Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Housing starts up?

Greetings good citizen,

I suppose today was another ‘goofy’ day in the markets, which opened higher but closed mixed with the Dow losing 10 points just before the close.

As usual, I copied tonight’s twin offerings well in advance of today’s closing bell…so they reflect conditions earlier in the trading day.

Let’s proceed to tonight’s first offering rather than get bogged down in a narrative, shall we?

Wall Street Opens Higher on Economic Reports
Published: December 16, 2009

Stocks opened higher Wednesday on Wall Street after the government said consumer prices rose in November, led by higher energy costs. [Not exactly ‘happy news’ and definitely not good news for the ‘consumer discretionary’ sector! So we can only wonder why the markets are headed ‘up’ instead of the opposite direction?]

A separate government report on housing showed construction rebounded last month, with all areas of country showing strength. [Considering the current housing ‘glut’ this is also hard to classify as ‘good news’.]

The data will likely be discussed by Federal Reserve policy makers who finish a two-day meeting on interest-rate policy Wednesday afternoon. Investors expect the Fed to hold rates steady even as the economy is showing signs of recovery. [Okay, now that it’s ‘after the fact’ it should come as a surprise to no one that investors got their ‘wish’ (although anyone wanting the Fed to raise rates right now is wishing death on the current economy.)]

The Labor Department said the Consumer Price Index, the government’s most closely watched inflation barometer, rose 0.4 percent in November, up from a 0.3 percent increase in October. The increase mostly reflected more expensive energy costs. [This isn’t the tune they were singing the other day, the other day this was being displayed as proof the imaginary ‘economic recovery’ was real!]

The Commerce Department said construction of new homes and apartments rose 8.9 percent in November to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 574,000 units. While the increase was slightly lower than economists had expected, the gain represents strength in all areas of the country. [Huh?]

At 10:15 a.m., the Dow Jones industrial average was up 45.95 points, or 10,497.95, a gain of 0.4 percent. The broader Standard & Poor’s 500-stock index was 0.6 percent higher, and the technology-heavy Nasdaq composite was up 0.7 percent.

Shares in Europe mostly rose Wednesday on a report that finance regulators will give lenders a decade or more to meet stricter capital rules. [You can understand why the financial sector would be pleased with this news…but it’s hard to imagine why anyone else would be pleased…]

In afternoon trading in Europe, the FTSE 100 in London was up 0.3 percent. The DAX in Frankfurt was up 1.4 percent, while the CAC-40 in Paris was 0.9 percent higher.

Bank shares rose in Germany and France in particular, after the Nikkei financial daily reported that global banking regulators plan to delay new capital adequacy requirements for at least 10 years. The proposed requirements were regarded as particularly onerous for Japanese banks but Japan’s Financial Services Agency said there was no agreement in place. [And the point behind imposing new regulations on Japanese banks was supposed to be?]

On the DAX, Commerzbank and Deutsche Bank were the biggest risers of the day, while on the CAC-40 BNP Paribas and Société Générale were prominent gainers.

However, the stock was kept in check ahead of what could potentially be a crucial statement from the Federal Reserve at the conclusion of its last rate-setting meeting of the year.

There are mounting expectations that the accompanying statement will be slightly more hawkish than before following a string of better than expected economic data, particularly related to jobs. [Relax, the ‘improved’ jobs outlook has been determined to be just as ‘imaginary’ as the pretend ‘economic recovery’ is! There is no ‘real’ evidence for either claim.]

“Markets seem to be in limbo ahead of the Fed’s announcement on rates later today,” said Anthony Grech, market analyst at IG Index. [The Fed announced and the Dow dropped…how’s that? Um, actually ALL indexes dropped but the Dow was the only one to reach negative territory before the markets closed for the day.]

“Today seems as though it might set the tone for the final weeks of 2009 -- the Fed’s announcement will be received in the context of a global economy that appears to be recovering, with traders well aware that low rates and cash lifelines cannot last forever,” Mr. Grech added.

Meanwhile, bond prices were mixed. The yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury note, which moves opposite its price, fell to 3.59 percent from 3.60 percent late Tuesday. The yield on the three-month T-bill, considered one of the safest investments, rose to 0.05 percent from 0.03 percent.

The dollar mostly fell against other major currencies, while gold prices rose.

Earlier, most markets in Asia fell, taking their lead from Wall Street Tuesday where investors fretted over the prospect of higher interest rates after a measure of U.S. inflation rose. [Wait a minute Slim! That was the same data that was being used as evidence of ‘consumer strength’…what are these fucktards trying to prove?]

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng shed 202.18, or 0.9 percent, to 21,611.74 and South Korea’s Kospi fell 0.1 percent to 1,664.24. China’s Shanghai index slipped 0.6 percent as new share sales absorbed cash and sated buying appetite.

Japan’s Nikkei 225 stock average bucked the trend as its financial sector was aided by the report in the Nikkei financial daily. It closed 93.93 points, or 0.9 percent, higher at 10,177.41 — its best finish since Oct. 27.

Sadly good citizen, global markets have been moving more or less in lockstep with the US markets…although I’m not convinced this is due solely to globalization…

So we arrive at tonight’s amazing second offering!

U.S. Reports Upturn in Home Building

Published: December 16, 2009

Builders broke ground on homes at a faster rate in November, the government said Wednesday, offering some hope that construction will continue a slow and steady revival that will spread through the broader economy. [There are over 15 million vacant properties across the US, how ignorant does this reporter think you are? Worse, who is STUPID enough to building new homes when there are so many pre-existing properties available that don’t carry the ‘never been owned’ premium that first time buyers can ill afford?]

Home construction increased to a seasonally adjusted annually rate of 574,000, the Commerce Department said, up 8.9 percent from October. Analysts attributed the increase to unexpectedly warm and dry weather in November after an unusually cold and wet October. [At this point in the game the weather isn’t a factor anymore…somebody’s being damn irresponsible with taxpayer cash! That’s what’s wrong with this picture.]

The number of building permits, an indicator of future construction that is not influenced by weather, rose 6 percent in November, reaching the highest level in a year after declining in October. [With such a huge ‘overhang’ of unsold houses some of this could be due to ‘impatience’ but that’s all it is. There aren’t enough ‘qualified buyers’ out there to put a floor back under the housing market…it simply isn’t there!]

“Builders are getting back on track to building homes again,” said Patrick Newport, United States economist for IHS Global Insight. “The inventory number is so low that unless they continue ramping up production they’re going to lose sales.” [Um, most of us already suspect that economists are only a half a step removed from a nitwit…Uh, that last statement is all of the evidence most of us need to be convinced we are indeed correct!]

Demand for homes has been propped up by a government tax credit for first-time home buyers, which expires in April. Economists expect demand for homes to grow at a modest rate through the spring.

Home construction has a powerful ricochet effect through the economy. Each new home is a sign of stupidity confidence that demand will be nonexistent robust in the months ahead, and after a home is sold, consumers typically stock up on refrigerators, appliances and Kryptonite locks furniture. Some economists estimate that construction will add 0.5 percent to gross domestic product in the fourth quarter. [And some economists think we will soon sign a free trade agreement with Mars!]

A separate report released Wednesday showed that inflation in the economy appears to be largely under control: consumer prices, excluding volatile food and energy costs, remained virtually unchanged in November. A decrease in apparel and household furnishing prices helped offset an increase in the price of airline tickets. [WTF!]

When food and energy were added, the Consumer Price Index rose 0.4 percent in November, largely because of a 6.4 percent jump in gasoline prices. On Tuesday, a report on producer prices showed unexpected gains in wholesale prices because of high energy costs, which economists expect to subside over the next several months. [Sadly these are the same economists that predict free trade with Mars…]

At 2:15 p.m., the Fed will announce its prognosis for the American economy. The Fed is expected to keep interest rates near zero, despite a weakening dollar, and many economists expect no change in its promise to keep rates low for an “extended period.” [Um, Not to alarm you but it appears these are, once again, the same economists who are convinced free trade with Mars is only weeks away…thought you should know.]

“Despite the pickup in inflation measures over the last few months (which the Fed is more than O.K. with), an outbreak of inflationary pressures throughout the economy remains less than likely in 2010,” Dan Greenhaus, chief economic strategist for Miller Tabak, wrote in a research note Wednesday.

A third report released Wednesday showed the current account deficit rising in the United States because of an increase in oil imports and industrial goods in the third quarter. The deficit increased to $108 billion in the third quarter, the Commerce Department said.

Um, does anyone else wonder why we are importing industrial goods? The natural question is why don’t we make these items ourselves…but that would be foolish, why make them when we can buy them for less than it costs to make them…but how did that happen?

The honest answer lies in crooked accounting, it will never be ‘cheaper’ to send raw materials half-way around the planet to be processed only to bring the finished product all the way back here, for ‘less money’ than it costs to produce the product right here…

This is the same flawed accounting that allows banks to carry bad assets on their balance sheets for more than their worth…these banks SHOULD BE bankrupt. But no! Only the borrowers had to surrender the ‘collateral’, the banks get to pretend the collateral is still worth something, even if they can’t find a ‘willing buyer’ (because they don’t exist!)

Stay with me now good citizen because this is important.

You NEED to recognize the fact that the system YOU RELY UPON for your CONTINUED SURVIVAL has become so corrupt that IT WILL SOON FAIL!

The estimates vary but there are between 15 and 18 million vacant/foreclosed housing units out there good citizen, DO YOU BELIEVE that the construction industry is (really) BUILDING NEW HOUSES?

Which may not be the best question but it’s another way of asking if you trust these chiseling weasels any farther than you can throw them?

It is in THEIR interest to convince YOU that everything is going to be FINE, even if it isn’t. The longer you do nothing, the more they will direct your attention away from their crimes.

Um, technically it is already ‘too late’ to prevent our old way of life from collapsing but that’s not as big a problem as it might seem. That path we used to be on had already led us where it ends. It is time to pick a new path if our species is to move forward.

It’s the end of the line for the self-interested, the only way forward is through placing the common good ahead of our personal needs.

No one can ‘advance’ alone.

Thanks for letting me inside your head,


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