July 28, 2016

FBN Coverage of Wednesday’s DNC Protests Make a Mockery of AP’s

Wednesday night’s coverage of protests outside the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia delivered by Fox Business Network and the Associated Press could hard have differed more.

FBN reported “thousands” of angry protesters oustide who were in no way mollified by Bernie Sanders’ endorsement of Hillary Clinton or calls for unity. Geoff Mulvhill and Megan Trimble at the AP only described “tension … that lingered in pockets of Philadelphia” during a “mostly quiet Day 3,” and claimed there were only “hundreds” outside.

(more…)

Durable Goods Orders in May and June Nosedive Ahead of Friday’s 2Q16 GDP Report

Filed under: Economy,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 11:01 am

“All is well” my a**:

DurableGoodsOrdersShpmtsJune2016

Yesterday’s reported 4.0 percent June dive in seasonally adjusted new durable goods orders was miles below expectations of -1.5 percent, and came on top of a 2.8 percent decline in May (revised downward from -2.2 percent).

That’s a two-month, 6.7 percent drop, on top of flatness and declines in this area for at least the past 18 months.

This news does not bode well for tomorrow’s initial second-quarter GDP estimate, which the Atlanta Fed, likely leading the pack, knocked down to an annualized 1.8 percent. Moody’s estimate, headed by max 2015 Hillary Clinton contributor and Democratic Party adviser Mark Zandi, is still 2.6 percent.

The suspicion here is that subsequent months will reveal that the situation in the manufacturing sectos is even weaker than it now appears.

UPDATE: Tomorrow’s GDP report updates previous data from 2013 to the first quarter of 2016, so any predictions for the second quarter are subject to very high uncertainty based on how much previous figures are changed. The guess here is that GDP as of the end of the first quarter will be about 1 percent smaller than last reported, and that might serve to make the government’s first take on the second quarter (but perhaps not the subsequent estimates coming out in August and Septmber) a bit higher than 2.0 percent.

Initial Unemployment Claims (072816): 266K SA; Raw Claims (231K) Virtually Unchanged From Same Week Last Year

Filed under: Economy,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 10:32 am

From the Department of Labor:

SEASONALLY ADJUSTED DATA

In the week ending July 23, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 266,000, an increase of 14,000 from the previous week’s revised level. The previous week’s level was revised down by 1,000 from 253,000 to 252,000. The 4-week moving average was 256,500, a decrease of 1,000 from the previous week’s revised average. The previous week’s average was revised down by 250 from 257,750 to 257,500.

… UNADJUSTED DATA

The advance number of actual initial claims under state programs, unadjusted, totaled 231,325 in the week ending July 23, a decrease of 36,971 (or -13.8 percent) from the previous week. The seasonal factors had expected a decrease of 49,079 (or -18.3 percent) from the previous week. There were 230,314 initial claims in the comparable week in 2015.

There’s no bad news here. I would caution readers, however, especially given the work documented here, that the low layoff activity may likely be a reflection of economic sclerosis and a lack of mobility, and not really a reflection of a robust job market or economy.

Thursday Off-Topic (Moderated) Open Thread (072816)

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 6:00 am

This open thread is meant for commenters to post on items either briefly noted below (if any) or otherwise not covered at this blog. Rules are here.

Positivity: Dog’s heroic action saves 79-year-old owner’s life

Filed under: Positivity — Tom @ 5:55 am

From Hazle Township, Pennsylvania:

FRIDAY, JULY 22ND 2016

A Pennsylvania dog proved his ultimate loyalty on Thursday after his owner was injured while hiking.

The four legged hero named “Guy” led rescuers to his 79-year-old owner who fell and hit his head while hiking in the woods.

The dog reportedly ran up the bank where the rescuers were, and would stop every 20-30 feet, barking until he led them to where the elder man was lying.

Rescuers say the man had been in the woods for more than 12 hours when they found him. …

Go here for the rest of the story.