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

Dow Theory says transportation and production of goods should move in tandem

Dow Theory says transportation and production of goods should move in tandem; what is its message now?  – by New Deal democrat Partly because mid year data is now being completed, and partly to re-examine my forecasts, I’ve been conducting a top-to-bottom re-check of my metrics. One thing that seems very important is that, despite […]

Has America Lost It’s Drive? – Pt. 4

In Part 3 of this series, I wondered a couple of things.  – With the vehicle/1000 people number in the range of 825 to 845 since 2004, is the market near saturation?– Is the January sales number of 14.2 SAAR (seasonally adjusted at annual rate) enough to maintain the vehicle/1000 people number? For the first […]

Is America Losing Its Drive? – Pt. 3 Vehicles per 1000 Persons

In private communication, Roger Chittum got me thinking about the vehicle component of gasoline consumption. I’m going focus on the gross vehicle numbers, and not get too deeply into the car/truck/SUV product mix detail.   Data is from the Department of Energy TRANSPORTATION ENERGY DATA BOOK: EDITION 30—2011.   (Warning:  414 page pdf.) According to Table 3-5 […]

Has America Lost its Drive? Part 2

I made a mistake in my original post.   Graph 4 in that post was based on the wrong data set.  As Roger Chittum pointed out in comments, that graph only covers a subset of total gasoline deliveries. This is the correct graph.  (Source.)  Thanks, Roger! Graph 1 Gasoline Supplied The fall off in gasoline delivery […]

Has America Lost its Drive?

Yesterday,  Karl Smith posted on Oil and the Structural Recession.  This seems to be one of Karl’s thinking-out-loud posts, with more questions than answers, some convoluted reasoning, and a conclusion that higher gasoline prices are in our future.  If I read him right, this will be due to a demand pull. He included this graph […]

Mysteries of Airline Management

NWA has joined the crowd of domestic airlines announcing (even more) capacity reductions, and their announcement contains this head-scratcher: As a result of the reduced capacity, Northwest is removing a combination of 14 B757s and Airbus narrowbody aircraft from the fleet. In addition, the DC-9 fleet will be reduced from 94 aircraft at the start […]

U.S. Energy Policy Could Be Worse (No, Really!)

by Tom Bozzo It could be China’s, for one. The FT reminds us that there are income and substitution effects: Even though GM does not officially sell Hummers in China, a booming grey market has developed. In Beijing alone, more than 15 car dealers are selling the tank-like vehicles to China’s army of new car-buyers. […]

Annals of Deregulation: Airlines ‘Stare Into the Abyss’

by Tom Bozzo What a difference a quarter makes, as the International Air Transport Association’s forecast of aggregate airline industry has taken a $6.8 billion or $10.6 billion swing to the red, depending on how optimistic you are (per the NYT): In March, the group forecast a profit of $4.5 billion… If the price of […]

The End of the Affair?

In cross-price elasticity of demand news, a story on the AP wire notes that, for the first time in ages, Toyota’s Camry and Corolla cars both outsold Ford’s full-size F-150 pickup truck. [*] It’s arguably worse even than that for Ford’s truck business, since neither the Corolla (52,826 units sold) nor the Camry (51,291) was […]

(Albufeira, Portugal) Congestion Pricing at Work?

Yesterday afternoon, a trio of fellow Conference on Postal and Delivery Economics attendees and I were marveling at the emptiness of the A2 motorway connecting the southern exburbs of Lisbon and the Algarve region. Certainly, there is not a whole lot of stuff en route, but you could say the same thing about a lot […]