Tuesday, March 26, 2019

I'm looking for recession and not finding it.

These are stats from my latest MMT Trader report. Are these recessionary signs? Warren Mosler is bearish as hell.

Auto loans rising at the fastest pace in 8 months.
Residential real estate loans rising at fastest pace in 3 weeks.
Bank "residual" (capital) at record highs and up 3 weeks straight and up 6 of the last 7 weeks. (Implies growing bank earnings.)
Bank assets at record levels.
Gasoline demand at 6-month high.
Distillate demand at 3-month high.
Federal tax deposits have been rising since January and are on track to completely erase the y-o-y negative gap. Going positive.
Corporation taxes rising, too. They bottomed vs last year in early February.
Social Security (largest spending item) growing at fastest pace so far this fiscal year.
"Other Withdrawals" (military and defense) growing at fastest pace since early February and has accelerated 63% since then.
Unemployment benefits down and falling  y-o-y.
Food Stamps down y-o-y. 

These are all coincident or leading statistics. Most of these CREATE the forward conditions of the economy rather than reflect what the economy is already doing like much of the data cited by other economists.

I don't know...I just don't see it.


Tom Hickey said...

Paul McCulley on No Recession Ahead & Fed’s Tightening Done

Marian Ruccius said...

Is not the argument, as James Galbraith framed it in 2017: "“The Trump strategy amounts to little more than a firm determination to drive an old car, at high speed, into a wall.”

That should read high and accelerating speed (like Murphy's rocking chair as presented by Samuel Becket -- it oscillates faster and faster until it stops).


I guess the counter argument is a kind of bootstrapping one: that financialization and dice-rolling can trigger growth in the real economy, sufficient that it eventually feeds on itself displacing the financial dangers. I don't know which view is correct (if either).

Brian Romanchuk said...

I’m agnostic, but I think the real story being pushed is overseas weakness cutting into US growth.

David said...

I don't trust Paul McCulley on Wealth Track. Last time he pushed HEDJ just before it fell. A populist taking advantage of the stupid rich.

I'm watching the yield curve inversion to see if the rest of the investing world agree's with Paul's assessment.