Horseshoes and Hand Grenades

There’s an old expression that says “close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades.”  So, we spent most of the day yesterday wondering whether the day’s 2336.45 lows were close enough to our long-held downside target of 2335.34.The tag was marred by premature reversals in oil and VIX.  Did the guys working the algos not get … continue reading →

Whistling Past the Graveyard

Only a couple of years ago, central bankers became adept at repairing the damage done to stocks after big shocks.  That changed with Brexit, when the strategy shifted to pushing stocks as high as possible before the damage was done… and, still doing all the requisite ramping after the fact. They perfected the technique after the … continue reading →

What Recovery?

It was thoughtful of eurostat to include the US in their chart.  Funny, that’s not the chart one would picture based on the MSM’s steady drumbeat of “recovery!” Germany, which had previously taken an ambivalent attitude about the soaring euro, might change its tune following its worst GDP print since Q408.  The main culprit?  Exports, … continue reading →

What Gives? Feb 13, 2013

It was worth watching the SOTU last night just to see Boehner’s contortions, trying to scowl in a dignified, statesman-like way.  Nothing much new in the speech or the response. More interesting was Mitch McConnell’s comment on CNBC last night that the sequester will go into effect. I don’t know any reputable economist who believes … continue reading →

Charts I’m Watching: Feb 11, 2013

It was a beautiful weekend here on the central California coast.  Seems like everyone was out surfing, golfing, taking walks on the beach — at least that’s what I heard.  I spent the weekend poring over ECRI’s Weekly Leading Indicators for the past 30 years. Okay, in the interest of fair disclosure, Friday night was … continue reading →

Is It or Isn’t It a Recession?

ECRI’s Weekly Leading Indicator (WLI) came out Friday at 130.2 — up from 129.6 the week before.  Further, they reported that the index’s annualized growth rate increased from 8.2 the previous week to 8.9% — the highest since May 2010.  I wondered: are they retracting their Sep 2011 recession forecast?  Are things really getting better? … continue reading →

Charts I’m Watching: Feb 1, 2013

ORIGINAL POST:  9:15 AM E-mini futures are up big overnight, but have yet to exceed Wednesday’s high. A positive revision in BLS’s Nov and Dec employment numbers makes 2012 look better than it did, but I’m not sure how it helps today’s 12.3 million unemployed or 8 million underemployed or 2.4 million marginally attached…   … continue reading →

When The Music Stops: Jan 31, 2013

  Lots more economic data out today.  Unemployment claims jumped 38,000 – much higher than expectations, but personal income also beat (thought to be explained by income shifting by those concerned about higher 2013 tax rates.) Real Consumer spending is probably the data set that best settles the conflict — up an anemic 0.2% in … continue reading →