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

February consumer inflation: the tug of war between gasoline and shelter continues

February consumer inflation: the tug of war between gasoline and shelter continues The Bonddad Blog  – by New Deal democrat Last month I described the trend in consumer inflation as an ongoing “tug of war” between energy and housing. Energy (mainly gasoline) peaked in June 2022 and made its low in June 2023, while housing, […]

Scenes from the February jobs report: yes, the Household Survey really was recessionary

Later this week we get a lot of interesting reports, including CPI tomorrow, retail sales on Thursday, and industrial production on Friday. In the meantime, let’s take a further look at some of the more noteworthy data from Friday’s employment report.

The economics of lighting

I grew up with the admonition that you always turn off the lights if you’re the last to leave the room. Or “close the lights,” as my grandma used to say. But home lighting technology has evolved considerably over the past couple of decades. 1. Does it save money to turn out the lights when […]

New Deal democrats Weekly Indicators March 4 – 8 2024

Weekly Indicators for March 4 – 8 at Seeking Alpha  – by New Deal democrat My “Weekly Indicators” post is up at Seeking Alpha. Generally speaking, there is a demarcation between consumer-oriented data, which is in the main positive, and manufacturing-oriented data, which is mainly weak or negative. As usual, clicking over and reading will bring […]

Biden Says Billionaires Pay an 8.2% Tax Rate. What Do Other Households Pay?

Let’s compare apples to apples here. Originally Published at Wealth Economics Uncle Joe has thrown out this 8.2% figure a couple of times, including in last night’s SOTU. Multiple folks have unpacked it; it’s not the standard “tax rate” measure. The usual “tax rate” is taxes divided by personal income, which doesn’t include accrued holding gains. The alternative […]

February jobs report: Household Survey is downright recessionary and the Establishment Survey is decidedly mixed

February jobs report: the Household Survey is downright recessionary, while the Establishment Survey is decidedly mixed  – by New Deal democrat In the past few months, my focus has been on whether jobs gains are most consistent with a “soft landing,” i.e., no further deterioration, or whether deceleration is ongoing; and more specifically:  Here’s my in […]

Initial jobless claims continue positive, suggesting good news for the tomorrow’s February unemployment rate as well

Initial jobless claims continue positive, suggesting good news for the tomorrow’s February unemployment rate as well  – by New Deal democrat The most important reason I cover initial jobless claims is because they are an “official” short leading indicator. They are also very good at forecasting the short-term trend in the unemployment rate in the […]

What One Economist Wants to Hear on Thursday’s SOTU Address

Up-Dated: Dean Baker, CEPR co-founder and Senior Economist, shares what he wants to hear from the President during Thursday’s #SOTU2024. Dean Baker and CEPR hopes Joe Biden reminds the country of his strong economic record while offering substantive policy pathways to bring more relief to the hard issues many face every day. He surmises what […]

Earned Labor Income Is a Small and Weak Lever. Unearned Property Income, and Wealth, Rule

Reversing extreme wealth concentration means going after property income. Originally Published at Wealth Economics Economists and pundits have been cheered of late by the labor-share increase during the first couple of years of the Covid era. And even, for a moment, lower-income workers were making progress vs higher-income folks. This is good news. In the […]

January JOLTS report shows more (relative) weakening, downward revisions to 2023

January JOLTS report: shows more (relative) weakening, downward revisions to 2023  – by New Deal democrat The JOLTS report for January showed only minor changes compared with December, all to the downside, but was somewhat overshadowed by mainly downward revisions to all of 2023. Starting with the monthly changes, job openings (blue in the graph below), […]