Reclaiming Common Sense

Every month this column produces multiple articles on the economy, including multiple articles on the jobs report, a number of articles on housing, plus columns on the Consumer Price Index and the Monthly and Annual Retail Trade Survey (MARTS) data. Data is king. The data that is recorded is the non-seasonally adjusted data. The data that is reported is the seasonally adjusted data. This column lives, breathes, writes the non-seasonally adjusted data. Some articles resonate with you - some, not so much.

(July 8) The jobs report can be examined a number of ways. "Five Presidents at Five Months" examines the Current Population Survey Jobs Statistics of Presidents Reagan, Clinton, Bush "43," Obama, and Trump. President Trump has overseen the addition of full-time jobs and the trimming of unemployed workers and part-time jobs. President Obama oversaw the expansion of unemployed workers, the expansion of part-time jobs, and the trimming of full-time jobs.

(July 1) Thankfully, the readers of this column enjoy the "Top Ten" articles and the "Week in Review Columns." "The Top Ten Articles of June 2017" column was the second most popular article.The interesting thing is that an article of Medicare and Medicaid that was originally reported during April 2014 and An Article on the ACA from April of 2016 were among the top ten of June 2017.

(July 8) Saturdays are almost always week in review days.  The "July 8th week in review" column focused on jobs. It is the economy, after all.

(July 27) Real estate is critical to the economy. New home construction begets jobs and new home sales. Existing home sales beget retail sales and jobs. "New Home  Sales Strengthening" details how the average sales price is climbing, as are the number of units sold. Under the Obama administration the headlines would have been "New Homes Up for the Third Straight June" or HIghest Level of June New Home sales since June 2007."  Instead, this report received a giant "Meh."

(July 11) The Jobs Report is the spark for multiple "Jobs" articles. The June Jobs Report led to the authoring of "June Worker Growth in 9 of 11 Sectors." The only two sectors that lost jobs this June were "Education and Health Services" and "Government."

(July 24) Not only did we have solid June New Home Sales, we also had "Solid June Existing Home Sales." We had a record June Average Sales Price. We saw over 600,000 units sold. We only saw more June existing homes sold during 2004, 2005, and 2006, at the peak of the housing boom.

(July 10) The untold story of this slow as molasses recovery has been the surge in multiple job workers. It is believed that the Affordable Care Act has "forced" employers to hire more workers to work part-time jobs, either seasonal or permanent, in order to avoid the 50 Full-time Equivalent workers rule or the 30 hour worker rule.  "Record June Level of Multiple Part-time Job Workers" goes into detail regarding the level of people working two or more jobs, whether they be two part-time jobs, two full-time jobs or a Part-time Job and a Full-time Job."

(July 7) The June Jobs Report was shrugged off as being "okay."  What was missed was the huge spike in Full-time Jobs. The data reported in the press is seasonally adjusted "workers." The focus of "June Full-time Jobs Jump" detailed how the Current Employment Statistics (CES) growth was comparable to 2004 and 2006, how if they used the seasonal factor used June of 2015 that the official number reported could have been 198,000 instead of 187,000, how the Current Population Statistics data revealed a surge of over 1.4 million non-seasonally adjusted (NSA) Full-time Jobs, a drop of over 700,000 part-time jobs and a typical June Jump in unemployed workers.

(July 11) The buzz for the past few years have been the myth of the "gasoline Stimulus" and the coming, or present, Retail Ice Age. "Retail Ice Age or Retail Winter" detailed how we saw a near record level of June Retail Workers.

(July 24) This column believes in managed expectations. You hear he newscasters say "met expectations," "beat expectations," or "missed expectations" with regard to the jobs report, profits, earnings, home sales, or the GDP.  Upon whose expectations were these based? Not mine. The article "June Real Estate Forecast" projected the possibilities for the New Home Sales data and the Existing Home Sales data for June. It was projected that the Average Sales Price for existing homes could punch through the $300,000 level and that we could see over 600,000 units sold.The advance numbers were $303,900 and 601,000 units. The same column called for sales of 55,000 to 60,000 units and and average sales price of over $400,000, or at least exceeding May's Average Sales Price.. The results were 55,000 units  and a record June average Sales price of $379,500, down slightly from the May downward revisions.

This week has been a busy week. One of the lessons learned was that death reminds the living to get on with life. A furry feline friend passed away Sunday night. He had been through many moves and two house fires. He was roughly 17 years old. He was everybody's friend and will be missed by his "younger brother from a different mother." He and his sister are the impetus for a book that I have started writing. Stray cats, and feral cats, can be the best pets you ever own. They also help boost the economy through retail sales and medical visits. Adopt a cat, or a dog, this weekend from your local PetSmart or HUmane Society.

It's the economy.