This page has been archived and commenting is disabled.

So Which Is It: iPhone 5 Now Blamed For Q4 GDP Drop

Tyler Durden's picture


It was only a month ago when JPM's Michael Feroli humorously predicted that Q4 GDP would be boosted by 0.5% due iPhone 5 sales, a comment which even the most clueless economists saw right through, and which we commented on as follows: "don't laugh: yes, US GDP, not that of China where the iPhone is actually produced, but the US where the consumer merely incurs more record student loans to be able to afford it." Well, in a prime example of goal-seeking data to fit reality, here comes that other quite humorous "economist", Deutsche Bank's Joe LaVorgna (recall that Joe is sadly a loser when pitted against the groundhog), who has come up with a slightly different solution: namely that the iPhone led to a drop in Q4 GDP. Step aside Bush, now everything (both good and bad) is the iPhone's fault.

The above is derived from his discussion of today's massive trade deficit surge, driven as we observed earlier, by a spike in imports:

The surge in imports was in the ex?petroleum goods category ($158.9B vs. $149.6B previously). In fact, the increase in imports was heavily tilted toward consumer goods, which rose $4.6B, and to a lesser degree by autos ($1.5B) and industrial supplies ($1.3B). Perhaps the release of the iPhone 5 is boosting the consumer goods category, as cell phones increased by $1.8B.

And since soaring imports lead to a drop in GDP, it means iPhone5 launch ->  US GDP drop. In other words, when all else fails, goal seek any variable BS to fit your flawed model.

If there are still those who are confused by why the title "economist/strategist" is the most laughter-inducing of all on Wall Street, this should hopefully answer it.


- advertisements -

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.
Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:18 | 3144149 Cognitive Dissonance
Cognitive Dissonance's picture

Hard as it may be to believe, the buffoonery has only just begun.

<We ain't seen nuttin' yet.>

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:19 | 3144151 GetZeeGold
GetZeeGold's picture



I blame it on Samsung really.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 12:43 | 3144426 NotApplicable
NotApplicable's picture

I blame the BIS.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 13:33 | 3144630 Skateboarder
Skateboarder's picture

It's eventually Timmy Cook that will get the blame. "He took a company of immense power and secrecy and flushed it down the loo." Although we know that's not the case entirely.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:57 | 3144274 LongSoupLine
LongSoupLine's picture

I agree Cog...


Hey, wait...I've a great idea!  Just mint a fucking Trillion iPhone 5 Coin.


Fuck, I could be Nobel eCONomist!

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 12:01 | 3144283 Lohn Jocke
Lohn Jocke's picture

We need iPhones to be more elastic.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 12:34 | 3144406 glenlloyd
glenlloyd's picture

Well....with the discussion of a 'trillion dollar coin' I have to believe we're moving in the 'buffoon' direction.

Although I think you're right, we ain't seen nuttin yet...

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 12:55 | 3144463 WhyDoesItHurtWh...
WhyDoesItHurtWhen iPee's picture

I wonder if a 'trillion dollar coin'  bounces very high in a coin toss?

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:18 | 3144150 Xibalba
Xibalba's picture

Sure it's not gun related? (iPhone 5 leads to run on ammo?)

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:21 | 3144164 GetZeeGold
GetZeeGold's picture



You can buy an iPhone on any street corner.......ammo........not so much.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:42 | 3144232 pods
pods's picture

What about if you bought ammo FROM your iphone 5?


Fri, 01/11/2013 - 12:06 | 3144294 Cognitive Dissonance
Cognitive Dissonance's picture

Working the problem. Please hold.

<Congratulations! You're just won an all expenses paid vacation to FEMA Camp # 382. No need to pack because everything you need will be provided during your extended stay. The bus is on it's way to your GPS coordinates at this moment. Enjoy!>

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 18:13 | 3145658 quartshort
quartshort's picture

Result= iArrested

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:19 | 3144156 Nihilarian
Nihilarian's picture

Not enough iPhone 5 screens have been broken...

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:20 | 3144162 geoffr
geoffr's picture

The broken iPhone screen fallacy?

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:19 | 3144157 geoffr
geoffr's picture

The iPhone is assembled in China. It's made all over the place, but mostly in Asia.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 13:07 | 3144506 Acet
Acet's picture

Don't forget all the US input that went into the new iPhone, like all the R&D to create that 5th row of icons or all that US-based management know-how that went into choosing which Asian sweatshop is responsible for manufacturing which bit or into assembling the best possible compensation board so as to maximize management income.

This stuff is simply priceless!

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:20 | 3144161 AccreditedEYE
AccreditedEYE's picture

In a world where they've made a "Geithner Model", why bother even getting worked up? Should we expect people to be held accountable or actual facts to move any given price? Just buy, just buy.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:25 | 3144177 Water Is Wet
Water Is Wet's picture

You're trolling too hard.  Chill out.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:31 | 3144199 AccreditedEYE
AccreditedEYE's picture

Sorry. So f-ing sick of this bullshit. Sit around and wait for a "reality" that never and will never come. Idiots chat up yachts on CNBS while we have record numbers suffering globally. I'll calm it down a bit.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:21 | 3144166 caimen garou
caimen garou's picture

so super storm sandy is out of the picture too?

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:47 | 3144246 ebworthen
ebworthen's picture

Nine months post Sandy it will be the spike in birth rate, and welfare rolls, and SNAP/EBT costs.

They'll milk Sandy for Home Depot and Lowe's too, saying people had to wait until Summer/Fall 2013 for good weather to fix and build.

Then, on the one year anniversary, the Moms will show up with the babies at memorial events and meet the out of town construction workers and there will be a spike in condom, wedding cake, and iPhone 6 sales (what with the new sexting/EBT/Chase combo app).

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 12:01 | 3144282 Dr. Richard Head
Dr. Richard Head's picture

I guess 128 million (over 40% of the population) receiving a government check just isn't enough.  Paper brings propserity, so we have that going for us. 

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 12:45 | 3144431 NotApplicable
NotApplicable's picture

"Well, ain't that America?"


Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:22 | 3144167 francis_sawyer
francis_sawyer's picture

So [to Paul Krugman]... Are we supposed to break our fucking iPhones & order new ones, or NOT?... Make up your goddamned mind!

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 12:56 | 3144451 TWSceptic
TWSceptic's picture

First aliens have to attack Foxconn, then break the iphones. Jeez do we have to explain everything?

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 15:22 | 3145054 francis_sawyer
francis_sawyer's picture

Fuck man... I don't have a PhD... I'm just trying to keep up...

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:26 | 3144180 lizzy36
lizzy36's picture

Can`t believe a silly trinket like an iphone can have this type of influence on GDP. 

Further evidence that majority of yanks are merely sheeple who want the latest status symbol that will help them be identified as wealthy and hip. 

Bernanke wins, he wants you consuming and indebted. 

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:29 | 3144195 ParkAveFlasher
ParkAveFlasher's picture

Yanks only?  Because the Brits don't live under an even greater oppression, right?

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:34 | 3144212 fuu
fuu's picture

"Can`t believe a silly trinket like an iphone can have this type of influence on GDP. 

Further evidence that majority of yanks are merely sheeple who want the latest status symbol that will help them be identified as wealthy and hip."

Or the GDP calculation is hopelessly FUBAR'd and gamed like everything else.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 13:25 | 3144583 Acet
Acet's picture

It's very simple to boost GDP numbers by understating official inflation figures.

Nominal GDP is calculated in dollars but inflation means that the same things translate to more dollars each year, so the nominal GDP is corrected using official inflation numbers to produced the real GDP which is then published.

If the official inflation figures are fiddled to be less than real inflation then the result is that the nominal GDP is corrected down by less than the amount needed to offset dollar devaluation from inflation, so published (supposedly-) real GDP figures will be pumped up by inflation. The result of this process is then sold to us by the media as GDP growth.

This seems to be the case at least in the US and UK - people are seeing much higher increases in cost of living than official inflation figures, multiple people complain that official inflation calculations understate the real inflation suffered by people and meanwhile central banks are creating more inflation through money printing. GDP figures for both countries are almost certainly significantly overstated and most likelly in reality their GDP is not growing at all.


Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:47 | 3144248 AlaricBalth
AlaricBalth's picture

"Nothing, therefore, needs to be more emphasized than the warning that we should not, like sheep, follow the lead of the throng in front of us, travelling, thus, the way that all go and not the way that we ought to go. Yet nothing involves us in greater trouble than the fact that we adapt ourselves to common report in the belief that the best things are those that have met with great approval, – the fact that, having so many to follow, we live after the rule, not of reason, but of imitation. The result of this is that people are piled high, one above another, as they rush to destruction. And just as it happens that in a great crush of humanity, when the people push against each other, no one can fall down without drawing along another, and those that are in front cause destruction to those behind – this same thing, You may see happening everywhere in life. No man can go wrong to his own hurt only, but he will be both the cause and the sponsor of another’s wrongdoing. For it is dangerous to attach one’s self to the crowd in front, and so long as each one of us is more willing to trust another than to judge for himself, we never show any judgement in the matter of living, but always a blind trust, and a mistake that has been passed on from hand to hand finally involves us and works our destruction."


Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:26 | 3144182 orangegeek
orangegeek's picture

Yep - more moronic reasons as to why something is happening.


These lumps have to come up with reasons to justify their day jobs.


Dow Jones Daily got its jump yesterday.


More earnings reports please - let's see how long they will hold up - Ben and Barry must be buying up everything they can these days.


US Government owns NYSE and NASDAQ - now that would never happen.  Would it?

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:26 | 3144184 ParkAveFlasher
ParkAveFlasher's picture

Looks like $1650/$30 au/ag floor has been re-established.  As the Irish say, slainte!

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:32 | 3144203 orangegeek
orangegeek's picture

US Dollar is being pushed down hard, but the markets and gold aren't responding in the opposite direction.


Euro has been rocketing too (broke May 2012 high) - still markets are failing to respond.


If the USD were to turn back up ...

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:26 | 3144185 busted by the b...
busted by the bailout's picture

Hark, I hear the faint giant sucking sound of globalization.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:32 | 3144204 HeatMiser
HeatMiser's picture

That's not what you hear its the FAKE FLU EPIDEMIC. The MSM propaganda says the economy is fuck up because of the FLU.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:37 | 3144221 kridkrid
kridkrid's picture

Too bad Perot was a fraud and threw the "debate" on NAFTA... Not that it matters much...our fate was sealed long before Ross Perot.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:47 | 3144247 Joe Davola
Joe Davola's picture

See Larry, you cut twice, measure once, then go on some call-in show with prearranged calls to talk your book.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 13:14 | 3144544 NotApplicable
NotApplicable's picture

He seemed such a promising CIA asset too! Certainly made for an interesting horse race (back when I was still of the idiotic "WE have to do SOMETHING!!!" mindset).

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:53 | 3144264 krispkritter
krispkritter's picture

That's actually Geithner with his editor. He's 'working' on getting a bigger book deal...

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:31 | 3144202 Gamma735
Gamma735's picture

When your big innovation is a slightly larger screen and moving the headphone jack to the bottom of the phone, you are out of innovation.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:40 | 3144230 kridkrid
kridkrid's picture

Don't forget the "do not disturb" feature. Remarkable.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:45 | 3144243 pods
pods's picture

Don't forget the 5th row of icons!

You can now piss away time 20% more efficiently.


Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:48 | 3144250 Joe Davola
Joe Davola's picture

Who needs that, when we've got ZH!

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 12:48 | 3144437 NotApplicable
NotApplicable's picture

God forbid one have to scroll to the next screen. Just think of the reduction in healthcare costs not having to treat all of those RSI cases!

Then again, that will reduce GDP...

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:34 | 3144213 pragmatic hobo
pragmatic hobo's picture

what this is saying is that the trade-deficit ex-petrol is mostly meaningless.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:35 | 3144214 AnAnonymous
AnAnonymous's picture

a comment which even the most clueless economists saw right through

'Americans' usually see through their propaganda.

'Americans' usually assess the potential of the propaganda, whether they can monetize it etc

'Americans' are addicted to cheap propaganda.

So when an 'american' turns down a propaganda bit, it means a lot on the quality of it. A lot.

But most of the time, 'americans' are aware of propaganda and fantasy. They are simply unable to operate without it. Quite different.

When you meet a strongly addicted to drugs, looking for a fix for months and that it turns down your stuff, the stuff is merely not good.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:43 | 3144237 kridkrid
kridkrid's picture

You give Americans WAY too much credit. Most Americans remain remarkably bliss and unaware, I believe.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 12:55 | 3144458 NotApplicable
NotApplicable's picture

Bliss is being replaced by stress, as the facade continues to give way, exposing its holder to the reality of their own cognitive dissonance. So they seek out new forms of escapism, such as blaming everyone else for their fucked up life.

So, unless still safely comforted with wealth to support this insanity, awareness is coming, whether they like it or not.

Well, until that's all fixed with wars. Lots and lots of wars.

I think our environment is the political equivalent of the old saying, "Don't stick your dick in crazy!" It might start out as the most exciting thing ever, but the price to be paid in the end is never worth it.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:53 | 3144262 King_Julian
King_Julian's picture

How's the weather in Beijing these days? AA without you and my morning "constitution" I would be lost.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:38 | 3144222 tooriskytoinvest
tooriskytoinvest's picture

Flu 'Epidemic' Spreading Across The Country: Flu Widespread In 41 States And 2,257 People Have Been Hospitalized. Despite Shots, Over 100 Dead! Number ‘Still Accelerating’. Flu 'Epidemic' Declared In NYC And Boston…Threatens to 'Slow Economy Further'...

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:49 | 3144253 pods
pods's picture

Oh no, where is my plastic sheeting and duct tape?

Every year the flu makes it's run.  Every year we have an "epidemic" and people die.

I even heard someone died in NC last week!  Shocking I tell you.

And yes, I have NOT gotten my flu shot (ever) so I stay awake at night in my plastic bubble worrying.

When they prove efficacy then I will evaluate getting a shot.  Till then, piss off. 

I will just take Vitamin D and be fine.


Fri, 01/11/2013 - 12:05 | 3144303 kridkrid
kridkrid's picture

We should grab a beer sometime.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 12:21 | 3144371 pods
pods's picture

I can do.  Got spring cleaning this weeekend (cause it will be 70!) though.

You are in RTP daily right?  

As long as we stay out of Durham proper I am game.


Fri, 01/11/2013 - 13:38 | 3144655 Chump
Chump's picture

Aw c'mon man.  Hanging in Durham helps you keep your wits sharp and reminds you how sweet it is to be alive!

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 16:57 | 3145432 pods
pods's picture

Hangin in Durham keeps your wits sharp, leaving durham of how sweet it is to (still) be alive.

Of course, it is getting bad almost everywhere.


Sat, 01/12/2013 - 20:06 | 3147791 Chump
Chump's picture

True, Chapel Hill is even getting the occasional dose of reality these days.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 12:58 | 3144477 NotApplicable
NotApplicable's picture

Every time I get a reminder email from employee health, I reach over and pop another vitamin D. Then I laugh.

Then I eat lots of yummy fats (and other real food) as I get into the best shape of my life.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:51 | 3144257 adr
adr's picture

Never had a flu shot in my life, never got the flu.

Immunizations disable your immune system. Our children today are being programmed with death. Killing an already dead virus doesn't teach your body anything.

Now you have the Chicken Pox vaccine. Yes we need a vaccine for a non fatal childhood inconvenience. Anybody think maybe Chicken Pox is a learning disease for you immune system? Something that teaches it to fight off viruses.

The government wants the population to have compromised immune systems. It means that if they do choose to unleash a disease, there will be less survivors to deal with.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 12:34 | 3144405 francis_sawyer
francis_sawyer's picture

The government needs a convenient excuse to inject you with "nano-switches" [that will do what they're programmed to do when the time is right]... When you see people spontaneously barking like dogs, you'll probably know that the beta testing period is over...

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 12:59 | 3144480 NotApplicable
NotApplicable's picture

Man, I loled hard at that, but someday...

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 12:19 | 3144361 retiringteach
retiringteach's picture

the new excuse for bad econ #s

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:48 | 3144227 ebworthen
ebworthen's picture

Joe Bologna?

Oh God, not that guy, what a maroon.

I think he's a CIA/FED/Treasury operative; him and Pisani.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:43 | 3144236 Smuckers
Smuckers's picture

GDP - Got 'Da Phone?

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:49 | 3144242 lunaticfringe
lunaticfringe's picture

"Figures never lie, liars figure."

Like most ZH readers, I feel like I live in this alternative financial make believe world. It is driven by bank employed lackeys who get up everyday, give interviews on bank bought and paid for networks, driven by bank and corporate owned media. The sons of bankers always say the same shit. They are as bought and paid for as everyone else in the financial world. Say something counter to the banking theme and off with your head. Hostages. 

I am surprised they let Santelli talk. Surprised the bankers have threatened to pull their advertising. I guess because Santelli never really targets the villains by name. Look at Liesman. The bankers own him.

Nobody tells the fucking truth anymore. The cowards are clogging the drains and we can't get rid of them.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 12:02 | 3144284 adr
adr's picture

I had a one year internship with Lincoln Financial when I graduated college. It proved to me that finance was a sector I didn't want anything to do with.

My logical mind and ethical upbringing were in total conflict with everything I saw on a daily basis. I would see one guy pumping his fist watching a stock ticker, another crying on his keyboard.

I was told many times. We are not in this business to help people, we're in this business to make money. The more we get people to buy, the more commision we make. It says on the prospectus that they can lose money, if they do its their money and we still get paid.

What a great business model. When I started I thought we were supposed to help people set up investments for retirement. It was there I learned that anyone expecting to retire off buy and hold investments is a fool.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 12:19 | 3144360 lunaticfringe
lunaticfringe's picture

I had that same experience only I was working for a cash pawnshop- ITT Financial Services in Vegas usury at a minimum of 39% interest. When people called and asked what our interest rates were, we were instructed to say, "it depends on the size and length of the loan." It was total bullshit. Packaging credit life and disability at 39% interest thru ITT's fully owned Hartford Insurance.

Once I told a customer the truth (interest rate) rather than the company's BS line and the branch manager came unstuck. I told him to go fuck himself. I quit. They stole every cent of severance pay and with held it.

Most crooked place I ever worked. A finance manager on a big car lot was a solid 2nd place- those fuckers are something special too. 

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 13:08 | 3144512 NotApplicable
NotApplicable's picture

I'd guess that Santelli gets a little room to operate due to the Kochs and his association with the Chicago School of Business as one of the few talking heads that promote Friedmanism.

Besides, there has to be some alternative views presented otherwise they would arise outside of their system. Imagine Tyler as a Max Headroom type personality popping up on some renegade network. Can't have that, now can we?

So for now, we have to be happy with a mostly coherent Rick, and the Talking Silver Bears.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:52 | 3144260 SheepDog-One
SheepDog-One's picture

iEconomy D.O.A. already.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:52 | 3144263 campag
campag's picture

did someone mention drains -

68660_4240866781329_260813046_n (1)

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 11:57 | 3144275 SheepDog-One
SheepDog-One's picture

Don't worry, Apple intruding iPhone 'Ghetto' model, cheap cheap! Should get GDP back to cookin with gas again in no time.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 12:06 | 3144307 Snakeeyes
Snakeeyes's picture

Gov't manipulated markets. When iPhone drives GDP, run for cover.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 12:08 | 3144313 Hammerabi
Hammerabi's picture

Don't forget about the flu epidemic!

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 12:09 | 3144319 JSD
JSD's picture


Definition: Erroneously using Apple products to support any thesis.

Usage:  Mike: Did you hear that were going into a recession because people didn't buy enough iPhones this year?

    Jim:  Dude, sounds like some major Macturbation going on in that explaination.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 12:40 | 3144414 IamtheREALmario
IamtheREALmario's picture

The market would be in a very fragile situation if it was not for the fact that all prices are centrally controlled by the international bankers. They have apparently put out an implicit guarantee to ALL OF THEIR CLIENTS (apparently including governments) that they will maintain ridiculously high market prices and be the buyer of last resort at excessively high prices.

In keeping with that they still feel obligated to come out with ridiculous propagandized rationalization for WHY THEY DO THE INICREDIBLY ILLOGICAL THINGS THEY DO.

Yes, buffoonery CD.

Fri, 01/11/2013 - 13:11 | 3144534 dhengineer
dhengineer's picture

Back in the 60's, our mothers would send us around to our sick friends' houses to "keep them company" while they had the pox, mumps, whatever.  We would then come down with the ailment du jour, be sick for a week, and then go on with our lives.  I remember the illnesses going through the classrooms, and the wave of empty desks would surf around the room for a few weeks until everyone got through the episode.  My sixth grade teacher pointed out that most viruses travel a couple of feet at most and then demonstrated that we were all within three feet of one another by laying a yardstick from desk to desk.  We all survived, and nobody had allergies or lasting effects, well, maybe a pox scar here and there, but nothing resembling the problems kids have today.  Nobody went to the doctor to demand antibiotics, because 1) they weren't that available, and 2) everyone knew that the illnesses had to run their courses.  A fever of about 101 to 102 was the best medicine, burning out the viriuses without drugs.  We also lived very well without antiseptic soap and wipes, and we spent a good part of every summer day covered with the grime of the back yard and the playground and the sidewalks, eating our lunchtime sandwiches with less than clean hands.  That's how you build overall immunity, being exposed to all sorts of "germs" while our little bodies built up libraries of natural antidotes.  I, too, have never had a flu shot, and never will. 

Sat, 01/12/2013 - 07:39 | 3146799 dunce
dunce's picture

The flu, the iphone, Jupiter not in alignment with Mars, the list of scape goats is growing . Do not blame obama, he voted present and went golfing.

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!