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Analysis Topic: Economic Trends Analysis

The analysis published under this topic are as follows.

Economics

Friday, April 10, 2015

Euro-zone Crisis - Germany’s Trade Surplus Is a Problem / Economics / Eurozone Debt Crisis

By: John_Mauldin

In Code Red I wrote a great deal about trade imbalances among the various European countries, which were at the heart of the European sovereign debt problem. As the peripheral countries have tried to rebalance their trade deficits with Northern Europe and especially with Germany, they have seen their relative wages fall and deflation become a problem. Greece is the poster child.

The north-south imbalance in the Eurozone is still a problem today. In this week’s Outside the Box, I highlight a recent blog on that topic from none other than former Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke. He first published his blog on March 30, and it appears he is going to post to three times a week. It’s a very thoughtful commentary, and I will admit to having subscribed. He is going back to his “professor” style and communicates very clearly.

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Economics

Wednesday, April 08, 2015

Economists in Glass Houses / Economics / Economic Theory

By: John_Mauldin

For many economists, the chicken and egg question is, which came first, consumption or production? What drives growth? Let’s continue with our series on debt, in which I have been contrasting my views with those of Paul Krugman.

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Economics

Monday, April 06, 2015

Portrait of the Classical Gold Standard / Economics / Global Financial System

By: MISES

Marcia Christoff-Kurapovna writes: "The world that disappeared in 1914 appeared, in retrospect, something like our picture of Paradise," wrote the economist Cecil Hirsch in his June 1934 review of R.W. Hawtrey’s classic, The Art of Central Banking (1933). Hirsch bemoaned the loss of the far-sighted restraint that had once prevailed among the "bankers' banks" of the West, concluding that modern times "had failed to attain the standard of wisdom and foresight that prevailed in the 19th century."

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Economics

Sunday, April 05, 2015

New Zealand Economy - There’s Trouble Brewing In Middle Earth / Economics / Asian Economies

By: Raul_I_Meijer

For the second time in three years, I’m fortunate enough to spend some time in New Zealand (or Aotearoa). In 2012, it was all mostly a pretty crazy touring schedule, but this time is a bit quieter. Still get to meet tons of people though, in between the relentless Automatic Earth publishing schedule. And of course people want to ask, once they know what I do, how I think their country is doing.

My answer is I think New Zealand is much better off than most other countries, but not because they’re presently richer (disappointing for many). They’re better off because of the potential here. Which isn’t being used much at all right now. In fact, New Zealand does about everything wrong on a political and macro-economic scale. More about that below.

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Economics

Saturday, April 04, 2015

Is the U.S. Government Lying About Unemployment Statistics? / Economics / Economic Statistics

By: DailyWealth

Dr. David Eifrig writes: Over the last two days, I've shown you how I gauge the health of the U.S. economy.

I've also shown you why you can't blindly trust the government's economic statistics. Not because of some conspiracy agenda... but because measuring a $17 trillion economy is extremely difficult.

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Economics

Saturday, April 04, 2015

U.S. Jobs Report Huge Miss, +126k Half Forecasts / Economics / Employment

By: Mike_Shedlock

Initial Reaction

For a huge change we see the existing pattern of a strong establishment survey but a poor household survey has been replaced by weakness all around.

Last month I stated "The household survey varies more widely, and the tendency is for one to catch up to the other, over time. The question, as always, is which way?"

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Economics

Friday, April 03, 2015

Is the CPI Telling Us the Full Story on Inflation? / Economics / Inflation

By: DailyWealth

Dr. David Eifrig writes: You can't fully trust economic statistics...

As I explained in yesterday's essay, measuring the economy is difficult. Very difficult. And in a sense, there are no "real" numbers.

But the official measures of inflation, gross domestic product (GDP), or employment aren't the result of some conspiracy agenda. And a close look at GDP data confirms the economy is still slowly recovering from the financial crisis.

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Economics

Thursday, April 02, 2015

The Great Inflation Canard / Economics / Inflation

By: Steve_H_Hanke

Charles W. Calomiris and Peter Ireland, two distinguished economists and friends, wrote an edifying piece in The Wall Street Journal on 19 February 2015. That said, their article contains a great inflation canard.

They write that “Fed officials should remind markets that monetary policy takes time to work its way through the economy—what Milton Friedman famously referred to as “long and variable lags”—and on inflation.” That’s now a canard.

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Economics

Wednesday, April 01, 2015

Is the U.S. Headed for a Recession? / Economics / Recession 2015

By: DailyWealth

Dr. David Eifrig writes: Are the government's economic statistics to be trusted at all?

Every economic statistic – from gross domestic product (GDP) to employment to inflation – comes from some agency performing calculations in a complex environment. But what do these numbers actually show us? Are these figures finagled by the government or other interested parties?

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Economics

Wednesday, April 01, 2015

Our Current Illusion of Economic Prosperity / Economics / US Debt

By: Frank_Hollenbeck

President Obama and Fed Chair Janet Yellen have been crowing about improving economic conditions in the US. Unemployment is down to 5.5 percent and growth in 2014 hit 2.2 percent.

Journalists and economists point to this improvement as proof that quantitative easing was effective.

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Economics

Monday, March 30, 2015

Where the U.S. Economy Is Heading According to Buffett / Economics / US Economy

By: Investment_U

Marc Lichtenfeld writes: Many investors like to follow the “smart money.” And it doesn’t get much smarter than Warren Buffett. So it’s worth examining what stocks Buffett is buying and selling, not just for individual names, but to gauge his overall comfort with the market.

In the quarter ending in December, Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE: BRK) sold all of its shares in Exxon Mobil (NYSE: XOM) and ConocoPhillips (NYSE: COP). It also reduced its holdings in National Oilwell Varco (NYSE: NOV) by about 18%. A lot of Buffett watchers have interpreted his reduced holdings in energy as bad news for the industry.

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Economics

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Why We Need Deflation and Higher Interest Rates / Economics / Deflation

By: MISES

John P. Cochran writes: The Fed is seemingly slightly out of step with other central bankers as it recently hinted at possible future rate hikes in the official announcement following its March 20, 2015 meeting. But as many commentators have recognized, Janet Yellen, a strong proponent of Keynesian more-inflation-as-cure-for-unemployment policy, later downplayed the significance of the announcement. She was careful to indicate that rates would stay low for the near future and when (and if) rate increases begin, they will be measured. The Fed, like central bankers elsewhere, stays committed to a 2 percent inflation target as it continues a policy driven by a fear of deflation, a fear that is not supported by either good economic theory or economic history properly interpreted.

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Economics

Friday, March 27, 2015

Deflation Watch: Key U.S. Economic Measures Turn South / Economics / Deflation

By: EWI

A developing deflationary trend hinders the economic "recovery"

Lots of media stories say the Federal Reserve is weighing signs of economic strength to see if the economy is ripe for higher interest rates.

In truth, economic weakness has appeared on various fronts.

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Economics

Friday, March 27, 2015

BEA Leaves Q4 2014 U.S. GDP Growth Essentially Unchanged at 2.22% / Economics / US Economy

By: CMI

In their third estimate of the US GDP for the fourth quarter of 2014, the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) reported that the economy was growing at a +2.22% annualized rate, effectively unchanged (+0.04%) from the +2.18% previously reported and down -2.74% from the growth rate reported for the prior quarter.

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Economics

Friday, March 27, 2015

Brazil Economy Victim of Vulgar Keynesianism / Economics / Emerging Markets

By: MISES

Antony P. Mueller writes: All Keynesian roads lead to stagflation. That was the case in Europe and in the United States in the 1970s when both stagnation and inflation hit the economies at the same time. Currently, this is the case in Brazil.

Since coming into power in 2003, the Brazilian labor government has religiously implemented the economic policy doctrine of growth by spending. Now, the country has fallen into stagnation with a recession looming while inflation is on the rise. All economic indicators flash red lights: from economic growth to inflation and the exchange rate, from productivity to investment and industrial production.

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Economics

Thursday, March 26, 2015

The Crude Oil Price Crash and China Economic Slow Down / Economics / China Economy

By: Raul_I_Meijer

This is another essay from friend and regular contributor of The Automatic Earth, Euan Mearns at Energy Matters.

One comment on my part: Euan says ‘This has lead to speculation that weak global demand, stemming from masked economic woes, may also be playing a key role.‘ I don’t think the use of the term ‘speculation’ is appropriate here, because it seems overly obvious that China’s economic slowdown has played a major role in the oil price crash (and continues to do so). Even if there’s no ‘scientific’ proof, and even if the main media narrative remains OPEC overproduction and the inane meme of the cartel’s refusal to cut production, it certainly goes way beyond mere speculation.

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Economics

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

We’re at the Dawn of a “New Energy Age” / Economics / US Economy

By: Money_Morning

Dr. Kent Moors writes: Recently I received a very thoughtful comment from a subscriber.

In response to “The Truth About Iran’s Impact on Oil Prices,” Ramon had this to say about playing “the Iran card:”

Dr. Moors,

I find your updates very helpful in cutting through the chatter. After spending a large amount of time and resources trying to understand petroleum related energy, I developed this question.

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Economics

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

A Very Weak U.S. Economic Recovery / Economics / US Economy

By: EWI

For years, the government has been manipulating its unemployment statistics to line up with its claim that the economy has recovered strongly.

Jim Clifton of Gallup finally couldn't stand it anymore and wrote a terrific op-ed on the subject. Here is the meat of it:

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Economics

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Zero UK CPI Inflation Rate Prompts Deflation Danger Propaganda For Fresh Money Printing / Economics / Inflation

By: Nadeem_Walayat

Zero 0.0% CPI inflation not seen for 50 years as the continuation of the consequences of the collapse in crude oil prices that continue to stagnate below $50. And that despite falling unemployment wages are being suppressed as a continuing consequences of out of control immigration as workers continue to flood into the UK from across the economically depressed euro-zone. Whilst the mainstream press continues to warn of the dangers of outright deflation as CPI is expected to nudge below 0% and describe how this is bad for the economy as people put off consuming today in the anticipation of lower prices tomorrow. Meanwhile RPI, which is the closest thing to real inflation slid to 1% (1.1%) and is set against the real demand adjusted UK inflation rate of 1.5%.

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Economics

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Japan Short Term Gains And Long Term Disaster / Economics / Japan Economy

By: Raul_I_Meijer

About a month ago, Japan’s giant GPIF pension fund announced it had started doing in Q4 2014, what PM Abe had long asked it to: shift a large(r) portion of its investment portfolio from bonds to stocks. No more safe assets for the world’s largest pension fund, or a lot less at least, but risky ones. For Abe this promises the advantage of an economy that looks healthier than it actually is, while for the fund it means that the returns on its investments could be higher than if it stuck to safe assets. Not a word about the dangers, not a word about why pensions funds were, for about as long as they’ve been in existence, obliged by law to only hold AAA assets. This is from February 27:

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