Sep 29 2012

When it costs more to be poor – Fed and government shifting inflation onto rent, medical care, and food. QE3 to widen the gap between the poor and the wealthy.

Inflation has been picking up since the recession ended in 2009.  The problem with the CPI increasing year over year with no rise in household incomes is that the standard of living for most Americans erodes every year that incomes do not keep up.  Household incomes are back to levels last seen in the mid-1990s […]

Sep 27 2012

How the Fed bluffs the financial system – Labor force participation back to levels last seen over three decades ago. Fed policy aims at pushing US dollar lower.

The US is facing a long trend of aging Americans entering into retirement or what can be viewed as life post-work.  The vision of sitting on the sand in some resort villa is largely a dream.  Nearly half of American when they leave this world go out broke like a country western song.  Today as […]

Sep 24 2012

Deleveraging from one bubble to another – $6.2 trillion in mortgage debt was added between 2000 and 2008. Since the peak in 2008 $1.3 trillion in US household debt is gone but another bubble is brewing hidden under the rubble of the busted housing market.

There is some interesting data on the deleveraging that is occurring with the American household.  Since the peak in Q3 of 2008, US households have lowered their outstanding debt by $1.3 trillion.  It is important to understand how this deleveraging is occurring.  First of all, Americans are largely paying down existing debts much faster and […]

Sep 20 2012

The tax consequences of a shrinking middle class – Nearly half of Americans do not pay income taxes because they earn too little or are flat out on Social Security.

Recently the topic of taxes has been put on center stage again.  Aside from the political bickering the data shows us an even more disturbing trend.  The middle class is demonstrably shrinking at a time that the government is spending money it doesn’t have while the Fed is digitally printing money to save its allied […]

Sep 17 2012

100 million credit card accounts are gone since 2008 – Credit card balances decline by 22 percent since their 2008 peak.

Credit cards have been used as a lifeline and a way to live beyond one’s means in the United States for many years.  Yet the current environment of deleveraging is hitting credit cards hard.  The outstanding balance on credit card debt has reached a level last seen over a decade ago.  This is positive since […]

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