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  • January saw 1,761 mass layoff events - those where at least 50 workers were let go - resulting in 182,261 job losses. The total is up 35 events from the prior month.  [View news story]
    Yes, the perma bulls and kool-aid dispensers will probably say it would have been worse if it were not for all those thousands of high paying new jobs created....
    Feb 23, 2010. 11:51 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Now the good jobs news: Tax withholding may be turning a corner - and you gotta have a job to have taxes withheld from it. And that number doesn't get revised.  [View news story]
    Clearly drunk from the kool-aid. I trade on fundamentals- which are being mostly ignored in this hope based rally.

    Regardless, there are two things which will not be improving any time soon: housing and employment. Talk to me in 2013 or so for employment and 2015 for housing.
    Feb 22, 2010. 07:52 PM | 6 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Now the good jobs news: Tax withholding may be turning a corner - and you gotta have a job to have taxes withheld from it. And that number doesn't get revised.  [View news story]
    Last gasp and still lower than 09 which wasn't a very good year now was it.
    Feb 22, 2010. 07:24 PM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • AIG (AIG) "has pulled out of what could have been a death spiral," showing stable revenue for its insurance units and improving its ability to repay taxpayers after the bailout. Property-casualty posted sales increases in three straight quarters last year, and sales of life insurance and retirement products rose for the first time since the bailout.  [View news story]
    It's just a shell game, wanna play?
    Feb 22, 2010. 12:10 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Bank run prevention warning No. 1: Ira Stoll notes Citigroup's (C) policy change (for Texas, mistakenly put on statements nationwide) reserving the right to require seven days' notice before customers withdraw money from checking. (via)  [View news story]
    Ah yes, between this an MM withdrawal restrictions the sheep can be fully fleeced without worry. Very very sad state of affairs. I for one will be stuffing my mattress with...? Well now that would be the question now wouldn't it.
    Feb 19, 2010. 03:39 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • MBA Q4 Delinquency Survey: Delinquency rate on one- to four-unit residential properties slipped to 9.47%, down 17 basis points from Q3's record high, and +159 bp Y/Y. Loans in foreclosure a record 4.58%, +11 bp Q/Q and +128 bp Y/Y. Sizable drop in 30-day rate means "we are likely seeing the beginning of the end of the unprecedented wave of mortgage delinquencies and foreclosures."  [View news story]
    Temporary at best. Shadow inventory is huge. But since the banks are basically allowed to ignore all accurate accounting and go with creative balance sheets - anything is possible.
    Feb 19, 2010. 10:56 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Obama will announce today a new initiative to help support homeowners hit hardest by the housing crisis. A senior administration official says Obama will designate $1.5B in TARP money to fund programs at local Housing Finance Agencies in California, Florida, Nevada, Arizona, and Michigan.  [View news story]
    Hey, 1.5B in free money - get some!
    Feb 19, 2010. 10:08 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Fed's balance sheet expanded to $2.259T from last week's $2.239T, as holdings of agency MBS crested the trillion-dollar mark: $1.026T compared with a previous $976.87B. Discount window borrowing (before this afternoon's rate hike) had risen to $87.73B per day.  [View news story]
    Let's see, borrow $88 billion a day for 0%, pump up market 3% per week = free money with no risk.
    Feb 18, 2010. 06:46 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Fed raises the discount rate to 0.75%, effective tomorrow, in a push for banks to borrow from the private market. The change is "not expected to lead to tighter financial conditions for households and businesses," but moving now instead of at March meeting suggests some urgency.  [View news story]
    All this proves is that our dear govt is as clueless as ever.
    Feb 18, 2010. 04:58 PM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Upside of Not Paying Your Mortgage [View article]
    I need to get on this free money bandwagon....
    Feb 18, 2010. 04:20 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • This morning's uptick in jobless claims makes it difficult to dismiss the idea that the nascent labor market recovery has run out of steam, James Picerno writes. "The recovery so far has been virtually all about slowing the bleeding. The second phase of net job creation has yet to begin, and based on today's numbers there's reason to wonder if the day of salvation is further down the road than we thought a few months back."  [View news story]
    So you must either be an exec or a young gun under 30 in good health and working for 50% of what your senior co-workers make. Don't tell me that businesses won't hire cheaper younger folks that ask for less and will sacrifice more and let the more experienced and expensive folks go - it happens all the time.

    And I think your comments prove his point exactly - you'll a fool if you aren't planning for a worst case scenario. Hope for the best, plan for the worst should be everyone's motto.
    Feb 18, 2010. 01:38 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Treasury Budget: January deficit was $43B vs. $46B expected - the 16th straight monthly shortfall. Receipts: $205B; outlays: $248B.  [View news story]
    What about all the off balance sheet items: Fannie/Freddie/FHA, AIG, etc. What a house of cards.
    Feb 17, 2010. 02:35 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Combined GDP of the world's industrialized economies grew at its strongest pace since the first quarter of 2007. Economic output for the 30-nation Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development in 4Q09 rose 0.8% from 3Q09 but fell 0.7% year-over-year. The gain came despite meager 0.1% growth in Europe.  [View news story]
    It's sad that all that stimulus has had such a small effect.
    Feb 17, 2010. 11:05 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • With more than 75% of S&P 500 earnings now booked, U.S. firms continue to broadly outperform, Deutsche Bank notes, with a 76:22 beat-to-miss ratio, following an 83:16 ratio in Q3 and 76:23 in Q2. Some of that may be due to analyst lag, but European stocks continue to trail their U.S. brethren, with a beat/miss ratio of just 57:43 this quarter.  [View news story]
    The only thing that proves is that analysts are very bad at their jobs and companies feed them what they want.
    Feb 16, 2010. 11:17 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Mortgage rates fell this week and could have further to fall in coming weeks. With Fannie Mae (FNM) and Freddie Mac (FRE) buying delinquent loans, rates could drop in the short-term because investors will sell higher-yield bonds to buy par coupons, which drive mortgage rates. Analysts still expect rates to rise later in the spring when the Fed stops buying mortgage-backed securities.  [View news story]
    They will try and stop until the Fall or so when housing continues to falling of the cliff.
    Feb 12, 2010. 12:56 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment