Succinct Summations of Week’s Events 8.29.14

Succinct Summations week ending August 29th


1. S&P 500 crossed 2,000 for the first time ever and took just 94 days to climb from 1,900 to 2k.
2. Pending home sales rose 3% m/o/m vs expectations of a 0.5% rise.
3. 2Q GDP rose 4.2% annualized vs expectations of a 4% rise.
4. Durable goods surged 22.6% the biggest increase and highest level since 1992 (due to an expected big increase in aircraft orders
5. Consumer confidence rose to 92.4, the highest level since October 2007.
6. Richmond manufacturing index came in at 12, the highest level since March 2011.
7. June durable goods were revised up to 2.7% from a previous reading of 0.7%.
8. Markit’s flash service sector activity came in at 58.5 v 58 expected.
9. Initial jobless claims fell by 1,000. The 4-week average is down 1,250 to 299,750.
10. Chicago PMI came in at 64.3 vs 56.5 expected.


1. New single-family home sales fell 2.4%, the slowest pace in four months.
2. Case-Shiller home prices fell 0.2%, the second straight month of declines.
3. New home sales came in at SAAR of 412k v the 430k expected.
4. Durable goods ex-transportation fell 0.8%
5. July personal income rose 0.2% vs expectations of a 0.3% rise.
6. Personal spending fell 0.1% vs expectations of a 0.2% rise.

Thanks, Batman!

Category: Markets

Conservatives Discover America’s Infrastructure Problems

Last night, I made a rare airport run. Our niece from Chicago is visiting for the long weekend, and rather than send a car, we fought through both U.S. Open and Mets traffic to pick her up at LaGuardia Airport. Regular readers know my views of U.S. airports in general and LaGuardia in particular. Despite…Read More

Category: Economy, Taxes and Policy

10 Friday AM Reads

Your three (or is it four?) day weekend is almost here! Don’t get bored on the beach, some expertly selected reads will keep your mind active while you tan: • In Pursuit of Past Performance (A Wealth of Common Sense) • Calling Gordon Gekko: This Is Japan (Bloomberg View) • Alaska Is a Petrol State,…Read More

Category: Financial Press

About David Tice’s 60% Crash Call . . .

Earlier this week, Prudent Bear fund founder David Tice warned of an imminent crash — as bad as 30-60% down on the S&P500. One small thing: This is pretty much the same call that Tice made in 2010 and 2012. Apparently, if you make the same crash call every 2 years, most of the media…Read More

Category: Markets, Really, really bad calls, Sentiment, Short Selling

Jaguar F-Type R Coupe

From the Wall Street Journal: Base price: $99,000 Price, as tested: $104,975 Powertrain: Front-mounted supercharged 5.0-liter, DOHC 32-valve, direct-injection V8 with variable cam phasing and active exhaust; eight-speed automatic transmission; rear-wheel drive with electronic limited-slip differential. Horsepower/torque: 550 hp at 6,500 rpm/502 pound-feet at 2,500-5,500 rpm Length/weight: 176.0 inches/3,638 pounds Wheelbase: 103.2 inches 0-60 mph: <4 seconds EPA fuel economy: 16/23/18 mpg, city/highway/combined…Read More

Category: Weekend

Conventional and Insidious Macroeconomic Balance-Sheet Crises

Category: Think Tank

Discuss: High Food Prices

High Food Prices Lead to Trade-offs Even in Upper-Income Household; Stores Shrink Meat Packages, Push Inexpensive Cuts; Downgrade to Chicken at the Weekend Grill   Source: WSJ  

Category: Food and Drink, Inflation

10 Thursday PM Reads

My afternoon train reads: • The Challenge (Reformed Broker) see also Your asset allocation is wrong (and so is everyone else’s.) (Bason Asset Management) • What’s The Matter With France? (Krugman) • Europe’s Banks to Offload $770 Billion of Non-Core Property Assets (World Property Channel) see also Europe Bank Cleanup Driving $1.72 Trillion of Asset…Read More

Category: Markets

Sitting Is Killing You


Category: Markets

Warren Buffett’s Attackers Are Hypocritical

The jury is out as to how much of the Burger King-Tim Horton merger is driven by the desire for tax savings. So far, the range seems to be modestly to not very much. The Los Angeles Times noted “Burger King’s overall effective tax rate in 2013 was 27.5%, according to its annual report. Tim…Read More

Category: Corporate Management, Legal, Taxes and Policy