing free money, or something near it until 2014 means we may not have to make any further decisions until later in the year after we see what March brings in the way of wars and such.
Meantime, however, Economist’s Disease is having one of its Herpes-like flare-up since this is the week of Big Numbers.
Tomorrow we’ll get the Housing report from Case Shiller/S&P and while working on our ongoing discussion of price channel technique for Peoplenomics subscribers Wednesday, a “quickie” chart of housing price channels is at least somewhat depressing, in that we’re in what looks like a heavy downturn and it will take a miracle report tomorrow to convince me there’s any reason to think the housing bubble isn’t still somewhere around mid burst:
I’ll show more details about where this leads in Wednesday’s Peoplenomics report, as I continue my “How to construct price channels and what to do with them once built” discussion, not to mention how to construct the probable outcome of the above chart by applying dash of Elliott wave theory rules to the already obvious decline. By doing this, we hope to answer one of mankind’s most perplexing questions: “How far is down?”
Even with a peek-a-boo rally over the red (dashed) trend line (unlikely as I read it), tomorrow’s Housing number seems more likely to indicate a continued decline in prices, especially since last week’s terrible housing start report which was down 7.3% from year earlier levels, although in fairness the error possibility was +/ 16.6% so maybe (we can hope) its all just one of those quirks of large numbers, like all the molecules in room ending up in one corner, which they do with some regularity every 85-90 quadrillion years, plus or minus a weekend on Long Island.
Why my focus on the Housing data? Much as we keep thinking about moving closer to our kids (Washington state and Colorado, which makes Twin Falls (or Boise) Idaho attractive, we look at the dashed lines I’ve drawn on the Housing price chart, look at the backlog of foreclosures in the pipeline, and wonder if we will ever get to a meaningful bottom in Housing.
As usual on Housing Index Day, we will publish at our “regular time” and will then issue an update about 8:15 to 8:20 AM (Central) after I have a chance to get the press release and quickly digest it.
In some of the cruelest wryrony delivered by Universe this early in the week, we notice that even the well-intended works of Habitat for Humanity up in Ohio are running into tough times as 25 Habitat homes are nearing foreclosure, reports the Columbus Dispatch.
The Christian Science Monitor reports some activists of the Occupy Movement are considering targeting of the foreclosure process, and we wonder if some language descriptors unfilled from several years back in the predictive linguistics might not year arise, in particularly one I’ve labeled 10XCSN..but we shall see as the year unfolds.
You did see Matt Taibbi’s latest?
Housing is not the “only number that matters” this week. A pretty good case can be made that today’s personal income and expenditure report, including the alleged “savings rate” (always good for a chuckle) might qualify. To give your monkey-mind something to go with the Cheerios, consider this:
Personal income increased $61.3 billion, or 0.5 percent, and disposable personal income (DPI) increased $47.1 billion, or 0.4 percent, in December, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis. Personal consumption expenditures (PCE) decreased $2.0 billion, or less than 0.1 percent. In November, personal income increased $7.4 billion, or 0.1 percent, DPI decreased $4.1 billion, or less than 0.1 percent, and PCE increased $11.4 billion, or 0.1 percent, based on revised estimates.
Real disposable income increased 0.3 percent in December, in contrast to a decrease of less than 0.1 percent in November. Real PCE decreased 0.1 percent, in contrast to an increase of 0.1 percent.
And the Savings Rate?
“The personal saving rate — personal saving as a percentage of disposable income — was 4.0 percent in December, compared with 3.5 percent in November.”
So, let me see…people saved more money over the month Christmas occurred? Don’t know about you, but this one ain’t passing my “smell test.”
Oh, but wait, what’s this little bit in the fine print?
Real PCE — PCE adjusted to remove price changes — decreased 0.1 percent in December, in contrast to an increase of 0.1 percent in November.
That leaves only the Consumer Confidence numbers at mid morning Tuesday along with the ADP and Challenger job numbers which should be a nice Bernankenaise Sauce to serve over Friday’s Unemployment Report. the utter collapse of the Baltic Dry shipping index to 726 just about guarantees us further deflation is yet to come.
Since the Baltic Dry tends to lead the market by some months we expect to profit from the likely decline (again) but as usual, this is not investment advice. I’ve evolved a certain set of tools to go with the outputs from the “rickety time machine” but additionally, you might want to include a set of socket wrenches, rosary beads, and some darts in your investment-picking toolkit.
All of which has me looking at selling gold, which is down this morning as the rest of the world seems to be grasping straws trying to find direction and hope. Or, search for what we call around here: “The One Number that Matters.”
Fear, Loathing, and the NWO Failure
Stock futures are off to a great start this morning, that is, if like me, you’ve been quietly accumulating a decent bearish position. Dow was down 75 points on the futures when I looked, but that’s only a taste of what the real decline will be once it gets underway.
In case you’re not comprehending (and that’s OK, it’s Monday and it’s early…) the Global Libretto reads like this:
NWO seizes a whole region (Europe) by installing a layer of government which is not responsive to one set of humans, a kind of model of how their NWO one-world government was supposed to work.
Unfortunately, it didn’t go well, since those nations which were not already bankrupt are now being dragged kicking and screaming into it.
After a lot of abuse, it looks like Greece will be the first real NWO coup victim, as essentially the EU is trying to take over the direct running of Greece which is not sitting well with Greek nationalists/patriots/independents/ and NWO-haters.
There…now that we’re clear on that, markets are nervous, not sure if the EU will be able to take over the financial reins of Greece so the markets are down.
Reports that EU confidence (emphasis on the con part) is higher after a 10-month dive, are noticing that Italy is still an exception and I expect that you’re aware of the grassroots anger toward Rome, the burdens of excess taxation to “feed the machine” and all that.
The fine distinction between how the corporate takedown of Greece is happening (versus how it was pulled off here) seems to my cynical eyes like Greece’s lack of Washington law firms and lobbyists to act as bagmen…
From the corporatist super-state perspective, these economic beatings are really for Greece’s (and anyone else who dares think independently) own good, you understand… Which is why the Second/Greatest Depression shows up: War by other means.
Tromping Tweedle Dum
Mitt Romney’s change of tactics seems to put him out front of Tweedle house speaker.
What we’re left wondering is whether Cain’s endorsement (or perhaps Sarah Palin’s) was the “kiss of death” in Florida polls? Or, perhaps voters are just seeing support of Newt as the political establishment self-sorting for us.
Regardless, the further ahead Romney gets, the more we worry about great misfortune for him, since the political machine tends to be a spiteful, sore a sore loser.
Taming the Ruling Class
You did see where a bill which would have required drug testing of welfare recipients in Indiana has been scuttled since being amended to include our favorite class of crack-monkeys: legislators.
Now, if we could just ban Washington lawmaker travel on anything but coach and no first class lines for security, we’d be moving in the direction of egalitarianism.
It’s never happen, of course, despite the claim that America is a land where equality rules. Some are still more equal than others.
March to War, Department
So, as we continue falling into the linguistic gravity well of March, we notice that the Arab League has pulled its mission to Syria. There are plenty of better vacation spots I can think of that are safer including Ciudad Juarez and Compton, just to mention a couple.
My Sanction is Bigger than Your Sanction
Let’s see here: WSJ reports the Reserve Bank of India is trying to find workaround to keep buying oil from Iran. There’s been talk gold might be used.
South Korea is looking for alternatives, too, says this VOA report.
And Russia is saying that the EU ban on Iranian oil is counterproductive. Not that it matters, since Iran is saying it will halt some oil exports, soon, too…a kind of one-downsmanship. (That’s the reciprocal of one-upsmanship…)
Meantime, Debka reports the US is delaying decommissioning of the marine helo carrier USS Ponce until after we get through the spring danger window…
You do know there’s a kind of economic war going on between secret Swiss banking advocates and the tax authorities in the US, right? An interesting update to that over here.
Space Goat Farts
Speaking of the Baltic, though this time in non-economic terms, did you happen to catch the CNN “Saturday Night Mysteries” segment (which is already on YouTube here) about the possible discovery of a flying saucer on the ocean floor?
Now, if they could just get film crews into the Russian and US bases which are racing to get at what’s down in Lake Vostok and the mascon there, we’d have some first-rate grist for the sci-fi mill.
More after this: