Opinions Uncensored

Las Vegas: Record Visitor Traffic in 2015, Conventions Returning

Another update ... during the recession, I wrote about the troubles in Las Vegas and included a chart of visitor and convention attendance: Lost Vegas. Since then Las Vegas visitor traffic has recovered to new record highs.Visitor traffic was 2.9% above the record set in 2014 and 8% above the...

Thursday: Unemployment Claims, Fed Chair Janet Yellen

From Matthew Graham at Mortgage News Daily: Mortgage Rates Inch Further Into 1-Year Lows Mortgage rates barely budged today, but did manage to gain just a bit of ground. That means another 1-year low, technically, although many lenders are quoting the exact some conventional 30yr fixed rates...

We’re in Uncharted Waters

Last year I expressed the concern that the global economy of the future might be excessively influenced by a black box economy – China.  But as 2016 has picked up the turmoil that 2015 started, it’s become clear that this is not the global economy of the future.  It is the global economy we are...

AIA Forecast: 8% increase in Nonresidential Construction in 2016

Note: This does not include spending for oil and gas (that sector will be down in 2016).From the AIA: Nonresidential Construction Market Momentum to Continue Construction spending greatly exceeded expectations in the nonresidential market in 2015, and this year should see healthy growth levels...

Why Would Anyone Buy a Negative Interest Bearing Bond?

Good question here from the Q&A section about negative yielding bonds: Hi Cullen. The Economist had a good article explaining why people buy negative yielding bonds. http://www.economist.com/blogs/economist-explains/2016/02/economist-explains-6 Do you agree with their explanation? The...

Central Banks Didn’t Eat Your Lunch

One of the consistent trends you’ll find in my econ and finance work is that I don’t think much about Central Banks. In other words, I think mainstream macro puts far too much emphasis on the efficacy of things that Central Bankers do.  And when placed in the proper context I think these...

Weekly Initial Unemployment Claims decrease to 269,000

The DOL reported:In the week ending February 6, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 269,000, a decrease of 16,000 from the previous week's unrevised level of 285,000. The 4-week moving average was 281,250, a decrease of 3,500 from the previous week's unrevised average...

An update on oil prices

From the WSJ: U.S. Crude Settles at 13-Year Low on Oversupply FearsOil prices settled at their lowest levels since 2003 as growing stockpiles in the U.S. and continuing worries about falls in the wider financial markets keep oil in the red.Light, sweet crude for March delivery settled down $1...