Investors Are Piling Into Safe Havens on Coronavirus Fears
Gold mining stocks have broken out, with several hitting new 52-week highs this week. Gold royalty and streaming companies, including Franco-Nevada and Wheaton Precious Metals, also hit fresh 52-week highs.
Why Americans Want Socialism
I don’t believe they really want socialism. Few even understand what it is. What they want is change. They see little hope for improvement in their situations, no matter how hard they work and sacrifice. They don’t see anyone in authority trying to help them. So, when someone offers what sound like easy answers, they jump aboard.
Secular Trends in Residential Building Permits and Housing Starts
Over the long haul the two series offer a compelling study of trends in residential real estate. Here is an overlay of the two series since the 1959 inception of the Starts data and the Permits data, which began being tracked a year later.
Existing-Home Sales Declined in January
This morning's release of the January Existing-Home Sales fell to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.46 million units from the previous month's revised 5.53 million. The Investing.com consensus was for 5.43 million. The latest number represents a 1.3% decrease from the previous month and a 9.6% increase year-over-year.
New Residential Housing Starts Inch Down in January
The U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development have now published their findings for January new residential housing starts. The latest reading of 1.567M was above the Investing.com forecast of 1.425M and a decrease from the previous month's revised 1.626M.
New Residential Building Permits: 1.551M in January
The U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development have now published their findings for January new residential building permits. The latest reading of 1.551M was an increase from a revised 1.420M in December and above the Investing.com forecast of 1.450M.
NAHB Housing Market Index: "Builder Confidence Remains Solid in February"
The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) Housing Market Index (HMI) is a gauge of builder opinion on the relative level of current and future single-family home sales. It is a diffusion index, which means that a reading above 50 indicates a favorable outlook on home sales; below 50 indicates a negative outlook. The latest reading of 74 is down 1 from last month.
MacroView: The Next “Minsky Moment” Is Inevitable
In 2007, I was at a conference where Paul McCulley, who was with PIMCO at the time, was discussing the idea of a “Minsky Moment.” At that time, this idea fell on “deaf ears” as the markets, and economy, were in full swing. However, it wasn’t too long before the 2008 “Financial Crisis” brought the “Minsky Moment” thesis to the forefront.
Where to Get Income in a Low-Yield World
So far in 2020, the yield on the 10-year Treasury has averaged 0.01 percent when adjusted for inflation. Since the end of January, it’s actually dipped below 0 percent, trading as low as negative 0.14 percent on January 31.
Depending on the Undependable
Today we’ll extend the GDP discussion, looking at where these numbers originate, what they miss, and what the Fed in particular does with them. As you’ll see, we need better data… but it’s not at all clear Fed officials would use such data correctly, even if they had it.