The Keynesians will not be pleased. Despite the holiday season, December spending disappointed with no change MoM (0.0% vs +0.1% exp). This is further sentiment-destructivbe as income data rose more than expected MoM (+0.3% vs +0.2% exp) even as income growth YoY slipped to its weakest in 9 months. This of course means the personal savings rate rose, pushing to 5.5% - the highest since 2012.
By surprising markets with a move to a negative deposit rate, the Bank of Japan gave investors temporary reprieve, providing a much needed opportunity to pare portfolio risk at better prices. Unfortunately, the improvement in financial asset prices will be short-lived; except, of course, for long-maturity Treasuries.
"Before investors sell 10s, they need the Fed to pause... The curve flattens into March 2s10s with risk off market dynamics and an increasing probability of relent, followed by bear steepening after a Fed pause. Rates could then stabilize or decline, depending on whether recession is avoided or at least postponed."
The end result was that in November personal savings was $748 billion, a $9.4 billion decline from the $757 billion a month ago, which translates into a 5.5% savings rate, down from last month's 5.6%, however well above the average rate seen over the past 12 months as consumers continue to be unwilling to dip into their savings despite the so-called "gas" tax cut.
It's official: the start to the holiday shopping has been a disaster, and it's not simply due to a shift to online spending.
While US floor markets are closed for the Thanksgiving holiday (equity, rates and energy futures are open until 1pm Eastern), Europe and Asia (as well as US equity futures) were busy rebounding overnight on strength in the commodity complex following yesterday's news that China's metals producers have asked for a wholesale government bailout or the "QEmmodity" as we have dubbed it, for the first time since 2009, which together with news that China would soon start arresting "malicious metal sellers" has provided a push for commodity prices across the board.
If this data is accurate, and keep in mind the BEA has a habit of revising spending higher after it revises income, to "boost" GDP as we revealed last year, this means that the US consumer is hunkering down at an unprecedented pace, and the 5.6% savings rate is now the highest since 2012, suggesting not only are US consumer unwilling to spending much money, but are actively worried about what is coming just around the corner.
The investment thesis for gold has never been limited to popular relationships, such as CPI-type inflation, financial meltdown or political instability. We prefer to focus on the irretrievable gap between financial assets (claims on future output) and productive output (GDP). In essence, the most compelling reason to own gold is that financial assets have lost their underpinnings to sustainable productive output.
The mid-year bounce is over. Both Personal Income (+0.1% vs +0.2% exp) and Personal Spending (+0.1% vs +0.2% exp) missed expectations and slowed dramatically. This is the weakest spending growth since January and weakest income growth since March driving the savings rate to its highest since April.
Having government control over the levers of the economy can have advantages. For example, by taking prompt action, the Chinese government was able to pull the economy out of the recession remarkably fast, basically by fire-housing the stimulus package that was equivalent to 12% GDP. That’s the advantage. The only problem is that these kinds of short-term advantages come with long-term, painful consequences.
Personal income rose at 0.3% MoM in August, the weakest growth and biggest miss since March's tumble. At the same time spending rose 0.4% MoM, slightly more than expected. Of course this relative shift means the savings rate declined from 4.7% to 4.6%, which is to be cheered by economic models the emphasize spending over saving.
The negative feedback look between Brazil's political and economic crises is serving to make each day worse than the last. Tuesday was no exception...
Everything is so wonderful that a rate hike would equate to saying the Fed has won. Seven years of ZIRP and a few selling periods when the Fed stopped POMO’s and QE injections, we can easily say with extreme confidence that the Fed won. And by won we mean didn’t ruin the system entirely. Except they did.
When the bubble vision stock peddlers get desperate, they talk decoupling. So by the end of yesterday’s bloodbath you would have thought China was on another planet, and that “commodities” were some trinket-like collectibles gathered by people who don’t wear long pants, drink coca cola or jabber on their cell phones. On these fine shores, of course, its all awesome from sea to shinning sea. So don’t be troubled. Buy the dip.
While the headline spending and income data consists of marginal moves, personal spending missed expectations by the largest amount since the dismal weather-strewn days of January. Consumption rose 0.3% in July, less than the 0.4% expectation and flat from the 0.3% June print. Income rose 0.4% - in line with expectations - ticking up YoY to 4.3% 0 juiced by a $13 billion government transfer receipts print - the most since March. The savings rate ticked up once again as those darned consumers refuse to spend as the elite demand.