Reclaiming Common Sense

Don't Have a Covfefe, Man (and Woman) - Focus on the Economy

This week was a crazy week for the economic data. We had a solid ADP payroll report. We had a weaker than expected and better than May 2016 Employment Situation Report. We had one of the strongest Weekly Unemployment Claims Reports since May 1971. This comes on the heels of last week's housing data which showed that the new home sales is still in recovery mode and that we are doing better than we have been since 2008 and that there is an existing home inventory shortage that is holding back existing home sales.  What we were discussing: Kathy Griffin and her tasteless posting (the one where she said that she and the photographer might have to "head" to Mexico after its release,) and "Covfefe." As Bart Simpson would say "Don't have a cow, man."

(May 30) The final week of the month is normally the time that his column starts crafting article regarding the upcoming Jobs Report (Employment Situation Report.) This past week it was painfully obvious that it was required to review Last May's Jobs data before tackling this May's data. Last May the April data was downwardly revised to allow the May number to be positive and keep "Private Sector Job Streak" alive. Last July the May Job Creation was turned into a May "Jobs" loss - nobody paid attention to the data. Last August the final revisions to the May data was released to reveal an even greater loss. These losses were minor in the scope of things. The jobs streak running up to the election - HUGE. This should have been a "Big League Story."  The article "Beware of the Jobs Data Revisions" details how sometime around the election the Current Employment Statistics data went through a phantom revision. I can't imagine why there wasn't a covfefe.

(May 31) Once the revisions article was written it was time to focus on the potential changes in data. Job growth was expected. Worker growth was expected. It was thought that the unemployment data should decline, based on the weekly continuing claims data we saw released for Mid May, and yet that it could increase because the Current Population Survey data is based on those who are unemployed and looking for work, not those who are unemployed and eligible for benefits. If the job creation was better than the number of people falling off the unemployment line then the participation rate could spike. This was the thinking behind "May Should Mean Job Creation and a Drop in Unemployment."  You want a covfefe? You Can't Handle a Covfefe.

(June 1) It appears that they "only people" who care about the weekly unemployment claims report data are the people who write stories on the weekly unemployment claims data. Some news commentators are seeing the data, the non-seasonally adjusted data, for what it is: Remarkable. They are commenting on it. This column has been commenting on the data for years - and expressed amazement in the low levels of the data for months, if not years. "Continuing Claims Lower than May 29, 1971?" That's good news - The Media wants a Covfefe.

(June 1) ADP, the payroll company, produces a jobs report prior to the official jobs report. This column has not placed much merit on the ADP report because it only releases seasonally adjusted data. How do they "know" the seasonal adjustments to use if the government does not publish their seasonal factors? That said, there was an "anti-covfefe" when ADP produced its report showing stronger than expected job growth.They reported job growth from April to May in eight out of ten private sectors and May to May growth in all ten sectors. Crickets. is this a "sinfefe?"

(June 2) The lead up to the release of the official jobs data at 8:30 AM was filled with cautious optimism. Hard data this, Soft data that. Green shoots. Profits. Boom. The seasonally adjusted data did not comport with the ADP data. Shocker. The article "May Jobs Report Better than May 2016" headline was a reference to the prior column on the revisions to the data. Commissioned salespeople know that you are only as good as your most recent month. If you can't beat last month's data then "at least" beat last year's same month data or last quarter's data, or whatever your metric of choice. We gained fewer non-seasonally adjusted full-time jobs than projected. We lost fewer part-time jobs than projected. Unemployment ticked higher, as was considered. The current employment statistics data recorded better growth than May 2008, 2009, 2011, and 2016. . This was a "Goldilocks Report" - Not a Covfefe - Not a Sinfefe. Move along - we need to focus on the  24 Reasons why Hillary Clinton lost the election.

The "only" longer running television show than the Simpsons is "Saturday Night Live." I wonder if they had a covfefe last night about "covfefe?" I'll have to find someone who still watches that show. Maybe Wendy's will bring back it's "Where's the Covfefe" commercial or Starbucks will have a new Venti Covfefe.

It's the Economy - It's Not a Covfefe