Reclaiming Common Sense

(June 1) You can't say that I didn't tell you so. "Seriously Strong Full-time Job Gains This May"  broke down the May Jobs Report and the Current Employment Statistics data and the Current Population Survey data. The Non-seasonally adjusted CPS data revealed a huge level of full-time jobs created during May. 

(June 1) When Wages Increase and Workers Increase the economy can grow. "May Wages Up, May Workers Up" detailed how workers, non-seasonally adjusted, grew in every sector except the Information Technology sector, compared to last May. Every sector received a pay raise in hourly wages from May 2017 to May 2018. When you multiple wage growth by worker growth earnings are up over 5% compared to last year. 

(June 2) Week in review

​(June 4)  How is President Trump doing with regard to job creation and unemployment levels as compared with Former Presidents Reagan, Clinton, George W Bush and Obama? "Five Presidents at 16 Months" examines the data for full-time jobs, part-time jobs, and unemployed workers. President Trump has added more full-time jobs than any of his predecessors after sixteen months in office.

(June 4) 
Men lost over 10 million full-time jobs at the worst of the recession. Women lost 3 million full-time jobs. Women recovered from the Great Recession first. Men recovered, faded, recovered, faded, and are now surging in job creation."Men and Women with Record Levels of Full-time Jobs" reported a huge surge in men working full-time jobs during the month of May.  Note that men still work more full-time jobs than women and women work more part-time jobs than men.

(June 5)  
The surge in men working during May should not surprise anybody. All sectors added workers from April to May, including construction, mining/logging, and manufacturing. These have been male dominated workforces for decades. "May Sector Data: Three Sectors with Room to Grow" details how while all sectors have room to grow, three sectors have not recovered to pre-recession levels and two are not at peak worker levels. Two sectors had more workers after the Great Recession began than they have working right now. 

(June 7) 
Thursday was the release date of the weekly unemployment claims data. "Can Unemployment fall through September" addressed to seriously low first-time claims data, the ridiculously low continuing claims data, and touched on the percentage of workers covered by unemployment insurance. The IUR is at 1.0% Could it drop to zero? Could the headline U-3 unemployment rate drop to 2.8%? How low can these values fall? Will the mainstream media comment on the first-time claims data if the seasonally adjusted level drops below 200,000?

(June 8) 
This week the April JOLTS job opening and labor turnover survey for April was released. Remember that we have been discussing the May employment situation report. What did we learn by looking backwards? The job openings were at an all-time high. Unemployment was seriously low. There were more openings than unemployed workers. Does that matter? They are two different surveys with different sample sizes, measuring different things. "Job Openings Greater than Unemployed, So....." looks back at he multitude of articles written regarding the April Jobs Report and details how the sectors with the most job openings had the highest quit levels and the lowest wage levels, so... correlation or causation?  Are there job openings because employers are willing to pay enough to attract workers or are there high levels of quits because employers aren't willing to raise wages enough to keep their workers?

(June 9)Week in Review

​(June 11) The week started with two forecast articles. The real estate market is critical to the rest of the economy. New and existing home sales are retail multipliers and workforce multipliers. "May Real Estate Forecast: How High" projected surges in new construction starts, units under construction, completions, new home sales, and existing home sales. Inventory should rise for new and existing homes. Record sales prices are possible, if not probable.

(June 12) 
Real estate sales are retail multipliers. People need new electronics and appliances, new furniture and furnishings, new home and garden materials, and sometimes a new car to place in a new garage. "May Retail Can Jump 5% from last May" projected month to month growth in all retail sectors and May to May same month growth in all but two sectors.

(June 12) 
There were many people concerned that high gasoline prices would negatively impact the retail sales report data in multiple sectors. "May Inflation was Healthy" reported on the CPI data and relayed that there was inflation in energy. What has been ignored by most commentators is that there has been commodity deflation and service inflation. We are already seeing relief from the Memorial Day Weekend Gasoline Spikes here in Ohio.

(June 14) 
The Weekly unemployment claims data was released Thursday at 8:30 A.M.  Continuing claims fell to the lowest levels recorded, anytime of year, since 1988. "Weekly Unemployment Claims Seriously Low" also looked at the first-time unemployment claims data and the Insured Unemployment Rate (IUR.)

(June 14)
 Retail sales soared during May. Retail sales jumped from April to May this year. We are on-track for the best full year of retail sales. Retail sales were up May 2018 over the May 2017 levels for all but one sector. There were major revisions to the data. Month to month growth approached 9.00%. May to May growth exceeded 6%. The rolling year growth for the past 12 months almost broke the 5% rate, even after revisions to the preceding data periods. "May Retail Sales Set Another Record" goes into detail. The rolling year growth, even after revisions, was strong, the current year growth was stronger than the rolling year growth. The  May only growth was stronger than both of these measures. The month to month growth was stronger all three measures.

(June 16)Week in Review

(June 19) New home construction, and new home sales, provide a turbo charge to the economic engine of our country by stimulating construction jobs, financial service jobs, retail jobs, retail sales, and by reducing unemployment.  "May New Construction Best Since 2007" details how Starts are up, under construction data is up, and completions are up.

(June 20) 
You can't sell what isn't for sale.  "May Existing Home Sales Held Back by Lack of Inventory" dug into the existing home sales data and reported that there was a record high May Average Sales Price paid this past month. The total single family and condominium sales level was comparable to what we had during 2001

(June 21) 
Unemployment Claims, First-time Unemployment Claims and Continuing Unemployment Claims, are at generational lows with all-time high levels of employment. We are experiencing September Unemployment Claims levels, plural, during June that we normally only see during the final week fo September or the first week of October. This is "Unemployment Claims Craziness." What is crazy is that this is actively being ignored by the media. How low can these claims levels fall this Fall?

(June 23) Week in Review

(June 27) The New Home Sales data was released on Monday. This writer was still on the road. The New Home sales data was expected to produce a surge in units sold and a possible May Record Average Sales Price. "May New Home Sales Surged" goes into the details.

(June 28) Thursday was a day where two reports were released at 8:30 AM. The first report was the Weekly Unemployment Claims Report. The second report was the second revision to the First Quarter GDP Report. The article "Unemployment Claims Remain Historically Low" tells the story of how the continuing claims level continues to slide lower from week to week. 

(June 28) 
The Gross Domestic Product Revision garnered some attention because it was revised lower. Originally is was reported at 2.3%, then 2.0% last month, and now 2.0% this month. This column wrote an article on the Advance GDP value, an article stating that the personal consumption expenditures (PCE) (Retail Sales and Inflation) may not have been fully reflected in the Advance GDP number, and an article on the first revision to the data.  "GDP Data revised Lower. Why?" addresses some "problems" with the PCE revisions, the Gross Private Domestic Investment Revisions, and the Import/Export Revisions.

(June 29) 
This column writes a series of articles regarding the monthly jobs report data during the month that the report is released. One analysis that was missing this month was the Multiple Job Holder data. The number of "Multiple Job Workers Dropped during May." We know that we saw a surge in full-time jobs during May, and a drop in the number of part-time jobs and unemployed workers. Would that be reflected in the number of full-time/part-time job workers, part-time/part-time job workers, and a drop in the total number of people working multiple jobs? The answers are in the article.

​(June 30) Week in Review