Author Topic: This recession is far from over  (Read 750 times)

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Offline 5412

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This recession is far from over
« on: June 06, 2009, 09:32:15 PM »
Hi Folks,

Once a month I get an economic update from a bank in Switzerland.  Here is only a portion of what they had to say this month.  They seem to do their homework.



While Timothy Geithner, other official voices and the mainstream media are doing everything they can to paint a rosy picture and stretch the public´s high spirits a bit longer, it is worth looking reality in the eye with a hard dose of economic facts to keep our perspectives in sync with the reality. Please find 17 economic facts listed below that point toward a somewhat more sobering outlook.

The following is an excerpt from Don McAlvany´s latest issue of the McAlvany Intelligence Advisor (MIA). You should be sure to get a copy.

"All statistics confirm that the economy plunged off a cliff in 2008 and the first quarter of 2009:

1. U.S. FACTORY ORDERS ARE DROPPING AT A 12% ANNUALIZED RATE (down eight months in a row). Total industrial production is dropping at a 16% rate - a post-World War II record. From the 2007 peak through April, industrial production is down a Great Depression-like 16%.

2. RAILROAD FREIGHT SHIPMENTS (i.e. CARLOAD VOLUMES) ARE DOWN 22% versus a year earlier (a strong measure of declining business).

3. TRUCKING TONNAGE PLUNGED 4.5% IN MARCH, and is dropping at a 12.2% year-over-year rate - the biggest decline since World War II.

4. REAL (INFLATION-ADJUSTED) GDP FELL 6.1% in the first quarter of 2009 and over 6% for six straight months. John Williams´ Shadow Government Statistics more accurately calculates the first quarter drop at over 8%.

5. RETAIL SALES PLUNGED AT AN ANNUALIZED 10.1% RATE IN APRIL, the sharpest decline since World War II (except for the Christmas month of December 2008, which was down 10.6% - December is supposed to be the best month for retailing). Retail sales for all of 2009 are down by 9%.

6. THE BALTIC DRY INDEX (WHICH MEASURES OCEAN FREIGHT CONTAINERIZED SHIPPING) IS DOWN 77.4% OVER THE PAST YEAR (May ´08 to May ´09). The big port of Long Beach, California, reported its shipping business in March was down 32% from a year earlier.

7. THE ROLLING 12 MONTH FEDERAL DEFICIT IS $1.3 TRILLION - with total federal debt up $1.9 trillion (the real deficit) over the past 12 months. The 2009 FY deficit is projected to be $1.84 trillion, but in the real world is likely to be half again higher.

8. TAX REVENUES WERE DOWN IN APRIL BY 34% FROM A YEAR EARLIER - THE BIGGEST ONE-YEAR DROP SINCE THE GREAT DEPRESSION - and the first April (tax month) deficit in 25 years. This will prompt liberal cries for higher taxes to soak the "rich" (i.e., actually the U.S. productive middle class, who earn $200,000 or more per family).

9. CONSUMER CREDIT IS COLLAPSING - In the third quarter of 2007, banks issued $44 billion in net new loans on credit cards and other consumer credit (excluding mortgages). A year later (third quarter of 2008), this new credit had collapsed to $8.7 billion - a decline of 80%!

In the fourth quarter of 2008, new credit disappeared and lenders pulled out of the consumer credit market (i.e., reduced loan totals) by $19.5 billion. In the first quarter of 2009, total consumer credit contracted by another $12.2 billion. It is the biggest collapse in consumer credit ever recorded! (see chart).


10. CREDIT CARD LOSSES (DEFAULTS) ARE EXPLODING AT AN 8.5% ANNUALIZED RATE. MasterCard´s profits just fell 18%, while the 19 largest banks (according to regulators) are bracing for $82.4 billion in credit card losses through 2010. If unemployment continues to rise, that number could more than double.

11. U.S. HOUSING STARTS DOWN 77.6% - Three quarters of America´s largest single industry has been wiped out. Housing starts peaked in 2006 at 2.3 million units and are today barely over a half million. (see chart) The housing industry (America´s largest) is not recovering - it is in a state of collapse!


12. AUTO SALES ARE DOWN 44% - At their peak in February 2007, U.S. and foreign-owned car manufacturers sold 16.6 million units. By April 2009, those sales plunged to 9.3 million - a decline of 44% (including the best performers like Toyota and Honda) - see chart. Chrysler has just gone bankrupt, and GMAC (the nation´s largest auto loan lender) and General Motors are in their death throes.


13. CONSUMER WEALTH IS PLUNGING - Robert Altman, who worked for President Clinton, says that U.S. consumer wealth is down by 20% - from $64 trillion to $52 trillion. Steve Schwartzman, head of one of the largest private equity funds (Blackstone Group) believes the number is closer to a 45% contraction in net worth.


15. DIVIDENDS ON STOCKS ARE BEING CUT SHARPLY AS EARNINGS PLUNGE - GE has cut its dividend by 68%; others, like JP Morgan Chase, have cut their dividends by more than 80%. Thousands of such dividend cuts are coming, and will cut into the already dwindling incomes of millions of investors and retirees.

16. SMALL BUSINESSES ARE CUTTING EXPANSION PLANS or new projects due to the recession and the fear of giant new tax increases and increased regulations and controls on business.

17. HOME PRICES HAVE DROPPED 18.6% ACROSS THE COUNTRY THIS YEAR - with the residential real estate collapse (which has extinguished over $4 trillion in wealth, with no end in sight) now spreading to commercial real estate.

[ED. NOTE: Consider these 17 points when you next hear your stock broker or bubblevision shill talking about the recovery and new bull market.] [All charts courtesy of Weiss Research.] "

Offline rich_t

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Re: This recession is far from over
« Reply #1 on: June 07, 2009, 11:00:20 AM »
Unfortunately it is going to get a lot worse.  Especially if Obama and his ilk keep screwing with the economy.
"The American people will never knowingly adopt socialism. But, under the name of 'liberalism,' they will adopt every fragment of the socialist program, until one day America will be a socialist nation, without knowing how it happened." --Norman Thomas, 1944

Offline DumbAss Tanker

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Re: This recession is far from over
« Reply #2 on: June 07, 2009, 11:56:58 PM »
Yet it is hard to say whether all these issues have already been discounted in current market prices, and whether we are therefore as low as we'll go (though actually heading up is a different question). 
Go and tell the Spartans, O traveler passing by
That here, obedient to their law, we lie.

Anything worth shooting once is worth shooting at least twice.