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Thursday, October 25, 2007


Mark Gilbert on investment banking fun:
Last week, though, Bank of America revealed a bigger-than- expected 32 percent drop in third-quarter earnings, posting a loss of $717 million in trading and setting aside more than $2 billion to cover bad loans. ``I've had all the fun I can stand in investment banking,'' Chief Executive Officer Kenneth Lewis said.

Ken, you are not alone. And it won't just be bonus- dependent bankers and Hedge Fund Guys that suffer as the crisis crawls to its endgame. The widows and orphans who entrusted their life savings with money-market funds might also find they have been unwitting participants in cutting-edge financial innovation.
UI claims up a leg for the second week. It doesn't matter unless it lasts for a couple more weeks and has an impact on continuing claims, though - unless you are one of the people in those stats. I have a foreboding feeling about where these are going after reviewing the last quarterly changes in employment plus the projected annual adjustments, but if I don't write about it maybe it won't bleeeeeeep happen?

Kind of a depressing durable goods advance report. I tried hard but really couldn't see much light in this one. Fabricated metal shipments and parts have dropped for several months, and YoY and monthly inventory is up. Transportation equipment YoY inventory is up, and monthly shipments and new orders are down. Computers and electronic products shipments and new orders are negative YoY and monthly. New orders for this category have been negative for two months. Monthly bleeping inventory is up for two months. I have the ugly feeling that this category reflects POS slowdown (that's Point-Of-Sale) which reflects weaker retail sales, which is the leading edge of the commercial retail bulding and mortgage problem. BLEEPETYBLEEEP!

I may have to bleeping ban myself from bleeping writing on my own bleeping blog.

Update: See CR for the scoop on New Home Sales. I could think of nothing to say about it but Holy Housing Crash, Batman! This one really met and exceeded all pessimistic expectations. Real completed new home inventory is now probably somewhere close to an astonishing 4-5 months' worth. Including in-construction, but excluding not-started, that would take us to around 8 months inventory if sales continued at 2007's pace. It seems doubtful that they will. Ballooning builder bankruptcies, Batman!

a shameless beg for a link

Chher up,some of this new construction will all apart due to shoddy construction before anyone is fool enough to buy it,thus reducing inventory.
Building inventories, declining sales volume. Stop me when you get the picture. The "broken window" effect of the SoCal fires won't make any difference. At this point we -need- a recession to clear out the dead parts of the economy. Walmart is cutting way back on new stores. They ain't stupid.
WalMart, Starbucks, restaurant chains. Yup. Retail drawback is underway.

Tom, that is not going to work out too well for the entities that underwrote the construction loans or lines to builders.

Anon - OH.MY.GOD.
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