Proverbs 22:3 NLT

A prudent person foresees danger and takes precautions. The simpleton goes blindly on and suffers the consequences.

-- (((Charles Finney, said the following: “If
there is a decay of conscience, the pulpit is responsible for it))) --


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In Defense Of A Nation

Monday, March 21, 2016

Existing Home Sales Plummet -

Existing Home Sales Plummet
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Do you think the economy is improving? The economy is the top problem indicated by voters on both sides of the political aisle, so if you think otherwise, you must be part of the government and therefore part of the problem.

As a warning as to how big of a problem it is among the voters, sales of existing homes in the U.S. fell 7.1% in February. This news stunned economists who had expected a normal February pullback but only to 2.8%.

But the housing report runs counter to almost every government economic report released in a timely fashion. It does, however, confirm rather vividly the newly revised consumer spending data that showed drops in both January and February.

This angst among the voting population has not yet been digested by the political class.

Rather bewildered the Beltway inhabitants point to the employment report and the manufacturing information which shows remarkable stability in the otherwise volatile economy. What they forgot to do was account for the rather heavy surge in unsold inventory sitting on the sidelines. Just because a product has been made and shipped to a wholesaler doesn't mean it is going to leave that arena and wholesale shelves are sagging under the weight of unsold merchandise.

The problem rests with the Fed and its woefully inadequate policies. The top people there follow Janet Yellen's lead and while she has been a blessing for a revival on Wall Street she has been a disaster for Main Street because she sees government as the ultimate cure for every problem.

Lowering interest rates in a rush was not as bad as keeping them there for what is approaching a decade. The effect of a loose money policy lessens the longer it is in place. This is the longest session of easy money in U.S. history. But Yellen and her predecessor, Ben (BS) Bernanke, have compounded the problem by increasing the printing press flow to historic levels. The one-two combination puts even more of the economy at risk by distorting the normal government numbers and reports more than usual.

While, in a good time, the government may have a 1 or 2% error factor built in by the "seasonal adjustments", today that error may be 7 or 8% of the final tally. With the bureaucrats playing ever larger games with the seasonal adjustments to have them achieve 'historical perspective' and add weight to their value, the probability of an error is magnified at every step.

Policy that has reduced the probability of a foreclosure to near zero--since most followed that statistic as an economic barometer--has also played a large part in perceived strength of the economy as opposed to a realistic view.

The slowdown in housing sales indicates two real concerns for the average person. The income they are making is losing the 'disposable/discretionary' aspect at a more alarming rate than previously thought. This loss of freedom is directly attributable to a loss of overall income--as suggested by the last jobs report which showed a distinct loss of earning power for existing jobs. 

The Washington crowd discarded this information as 'minor.' But when you have nearly 150 million jobs losing an average of $6 income a week, it makes an impact that cannot be measured without some distortion of the overall outcome. In this case more jobs did not mean more income for America, just more belt-tightening.

One item in the housing report really rankled. "Housing continues to be supported by a tightening labor market which is pushing up wage growth."

Now either these composers of this report are clueless or deliberately attempting to distort the perspective of Main Street. This report contradicts the report from BLS on wages.

One more note about the housing report for February. The analysis noted a six-month supply of used homes "is viewed as a healthy balance between supply and demand." It noted the current drop still left only a 4 and a half month supply on the market.

People are holding on to what they have very tightly. The consumer is not going to spend what he doesn't have. Those two statements show Main Street has not yet 'recovered.' Wall Street and Washington both ignored this warning sign...Even though the proof is showing up with the anti status quo voting in the primary season.

It is one thing to have minions trotting out false analysis of the facts. It is quite another when those at the top show they believe the reports and enact laws in that manner.

"I have sworn on the altar of God eternal hostility to every form of tyranny over the mind of man."--Thomas Jefferson

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