Morning Report: GDP disappoints 7/29/16

Vital Statistics:

Last Change
S&P Futures 2160.5 -4.0
Eurostoxx Index 340.2 1.0
Oil (WTI) 40.9 -0.2
US dollar index 86.8 -0.9
10 Year Govt Bond Yield 1.49%
Current Coupon Fannie Mae TBA 103.3
Current Coupon Ginnie Mae TBA 104.2
30 Year Fixed Rate Mortgage 3.51

Stocks are lower this morning after the advance estimate for 2Q GDP came in well below expectations. Bonds and MBS are up.

The advance estimate for second quarter GDP came in at +1.2%, which was well below the 2.5% survey estimate. The first quarter number was revised downward to 0.8%. Stronger consumer spending offset weak business investment. Consumer spending rose 4.2% while business investment fell 2.2%. The core personal consumption expenditures index rose at 1.7% ex food and energy, which is still below the Fed’s target rate. The economy has definitely taken a turn slower over the past 3 quarters.

GDP bar chart

The employment cost index rose 0.6% in the second quarter, according to the BLS. Compensation costs were up 2.3% YOY as salaries rose 2.4% and benefit costs rose 2%. Comp costs had been running at a 2% clip for the past year, so this number is actually a pretty big jump.

The homeownership rate fell to a 50 year low last quarter, hitting 62.9% which was last seen in the mid 60s. We don’t have data before that. Some of the increase in the homeownership rate was due to social engineering that began with the Clinton Administration, so maybe the heights were somewhat artificial, however it probably does have room to rebound, and that represents pent-up demand. I keep harping on this, but the big reason why GDP is so weak is because housing construction is still well below normalcy. Increasing housing construction would help with the affordability issue, which has been a driver of the decline as well as putting people to work. Unfortunately builders don’t have the confidence to break out of their 1.1 million – 1.2 million start range we have been stuck in for the last year.

homeownership rate NAD

Consumer sentiment slipped in June, according to the University of Michigan.

58 Responses

  1. Are you smarter than a 1912 6th grader?

    http://vaviper.blogspot.com/2013/07/check-out-this-test-for-eighth-graders.html

    BTW, Number 7 on the math section is now outdated. The answer is indeterminate under Obama administration policies.

    Like

    • I think #6 depends on a 360 day year, 30 day month convention, which was still typical when I was in 8th grade. The Truth-in-Lending laws modified that convention’s use as well.

      Like

  2. As I am still on John McCain’s mailing list, I replied today that I would send him $250 for his Senate campaign within two days after he renounces Putin’s tool, Trump.

    Like

  3. How 7 YOs process radio news stories.

    We drove back from El Paso yesterday – a ten hour drive with pit stops for twins. NPR was background noise on XM for maybe 4 hours.

    As we approached Austin, Rosanne texted Jen to ask her whether to take the girls directly to the Daisy [little Girl Scouts] pool party or go home. Jen texted back for R to tell the girls that she would pick them up at home and take them to the pool party.

    The twins were in back on the IPad they had liberated from Jen for the road trip. When the message came through the girls saw it on the IPad and ‘Becca said “Nonnie, you don’t have to tell us.” They giggled. Then Julia said “we read Mommy’s text like we were Russia reading Hillary Clinton’s email.”

    Liked by 1 person

    • Not having watched the Ds while in El Paso all week, I got snippets on the internet and XM radio. First, is Jennifer Rubin correct that for the first time in a very long time the Ds pushed defense and national security?

      https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/right-turn/wp/2016/07/29/its-wonderful-what-trump-has-done-for-the-party-the-democratic-party/

      Second, was this otherwise the Ds promising free stuff paid for by “the 1%”?

      Finally, will the Johnson-Weld ticket get a bounce?

      Like

      • Flags aside, the Dems were presenting as the “American Exceptionalism” party. Enough to make your head hurt. They’re working at stealing optimism away from the Republicans, which is very easy because they just left it out on the street with the keys in the ignition this year. On the whole, the entire media manifestation around the DNC convention, from the convention to memes to how the managed news coverage has been spot on. An alien with no dog in the fight could be forgiven for concluding that America only has one professional political party, and that’s the Democrats. Leave policy out of it, and I can’t imagine anyone going for another other brand than the Democrats. If the “grass roots” weren’t so unprofessional and sloppy, the Democrats would be unstoppable.

        Liked by 1 person

    • “They giggled. Then Julia said “we read Mommy’s text like we were Russia reading Hillary Clinton’s email.””

      A little later, Donald Trump said: “I hope they share all those emails, so we find out what Mommy was really up to!”

      Like

  4. Gary Johnson is incoherent on religious liberty. It’s almost as if he has never even thought about the issue at all.

    http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/article/2598088

    He says that the federal government should prevent discrimination “in all cases”. But he goes on to defend his pro-choice politics with the obvious falsehood “I really do believe in people being able to make choices.”

    What has this world come to when even the Libertarian candidate can’t bring himself to be intellectually coherent?

    Like

    • But he goes on to defend his pro-choice politics with the obvious falsehood “I really do believe in people being able to make choices.”

      You do not mean that he is lying when he says he believes pregnant women should have personal free choice to abort, of course.

      Like

      • Mark:

        You do not mean that he is lying when he says he believes pregnant women should have personal free choice to abort, of course.

        Clearly not. But he is lying when he defends his position on abortion by saying as a general matter that, because he is not a “social conservative, he “really does” believe in people being able to make choices. Obviously he does not believe in, for example, religious people being able to choose whether or not to involve themselves in gay weddings. So it is clear that he “really does” believe in people being able to make some choices, but not others that he wouldn’t make himself.

        Johnson is no libertarian.

        Like

    • “He says that the federal government should prevent discrimination “in all cases”.”

      I can’t help but think that’s due to the 3rd rail nature of expressing a libertarian consistency about discrimination, ala what Rand Paul said about the civil rights act and suggesting the government shouldn’t have intervened in the case of discriminating against serving blacks or separate lunch counters, saying the private market would take care of it. That position is political suicide, so it’s a case of choosing not to fight that battle, despite the incoherence of “I’m a libertarian, the government should tell you who you have to do business with”.

      Like

      • KW:

        That position is political suicide, so it’s a case of choosing not to fight that battle, despite the incoherence of “I’m a libertarian, the government should tell you who you have to do business with”.

        One of the benefits of being a third party candidate with no chance of winning is that you are free from having to pander for votes, and can actually tell the truth about things. If Johnson is not willing to do that, then what’s the point of his bothering to run?

        Like

  5. I admit to really hating the R convention which we unfortunately watched a bit too much of and I haven’t really watched much of the D convention but I read this just now and I’m intrigued and will watch this speech sometime tonight.

    http://www.slate.com/blogs/the_slatest/2016/07/28/obama_s_dnc_speech_praised_by_conservatives.html

    Read to the end as there are caveats about these comments which put them back into perspective.

    I haven’t had much time here lately to participate in the political process so I may leave the voting up to others this year. It’s pretty discouraging anyway.

    Walter has been ill since December and we are only just now getting to the bottom of things and are still awaiting some of the results from new tests now that they’ve narrowed things down a bit. He’s feeling better as they try different remedies so I’m a little encouraged by that.

    Still have daughter #2’s wedding in Sept and still running the business. I hired a young man to help me this summer as it was getting to be too much work for me and so that’s definitely helped. We’re trying to hang on until 2021 when our ownership rights expire on our main product but have been thinking more and more about retirement.

    Still going to the gym 4 morning a week and lifting weights, still swimming and now I’ve taken up running, which I can’t even believe. Doing my first 5K (grass skirt and all) on Aug 21st at the beach.

    Hope you’re all enjoying your summer and staying healthy and strong! We need to be strong to survive this year’s politics I think. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lulu, I really am sorry to hear about Walter’s long illness. This sort of lingering-we-don’t-know-what-it-is thing seems to be happening to some of my friends here and it is so damned frustrating.

      Don’t hurt yourself running. I know you know how to run, and how to take care of yourself, but swimming is so great because of its overall body conditioning combined with low impact. So stay on the cautious side, please.

      Meanwhile, I have decided that Trump’s view that supporting NATO is optional, coupled with his folks deleting any reference to Crimea in the platform, coupled with his son’s suggestion that a “disproportionate” number of their investors are Russian, means there is some fire behind the smoke and whether wittingly or not, the loudmouthed con artist is Putin’s stooge.

      The Ds will connect these dots, and any others that DJT tweets, of course.

      I will never be convinced that HRC should be POTUS, and am voting L again. But I told Scott that if TX were actually close, I might vote for her to hasten the time when TX has two parties again. I gave him examples of the shortcomings of one party states, but I think that while he might agree in principle, he would not want one of the parties to be D. [fair, Scott?]

      Like

      • Mark:

        I gave him examples of the shortcomings of one party states, but I think that while he might agree in principle, he would not want one of the parties to be D. [fair, Scott?]

        Well, to be honest the more local the jurisdiction, the less objectionable I find Democrats to be. I’d have no (well, maybe “few” would be more accurate) problems with a healthy Democratic Party as a counterweight to Republicans at the municipal or maybe even the state level, in order to help prevent corruption and incompetence. But I still don’t think it makes sense to elect D’s at the federal level as a method of resurrecting the local D party since D’s at the federal level, pretty much as a matter of course, attempt to eliminate local power and vest it in themselves at the federal level.

        Like

      • Sorry it took me so long to get back to you. Thanks for the kind words re Walter. It’s difficult but we’re working our way through things. We should be closer to a real diagnosis and prognosis in another month or so.

        I’m a cautious runner, don’t worry. I couldn’t swim from Dec of last year until about June this year because of a shoulder injury, which is why I took up running and discovered I actually enjoyed it. My real love now though is weight lifting……LOL

        I’m really dreading a vote this year. I can’t stand any of the candidates really although I would vote for GJ regardless of Scott’s opinion on the matter. I suppose if CA were really tight I would vote for Hillary or I may just skip the entire process, something I’ve never done before. Ugggghhhh.

        Interesting what you’re suggesting regarding Trump. I knew he was a stooge but I didn’t realize whose!!! LOL

        Like

        • lms:

          I can’t stand any of the candidates really although I would vote for GJ regardless of Scott’s opinion on the matter.

          As a matter or personal choice, I’d rather have GJ than DT or HRC too. I just don’t think that GJ is a libertarian in any real sense, and his advocacy of legal abortion is not based on the principle he claims it is, as evidence by his complete rejection of the principle in other contexts.

          BTW, since my vote won’t matter in CT, I might vote for GJ too. Then I can claim no responsibility for the resulting disaster regardless of whether DT or HRC wins. If I lived in a swing state, I would have a real Sophie’s choice.

          Like

        • The problem with GJ is I’m pretty sure he hasn’t quit smoking dope, nor do I think he would as President. I’ve smoked plenty of dope, I think it’s an underutilized anxiolytic frankly, I just don’t want a high POTUS.

          At least while it’s not a “protected class.” If that changes, so will my opinion.

          Also, he ain’t no Harry Brown.

          Like

        • McWing:

          At least while it’s not a “protected class.” If that changes, so will my opinion.

          LOL

          Like

        • He may not be a true Libertarian but I believe he has more integrity that the other two combined. I’m not super familiar with him but the few times I’ve heard him speak I liked him.

          I don’t think CA will be a swing state in this election either, although Trump has picked up more support than I bargained for.

          I may just throw caution to the wind and for for GJ or an I if there is one and let the chips fall. I suppose that’s better than not voting at all.

          Like

        • “The problem with GJ is I’m pretty sure he hasn’t quit smoking dope, nor do I think he would as President.”

          He actually addressed that. He says he’s giving up since the Libertarian convention for the duration of the campaign, and if he wins for his Presidency.

          He said that people probably wouldn’t want a drunk president either, but he recognizes that it’s not something that he can partake in while he’s effectively in a 24 hour a day job.

          Like

    • Sorry to hear about Walter. Hope things have improved.

      Like

      • Thanks jnc. We’re lucky we have each other. He took such great care of me that year I was so sick and so now it’s my turn to return the favor.

        Like

  6. Worth a read:

    “Bad Moon Rising
    Here we are in the desert of moderate liberalism. The storm has hit, and nobody was prepared.

    Laurie Penny”

    View story at Medium.com

    Like

  7. Ummm….WTF?

    Like

    • She’s kind of creepy to me!

      Like

      • lms:

        She’s kind of creepy to me!

        Weird, wasn’t it? I don’t know what was going on, but she looked briefly possessed.

        Like

        • Very weird. It’s such a bummer to me because it would be so awesome to have a woman for President in my lifetime, but not her. My daughters and most of their friends are voting for her and I think my son and family are voting for Trump…………ugggghhhh, I can’t talk politics with my family any more!

          Like

        • lms:

          t’s such a bummer to me because it would be so awesome to have a woman for President in my lifetime, but not her.

          To me it would be awesome to have a person with orange skin for President. But not Trump.

          The fact that either Hillary or Trump will actually win this election is enough to rattle even the most devout’s faith in cosmic justice. I can barely even bring myself to think about how horrible the next 4 years is going to be.

          Like

        • Orange skin, gay, yellow skin, Jewish, female, ugly, anyone, rather than either one of these two. I’m pretty rattled too to be honest.

          I don’t really completely understand how we got here though. That’s what really scares me. Just the same way I don’t understand how Reality TV became so popular. We’ve definitely dumbed down America.

          Like

        • lms:

          I don’t really completely understand how we got here though.

          I blame global warming.

          Like

        • I doubt that……….LOL

          Like

        • I’m totally demoralized. It is quite depressing to come to the realization that one’s primary political value is shared by so few people, even among those who ostensibly share some measure of an ideology.

          Like

        • It’s been a hard lesson for capital “C” Conservatives.

          Like

        • McWing:

          It’s been a hard lesson for capital “C” Conservatives.

          Indeed it has.

          Like

        • Maybe it’s a case of “It’s always darkest before the dawn”?

          I really don’t know what to think. I think you blame liberals primarily but I think both Capital L liberals and Capital C conservatives have drifted away from principles over the years. I’m much more liberal than conservative as you all know but I can’t relate to the D party of today.

          Progressives don’t really make me all warm and fuzzy either though. A little too hands off for me, but at least I understand where they’re coming from.

          But there’s a reason I voted for Perot, Anderson and “none of the above” all those years.

          Like

        • lms:

          Maybe it’s a case of “It’s always darkest before the dawn”?

          More like “It’s always darkest right before you go into the light…which means you are dead”.

          Like

        • It can always get worse. This is the continuation of a long downward spiral.

          Get ready for Kayne 2020.

          Like

        • Scott

          Well maybe I won’t have to worry too much then, being 66 and all. Although I did a couple of those tests to find out how long I’ll live and my biological age. According to them I’m somewhere between 37 and 52 and will live to either 97 or 114….uggghhh.

          I guess we have to hit rock bottom and then someone, a personality who can’t be ignored, with integrity oozing out their butt will save us from ourselves? I suppose it’s possible.

          Like

        • jnc, I was afraid she was going to pick Elizabeth Warren.

          Liked by 1 person

  8. “Like we’ve never seen before.”?

    http://www.politico.com/story/2016/07/john-allen-donald-trump-226479

    Civil war comes to mind.

    Also, wouldn’t General Allen argue we’ve past the Rubicon under Bush? I did and do support the use of torture against our enemies but if he was so butthurt about it why didn’t he resign?

    Like

  9. Presumably she’ll be sued and forced to serve them under Civil Rights Laws:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2016/08/02/us/think-ar-15s-are-ok-this-restaurant-owner-doesnt-want-your-business.html

    Like

    • jnc:

      From the link:

      Many said she was behaving no differently from a baker who would not make a cake for a same-sex wedding, but she rejected that analogy.

      “Gun owners are not a protected class,” she said.

      {shakes head}

      Like

      • This was even better:

        “Let me be clear, this is not a political issue. This is a human rights issue.”

        Where “Let me be clear” is the tell for the following statement being a lie.

        Like

  10. Trump sure did a good job of preventing this from becoming news over the weekend:

    http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2016/08/why-hillary-clinton-keeps-lying/493841/

    Like

    • “she relies on excessively technical and legalistic answers to explain her actions”

      sigh

      Like

    • JNC, I don’t remember a bigger liar than HRC since RMN. Oh, wait, she is running against an even bigger liar.

      Is this the worst choice ever, or what?

      I’ll say it again, if Johnson and Weld could get in the debates they would have at least as much leverage as Perot did in ’92. I voted for Perot out of general dissatisfaction with how the others were treating the deficit issue. That was small change compared to this election. I believe Trump is Putin’s [probably unwitting] lapdog and a con artist who has bilked millions from others, who knows less about politics or government than any one of us here, and who has no core political beliefs. I believe HRC knows more about poitics and governing than anyone of us here, but is a serial liar and acts the entitled one all the way to her dismissal of common concern for security.

      I may not watch or listen to this any more as I am becoming set solid in my third party vote, for the umpteenth time in my life.

      Thus I won’t have much to offer here [not that my contributions ever were much to offer].

      Like

      • Mark:

        Is this the worst choice ever, or what?

        Certainly in my lifetime.

        Like

        • Mine too, although I’ve only voted once for a D, as you know I voted for Obama, so I’m never very satisfied with the choices. If I vote I’ll likely do the same as Mark and vote I or L. I toy with voting for Hillary in a worst case scenario but I doubt I could actually do it.

          Like

        • Hi Lms,

          For some reason I missed your post the other day, I hope Walter feels better and gets back to normal ASAP!

          Like

        • Thanks McWing…………hope you’re doing well!

          Like

      • who knows less about politics or government than any one of us here,

        I’m not voting for him but I find that to be a positive, not negative. Good knowledge of politics and governing have led us to an unpayable debt and an unavoidable crisis.

        Like

Be kind, show respect, and all will be right with the world.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: