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Steven Hansen

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  • Gasoline Purchases Plummeting: Another Recession Indicator? [View article]
    1) Lakshman is not a fringe voice - unless one considers a fringe being somebody that does not share your view.
    2) since my post disputed views that gasoline usage is a "good" economic indicator, i did not list the pundits. this is not a personal thing to me, and a roll-call just makes this personal.
    Sep 24 09:10 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Gasoline Purchases Plummeting: Another Recession Indicator? [View article]
    it failed because
    - Ceridan's market share must have changed (it was inconsistent with total diesel usage variations) - and one cannot use the government data because it lags real time too much,
    - i suspect the mix between rail and road changed.
    - fuel consumption improved significantly with no analytical methodology available to adjust.

    i think UCLA was embarrassed by the economy not following its predictions.
    Sep 24 09:04 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Unemployment In A World Without Jobs [View article]
    just so i go on record - i had no agenda or direction for this article. my weekend articles are meant as think pieces. no issue is black or white . in general, i am a robot lover and a lover of water. that does not mean i want the world covered only with water.

    humans need to manage (or not manage) their environment. they make the choice. based on the current structure, people need to work to make money. man develops a machine, in this case its sole purpose is to replace man's labor period - whether it is a health care worker or walmart employee. image a retail store with no employees - even the stores manager (overseer) is a robot.

    this time is different. in the past, technology advances have opened more jobs than destroyed. but when the advancement is to replace literally all jobs, technology will no longer create jobs.

    the genie is out of the box - and the destruction of jobs will only increase. humans need to rethink their structure.
    Aug 26 10:43 AM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Weekly Review: Economy Still Not Operating On All Cylinders [View instapost]
    Cautious - at 1.5% economic growth, i see little difference between your view and mine :)
    Aug 19 07:54 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Weekly Economic Summary: Good Data Except One Datapoint [View instapost]
    yes, my take is the same as yours - we will muddle until a dynamic occurs which alters the equation ...
    Aug 13 09:10 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Weekly Economic Summary: Good Data Except One Datapoint [View instapost]
    it is becoming more and more likely that insiders are paid a very high percentage of income with stock (this was less likely 50 years ago). most investment advisers say not to hold much investment in the company which pays your salary.

    i look at trend lines in this series - and my read is that trends are flat.
    Aug 12 08:48 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Economic Rollercoaster Gaining Downward Momentum [View article]
    very good comment. did you read all the cbo's qualifications on obamacare?

    http://bit.ly/MPPA2C
    Jul 31 08:30 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Economic Rollercoaster Gaining Downward Momentum [View article]
    Tom, agree that a roller coaster is not a good simile for GDP - the roller coaster analogy was meant for economic news in general (which does include the markets).
    Jul 29 11:21 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Weekly Economy Review: Are There Any Recessionary Flags? [View instapost]
    Moon, 100% agree with you. but what politician would go along with this approach?
    Jul 22 08:26 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Are Healthcare, Food, And Gas Killing Consumer Spending? [View article]
    Allstreets,
    all demand is elastic over time - it depends how fast change occurs. HOWEVER, i agree with your overall sentiment. the lower end of the population in many ways does not have the means to take advantage of many of the options to keep their budgets under control.
    Jul 15 10:55 AM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Are Healthcare, Food, And Gas Killing Consumer Spending? [View article]
    Whitehawk,
    please note as John Lounsbury points out, this whole subject of regulation is like arguing which religion is the best. we all have opinion, but are unable to drive the convincing nail into the coffin.

    i tend to believe that the issue is not regulation per se, but the way one goes about regulation. as one who has been the subject of corporate, external, and government audits - i can assure you that an auditor cannot find anything i did not want them to find. the only way an auditor has a chance of finding something is to embed the auditor. if the auditor is embedded, then they start identifying with the audited - instead of being the auditor.

    solutions are all less than perfect. my best-of-the-bad-options is to to gravitate towards criminal charges (not civil) against the entire chain of command. corporation and business management always claim they did not know what was going on - which is true because they did not want to look - and the gating process to go into management makes sure that you are the type to shield your bosses from things it is better for them not to know.

    the other side of the coin is regulation
    - that prevents market entry - and limits competition;
    - because of free trade, makes it easier (cheaper) to produce the item elsewhere.

    likely the current situation is too heavily reliant on audit - and the cost element of each line of regulation has not been properly thought out.
    Jul 15 08:36 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Are Healthcare, Food, And Gas Killing Consumer Spending? [View article]
    Allstreet -
    "Note that gasoline went up 50% while gasoline consumption dropped only 15%. That's a demonstration that gasoline is practically an unavoidable purchase, so it's relatively price inelastic. Similarly food prices up 18%, but consumption down only 2%. Healthcare prices up 12% but spending up only 7%."

    the graphs say the following:

    Note that gasoline went up 50% while TOTAL gasoline SPENDING dropped 15%. Similarly food prices up 18%, but TOTAL SPENDING IS down 2%. Healthcare prices up 12% but TOTAL spending up only 7%.
    Jul 15 07:56 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Is Joe Sixpack Returning To Consumption? [View article]
    GreenRiver -
    take a look at the following graphic which will be in next week's seeking alpha post:
    http://bit.ly/RVzPWm
    this graph comes from the personal consumption expenditures you discuss. it shows costs up - but expenditures expressed as a indexed percent of the total PCE is constant.

    my take is more and more people are going without medical coverage :(
    Jul 10 08:36 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Is Joe Sixpack Returning To Consumption? [View article]
    Ed,
    agreed. no one will make me believe that a larger segment of the economy has now gone underground in the new normal.
    Jul 8 09:13 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Is Joe Sixpack Returning To Consumption? [View article]
    allstreets..
    the income distribution likely is distorting the data - we all think of this but there are specific data series to confirm (or refute). we have to use data series like
    http://bit.ly/N8qR7t
    to say that the average Joe is making more money (this removes the bank ceo's).

    i think the big difference is that a whole bunch of people do not have a job (either high or low paid)
    http://bit.ly/MfmDcf

    gasoline price increases are average for the cost increases seen by the consumer.
    http://bit.ly/N8qNET

    "Finally, the idea that the recent "rise" in housing values, which I sincerely doubt exists, would have any meaningful positive wealth effect on GNP strikes me as preposterous. "
    housing price deltas vary by zip code. i would think too that the average consumer must see the increases (and you do not). i live somewhere where the improvement is obvious. However, because of other new normal factors such a demographic shift - we too are reluctant to declare this link valid in the new normal (even though it is valid historically).
    Jul 8 09:10 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
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