30 October 2009

Economics Update

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Too True!
H/t Calculated Risk,
The Artist should have his website up shortly

Fannie Mae Single Family Delinquencies..OUCH
You know with this recession being over and all, maybe someone should tell the consumer, because consumer spending fell by 0.5% in September, the biggest drop in 9-months.

So consumers are skittish, as a new consumer sentiment survey, this time the Reuters / University of Michigan Survey of Consumer Sentiment Survey, fell in October, down to U Michigan survey, 70.6 from 73.5 in September.

So, that's like 3 different consumer sentiment surveys that I've seen in the past 3 days, one up, and two down.

You have permission to be confused.

There are still a lot of people hurting out there, as shown by the Fannie Mae single family delinquency numbers for August. (see graph pr0n)

I am not seeing even a smidgen of a moderation there.

In the central bank world, the banks appear to be slowly walking back from the extreme measures that they took a year ago, with the Federal reserve re-instituting regulations that it suspended which allowed banks to supply capital to affiliates, which is generally a no-no, and the Bank of Japan is slowly pulling out of the credit markets.

Basically, they are trying to slow-walk their quantitative easing (printing money) measures.

It does not mean that they will be raising rates soon, but it does mean that there is a very gradual tightening of money going on.

In any case, the consumer spending numbers have rattled the markets, pushing US treasuries higher.

In stocks, the VIX, an index of stock volatility spiked upward by 24%, which indicates that market participants are expecting major swings in the stock market.

The bearish news today also pushed oil down, on demand concerns, and pushed the dollar up, on a flight to safety.


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