Relevant and even prescient commentary on news, politics and the economy.

House prices – especially for existing homes – compared with wages remain near or at all-time highs, so existing homes make up less of the market

 – by New Deal democrat One item I meant to address with this week’s existing and new home sales data was the relative difference in price in the two, and the effect on the relative share of the market.  I am following up now because yesterday Kevin Drum put up a post yesterday in which […]

How can getting food into Gaza be up for debate?

From the NYT: I am not sure what the claim is here.  If the idea is that Hamas will get political credit if people do not starve, this is a totally unacceptable reason to withhold food.  Maybe the worry is that Hamas will gain political leverage by monopolizing the distribution of food aid and distributing […]

High Interest Rates Restricting Housing

An abbreviated portion of Preston Mui’s “Where High Rates are Restricting Investment,” Employ America. This portion of his economic commentary discusses housing and in particular Multifamily. Preston Mui: The Federal Reserve has held rates at the current level for nearly a year. The majority of the committee appears confident that monetary policy is currently restrictive. […]

FHFA and Case Shiller repeat sales indexes show YoY price growth has peaked; slow deceleration in shelter CPI should continue

 – by New Deal democrat This week’s data focuses on house prices and new home sales, and the more important personal income and spending report on Friday. In the housing data I am looking at any movement towards rebalancing between new and existing home sales. To recapitulate, the big increase in mortgage rates has locked […]

The COVID vaccines are really, really safe

I got my first COVID shot in August 2020 as part of the Moderna Phase III trial. Since then, I’ve had four additional jabs. Today, I’ll get another booster with the latest Moderna vaccine. I’m looking forward to it. I did contract COVID last November during a trip to Colorado. I tested positive for a […]

did Thomas Ram a Ramrod into his Opinion

“But then, in 2022“, the Justice Clarence Thomas-authored Bruen decision suggested all gun regulations had to line up with the understanding of firearms the founders had when they wrote the Constitution. “ It seems to me that if Bruen is taken very literally, it implies that the 2nd amendment only applies to muzzle loading firearms: muskets, rifles, […]

AI for the win!

The last decade has seen many initiatives toward clean, green, and low-carbon energy, as well as a global shift toward electric vehicles and automation. Many of these initiatives were enabled rare earth magnets, which is why rare earth magnets are heavily used now and will continue to be used in the future. When my dad […]

Housing permits and starts the lowest since 2020, units under construction also decline further, but no yellow caution flag yet

 – by New Deal democrat I’ve written repeatedly in the past few months that I am paying especial attention to the manufacturing and construction sectors for signs of weakness now that the supply chain tailwind for the economy has ended. At the beginning of this month, one show appeared to have dropped, as the ISM […]

Good news on production is overshadowed by the yellow caution flag of flagging real retail sales

 – by New Deal democrat There was good news and not so good news in this morning’s two important data releases.  I’ll start with the good news. Both total industrial production and its manufacturing component increased a sharp 0.9% in May. Even after downward revisions of -0.4% in March and -0.3% in April, both were […]

Immigration and the housing market freeze are making the “last mile” of disinflation harder, not the Phillips Curve

If you look at Part 1 and Part 2 of The Demographic Outlook: 2024 to 2054 CBO projections. The estimation of Net Immigration varies anywhere from 2.7 to 3.3 million to the US in 2024. In Part 1, of CBO’s current estimates, net immigration is larger than the agency estimated last year, by 0.7 million people […]