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

Housing construction rebounds in February, as permits and starts are stable and rebounding

 – by New Deal democrat The Bonddad Blog Yesterday I wrote of how Fed rate hikes had not translated into a decline in the amount of housing under construction, and without that I did not see how a recession could occur. And in reaction to January’s housing construction report I concluded, “To signify a likely […]

Manufacturing and construction vs. the still-inverted yield curve

 – by New Deal democrat at the Bonddad Blog Prof. Menzie Chinn at Econbrowser makes the point that the yield curve is still inverted, and has not yet eclipsed the longest previous time between onset of such an inversion and a recession. So he believes the threat of recession is still on the table. And […]

Open Thread March 17 2024, January and February were rough months for inflation

Employ America’s current corecast is for a 2.86% YoY core PCE print for February. The six-month growth rate of core PCE, which was under 2% in December, should now be over 3% in February. Core services ex-housing inflation will be up on a year-on-year basis versus the previous meeting. Many FOMC members, especially among the moderates in […]

Industrial and manufacturing production improve for the month, but 16+ month fading trend continues

Originally Published at The Bonddad Blog Industrial production is an indicator that has faded somewhat in importance in the modern era since China’s accession to normal trading status in 2000. Before that, a downturn in production was an excellent coincident indicator for a general downturn in the economy. Since then there have been several downturns, […]

Good news and bad news Thursday: the bad news is real retail sales

 Bonddad Blog – by New Deal democrat This morning brought us both good and bad economic news. The good news was that initial jobless claims continue very low, at 209,000, down -1,000 from last week, while the four week average declined -500 to 208,000. Even better, after major downward revisions, continuing claims rose 17,000 to 1.811 […]

High school financial literacy?

I thought this might make a fun follow-up on my post on 8th grade algebra. Over at, Kevin Drum discusses a proposal to make a semester of financial literacy a high school graduation requirement. He feels that this would fill a much-needed gap: “There are no long-term tests of financial literacy that I can […]

King Canute economics comes to Massachusetts

According to legend, King Canute tried to order the tide not to come in. Needless to say, he failed, divine rights of kings nonwithstanding. Back when we lived in North Carolina, we visited the Outer Banks a few times. There were many expensive homes on the shoreline. These were often casualties of hurricanes that would […]

The most potent labor market indicator of all is still strongly positive

The Bonddad Blog  – by New Deal democrat On Monday I examined some series from last Friday’s Household survey in the jobs report, highlighting that they more frequently than not indicated a recession was near or underway. But I concluded by noting that this survey has historically been noisy, and I thought it would be […]

Probing the Impact of Private Equity in Healthcare

Not rewriting anything on this commentary or adding to it. Shahon Firth covers a lot of territory in his brief commentary. Probe Into Private Equity in Healthcare Launched, MedPage Today, Shannon Firth Government officials announced a joint investigation into the role of private equity and “corporate profiteering” in healthcare during an online workshop hosted by […]