Monthly Archives: September 2011

Why Can’t We Create Jobs?

September 2, 2011
By
Why Can’t We Create Jobs?

I’ve been holding a constructive view on the economy and markets for a number of reasons. The economy isn’t as soft as has been presented and market valuations are extremely low for a non-recessionary environment (if that is indeed the environment we are in). Today’s Employment Report was downright ugly. Being constructive, I could search for some of the glimmers within the guts of the report such as the household survey’s 331k new jobs or that the employment-population ratio ticked up slightly. This is a stretch though, and the report was clearly a disappointment because in normal cycles of economic recovery we “re-create” jobs which are lost during recessions. I believe the primary reasons the job market has been in a funk, where it is stable, but not creating...

Read more »

Retail Chain Sales Very Strong – No Recession

September 1, 2011
By
Retail Chain Sales Very Strong – No Recession

It was particularly impressive that sales in August were not only strong for retailers that sell lots of food and consumer products (which benefited from the buying panic pre-Irene) but that they were broadly strong. While the food and broadline retailers should have benefited from some buying “pull-forward” before the storm, other retailers such as department stores and specialty apparel retailers were clearly hurt. You don’t need to rush out and buy apparel before a storm, and these retailers had up to hundreds of stores closed over a key back-to-school shopping weekend. It bodes very well that results were stronger than expected, and strong in an absolute sense, despite missed selling days on a key weekend. September will benefit as sales of apparel and discretionary items gets pushed out...

Read more »