Waiting for the Other Sheep To Drop… Or Not


Does anyone really know what’s going on?  Despite the gloom and doom of my recent posts (Waiting for the Other Sheep to Drop, Alphabet Soup:  What Shape will the Recovery Take?), the latest publication of the Conference Board’s Leading Economic Index (LEI) on Tuesday trumpets:  “Fifth Consecutive Increase!”  The LEI is supposed to predict economic activity approximately 6 months into the future, so you’d think that a five-month run would mean it’s time to celebrate, especially given what looks like the impressive bounce shown in this graph. ...  Additional Details

Alphabet Soup: What Shape Will the Recovery Take?


On the anniversary of Lehman Brothers’ demise and the near-collapse of global markets, it seems appropriate to take a step back from our little corner of heaven for a wider view.

Given where we were a year ago, the world seems to have heaved a huge, if cautious, sigh of relief.  During the chill days of February, the stock market had lost more than half it’s value.  Now it’s down “only” 35%.

San Francisco home prices have also improved.  In January home prices were down 37% from their all-time highs. By July prices had recovered 11%. In August, however, prices fell back 2%.  That’s a pretty stiff drop. (Click the chart for a big version.) ...  Additional Details

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