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  • August Nonfarm Payrolls misses estimates [View news story]

    Just FYI, statistics are generally misleading in isolation which is why it is helpful to have a compendium of confirming facts.

    I don't read the HuffPo but this was the first link on google dated August 22nd, 2013:
    "Median Household Income Dropped 4 Percent Since The End Of The Great Recession: Report "
    WASHINGTON — The average American household is earning less than when the Great Recession ended four years ago, according to a report released Wednesday.

    U.S. median household income, once adjusted for inflation, has fallen 4.4 percent in that time, according to the report from Sentier Research. The report is based on an analysis of Census Bureau data."

    It appears that all of the income gains you reference have gone to the top 1% in this country which is ironic given who the President happens to be.
    Sep 6 04:35 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • August Nonfarm Payrolls misses estimates [View news story]
    These are some bizarre numbers. Revised lower for previous months?

    U6 did drop a lot from June so that definitely is a positive.

    Weird given the noticeable drop in jobless claims.
    Sep 6 08:36 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Special Bulletin: Acampora Looking For 23% Correction [View article]
    Here's the link to the WSJ blog that tom_t mentioned:
    Godfather of Charts Turns Bearish; Targets Dow 12000
    “I’ve been bullish for over four years, so for me making this call, it’s important,” said Mr. Acampora, director of technical research at Altaira, Ltd.
    Mr. Acampora adds that the bear market he is anticipating is a “cyclical” one, meaning it’s likely to last just two or three months. Over the much longer term, he’s still as bullish as he’s ever been.

    “I’m still a long-term bull. We’re in an environment of a long-term secular bull market, that could last two decades,” Mr. Acampora said. “I’m just worried about the next few months.

    “If the Dow does drop to his 12000 target, it could create a “great buying opportunity,” he said. “But I’ll make that call when we get there. There’s no guarantee 12000 will hold.”
    Sep 4 03:01 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Special Bulletin: Acampora Looking For 23% Correction [View article]

    Doesn't that change in position make it notable?

    Couldn't get more bullish than he was two months ago so it would be pretty bad if he didn't make his change in opinion broadly known especially if people were following his advice.

    Wouldn't it actually be worse for him to believe this privately and keep silent publicly?

    Whether you believe him or not it does take a certain amount of courage to change your opinion so dramatically whether you agree with him or not.

    He uses technical analysis so from his standpoint the tea leaves and the planetary alignment or sunspots are now out of favor.

    When a perma-bull like him turns bearish perhaps it is a good sign.

    Sep 4 09:48 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Hindenburg Omen Market Crash Ahead... Ahoy! [View article]

    Of the two points the second one makes sense.

    The "," before an "and" is called the "Serial or Oxford" comma:
    "In punctuation, a serial comma or series comma (also called Oxford comma and Harvard comma) is a comma placed immediately before the coordinating conjunction (usually and, or, or nor) in a series of three or more terms. For example, a list of three countries might be punctuated either as "Portugal, Spain, and France" (with the serial comma), or as "Portugal, Spain and France" (without the serial comma).[1]"

    In my Jesuit highschool this was the comma form we were taught to use.

    I didn't know it was controversial until I started reading about it.

    Sep 4 09:32 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Hindenburg Omen Market Crash Ahead... Ahoy! [View article]

    You should have read it - it's about why its bunk for the average investor.
    Sep 3 08:54 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Secular Bull And Bear Markets [View article]

    The definition of Secular is meant to define the long term trend over an extended period of time usually 10 or more years (up/down) and then the label is put on it. According to Doug's chart above, stocks were worth less in 1950 then they were in 1930 which defines Secular Bear. The bottom was reached and then the bull took over driving the price above the 1930 level finally in around 1960 which indicated a Secular Bull.

    To your point, in practical terms, we have no clue where we are in an episode within the broader trend. Some of the best bull market episodes have occurred within Secular Bear Markets which is why market timing has always been such an intriguing concept :)
    "Definition of 'Secular Market'
    A market driven by forces that could be in place for many years, causing the price of a particular investment or asset class to rise or fall over a long period of time. In a secular bull market, strong investor sentiment drives prices higher, as there are more net buyers than sellers. In a secular bear market, weak sentiment causes selling pressure over an extended period of time.
    Investopedia Says
    Investopedia explains 'Secular Market'
    Secular markets are typically driven by large-scale national and worldwide events, which occur in combination. For example, wars, demographic/population shifts and governmental/political policies are all events that could drive secular markets.

    A secular bull market will have bear market periods within it, but it will not reverse the overlying trend of upward asset values. For example, most economists agree that U.S. equities were in a secular bull market from about 1980 to 2000, even though the stock market crash of 1987 occurred within the same time period. The losses from that bear market period were quickly recovered, and the market indexes continued to rise over the next 13 years. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index (S&P 500) rose from 120 to nearly 1,500 during this secular bull market.
    Sep 2 01:44 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Weighing The Week Ahead: Expect Volatility, Not Clarity [View article]

    I was not referring to the current period or 2012. My comments were focused on the slowdown in Q1 2011 as I stated above when the rate of growth slowed to negative 4.1%.

    No expert at that time even came close to forecasting that horrible a print and in fact the overwhelming consensus was that growth had accelerated so my point is how could so many experts have been so wrong?

    The contemporaneous data at the time was fairly robust as reported which completely contradicts the final result.

    What was about that period, which in my mind is fairly recent, that everyone missed?
    Sep 2 12:25 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Weighing The Week Ahead: Expect Volatility, Not Clarity [View article]

    Yes I am aware of that. The links you provided don't quantify how much of the revisions are due to the changes just that they have changed so that's why I am asking the question.

    It does not change the fact that in the then current real-time data, no one had any inkling of what was actually going on.

    Are you telling me that the NEGATIVE 4.1% change in rate of growth was due to this change?

    How many of your 19 data factors were hinting at this rate of change?

    Let me know!

    Under normal circumstances this kind of slowdown could have been called a recession.

    Thanks for the feedback because this really is helpful!
    Sep 1 10:54 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • "A Carbon Tax That America Could Live With" [View news story]
    Ever since time immemorial, the government's goal was to tax the air we breathe!

    Amazing how you can use a pseudo scientific political issue like man-made global warming to sell a tax!

    How does a tax save the world?

    Why not just "save the world' directly (smirk)?

    George Carlin on global warming:
    Sep 1 09:53 AM | 6 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Not Broken, Just Bent? [View article]
    My favorite paragraph of the article:

    "Now, I find it personally distressing that the market is so concerned with who the Fed Chairman will be. It shouldn’t matter that much, and here is something to reflect on: It wouldn't matter so much if monetary policy were as straightforward and as much of a science as central bankers are trying to convince us that it is. The fact that the market thinks it matters (as do I) is all the evidence you need that it does matter, and that central banking is more art than science. And you can guess what I think about most modern art, too, by the way."

    I would also add that investor's collective obsession with "what Congress will be doing" follows the same depressing logic.
    Sep 1 09:44 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Intel: Where's Haswell? [View article]

    Amazing article. I am with you on this because I am also in this quandary:

    "I believe that once Haswell starts to more broadly permeate the notebook ecosystem that it could help to drive customers who have been holding off on upgrading their current systems to finally make that new higher end purchase."

    I love that 13 inch Vaio you bought but in my world I would prefer a 15 inch design with:

    Haswell I7
    1920 display at least
    Win8 Pro (so I can downgrade if necessary)
    Touch Screen
    Pure SSD hard drive

    I have not found a single PC manufacturer with this config.

    Sony's Fit comes the closest but they still haven't offered Haswell on them which blows me away. Don't they want to sell this stuff?
    Sep 1 09:37 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Weighing The Week Ahead: Expect Volatility, Not Clarity [View article]

    I have been trying to get some feedback on the Q1 2011 GDP quarter and I was hoping you would pipe in.

    The only proof we have that GDP is at the current rate is based upon the pronouncement of the BEA which is always subject to revision. It was subject to revision when the BEA upgraded GDP growth in August 2008 - seven months into the "Great Recession".

    Case in point is Q1 2011 which was negative after revisions. Funny how no one remembers how massively they missed on that and that's recent history.

    Curious as to why no one picked up on and commented upon the revised 2011 Q1 GDP report. It went from 0.3% to negative 1.3%.

    The original advance estimate came in at 1.8% on April 28th for a total swing of 3.1%. That truly is an epic miss in my opinion.

    If revisions can be this large, is it really wise to be sanguine about the risks when we are in such tepid growth at present?

    Revisions like that only serve to fuel the conspiracy kooks and in this case they would have been vindicated.

    The 3rd official estimate of Q1 2011 was 1.9%:
    “Gross Domestic Product: First Quarter 2011 (Third Estimate); Corporate Profits: First Quarter 2011 (Revised Estimate)

    Real gross domestic product — the output of goods and services produced by labor and property
    located in the United States — increased at an annual rate of 1.9 percent in the first quarter of 2011, (that
    is, from the fourth quarter to the first quarter), according to the “third” estimate released by the Bureau
    of Economic Analysis. In the fourth quarter, real GDP increased 3.1 percent.”

    What’s actually astounding about this period is that Q4 2010 came in at 2.8% so the swing from Q4 to Q1 was negative 4.1%!!!

    Was there any real-time data at that time that even hinted at that magnitude of negative change?

    Truly fascinating from a data dump, geek point of view.

    PMI charts and the intermodal rail data were very strong (compared to today) for the period preceding and after the negative quarter and I have no idea how that data would have led you to think a strongly negative quarter was straight ahead.

    This is truly fascinating to me as I dug into it.

    I bet you could datamine Calculated Risk’s chart porn and find even more non-confirmatory signals.

    One of the interesting conclusions from studying the 2007-09 recession was that GDI was a more telling and accurate indicator in the real time and it was suggested that it was a better predictor of business cycle turns. Looking at real income growth lately you have to get a little nervous about the future.

    Q1 2011 truly was a bizarre economic period :)
    Sep 1 09:23 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Why Lumber Prices Matter For Stocks, With Comments On Housing Stocks [View article]

    Just FYI, saying "Auto sales just set the all-time best record for a single month" is only correct if you are referring to sales since the recession ended.

    This chart from Calculated Risk gives you a longer term perspective. The peak was the over 21 million rate in 2002 but I am not sure which month because the graph covers a long period of time.
    Aug 30 02:59 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Economic warning: Consumer Comfort Index falls out of recovery zone [View news story]
    that makes sense. I would give that a lot more weight than the other measures.
    Aug 29 10:46 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment