Global House Price Index

Home sales, at least in the U.S., seem to be rising. Existing home sales in June increased to 5.04 million annualized. That number may be affected by the weather, as June sales most likely come from contracts signed after the depths of winter.

To find out if this is a global improvement, we can take a look at the International Monetary Fund’s Global House Price Index. Its data and lovely infographics give us a few interesting things to digest. (You can also use the BIS data or OECD statistics).

The first chart shows the annual percentage change in housing prices. The U.S. is 10th, and housing prices in the country are still far below (35 percent, or so) their 2006 peak.

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Category: Data Analysis, Digital Media, Real Estate

10 Tuesday AM Reads

My morning afternoon train reads (continues here): • The Pendulum Takes A Swing Towards Value Stocks (NY Times) • Biggie Smalls (Reformed Broker) see also Small-cap stocks run into big doubts (WSJ) • Gary Shilling:  The Boom Is Coming, and Sooner Than You Think (BV) • What Millennials Want That Their Boomer Parents Hate (Time)…Read More

Category: Financial Press

Apple vs. Google: The Battle For Your Car

Ever wish the apps on your phone would seamlessly link with your car? You don’t have to wait much longer. Both Apple and Google have announced programs to integrate their mobile operating systems into your dashboard. Apple Carplay and Google Android Auto are scheduled to roll out later this year. Bloomberg Businessweek’s Sam Grobart takes a look at what that means for the consumer.


Source: Bloomberg, July 22 2014

Category: Technology, Video

Inflation Was Much Higher Pre-Crisis than Post-Crisis

click for ginormous chart Source: FRED     This morning’s column on Inflation truthers led to some emailers insisting inflation numbers are much higher post crisis than pre. Sorry, but the data says that is simply not true. Play with the attached FRED XL spread sheets all you want, the data is hard to argue…Read More

Category: Data Analysis, Inflation, Mathematics

10 Monday PM Reads

My afternoon train reads: • This is one of the biggest bull markets of my career, and these charts show it’s not over (Business Insider) • No Bias (Irrelevant Investor) see also When Beliefs and Facts Collide (NY Times) • Dark Pool Disfavor Above 50% in Poll Amid High-Frequency Fallout (Bloomberg) • Investors should check…Read More

Category: Financial Press

Does Increased M&A = Potential Market Top ?

FT: When investors are complacent, stupid deals happen Source: FT     Last week, I pointed out some statistical errors in a chart suggesting that Rupert Murdoch’s bid for Time Warner was a sign of the market’s top. The chart had enough omissions to render it useless. Today, I want to show you a (slightly)…Read More

Category: M&A, Markets, Sentiment

NSA Communication Breakdown

Source: Washington Post

Category: Really, really bad calls

10 Monday AM Reads

My Monday morning train reads (continues here): • Who Routinely Trounces the Stock Market? Try 2 Out of 2,862 Funds (NY Times) That’s 0.07% • Quite Contrary (Barron’s) see also Don’t Pay Up for Selloff Protection (Barron’s) • Three Reasons This Is a Good Time to Be an Investor (WSJ) • GMO’s Jeremy Grantham Doesn’t…Read More

Category: Financial Press

Confessions of an Inflation Truther

There is a group of folks who believe that inflation is much higher than the numbers in the official reports. Paul Krugman calls them “inflation truthers.” In the 2000s, I might have been considered part of that crowd. I recognized that inflation data wasn’t being reported accurately, and said as much. I coined the phrase…Read More

Category: Inflation, Really, really bad calls, UnGuru

Tapering Is Now Tightening

Tapering Is Now Tightening David R. Kotok July 19, 2014     For a long time, as we saw it, tapering and the threat of tapering (as in last year’s taper tantrum) did not constitute tightening. Today we explore why we believe the situation has now changed. In order to understand why tapering was not…Read More

Category: Bailouts, Credit, Federal Reserve, Fixed Income/Interest Rates, Think Tank