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Thursday, January 17, 2013

Industrial Production Was Strong, But

Industrial Production was strong in December. The headline is +0.3, but manufacturing turned in +0.8. There was a huge drop in utility production at -4.8, which brought the headline down. So that was very nice. We ended the year having broken the 77 barrier for capacity utilization, all the more impressive because of low utility sales. I suspect the SA has something to do with the utilities - less holiday lighting.

Unfortunately, the first two January manufacturing surveys both came in solidly in the negatives. Philly Fed (-5.8). Empire State (-7.8). Philly Fed asked questions about constraints on employment:
 
This isn't wildly favorable. Empire State showed a big pickup in input prices, which makes one wonder. 

The Fed seems to be backing and filling on its bond buying plans, but I guess these two will assuage the angst for this month about the effects.  



Comments:
Manufacturing just isn't big enough in this country to pull down the average much unless manufacturing contracts severely.

I don't believe much of the Fed's newly created money gets into the broad economy, but if stocks and real estate rise, the wealth effect will prevail.

At least for a while.


 
Five year plan in 4!
 
Joseph - I think manufacturing is holding up the entire US economy. It is not the direct jobs, but the indirect effect - you move so much material in manufacturing, for example, that it has a notable effect on freight.

And then there are all the collateral jobs created.

Cheap electricity is making it more favorable to insource currently. Fracking has been more of a boon to the US economy than all the Fed purchases.
 
CF - that's one scary little chart.

The question is whether they will pay a bounty for flies or pythons, and whether we will be expected to build blast furnaces in playgrounds or manufacture our own cups out of wood we chop down in Central Park.


 
CF - and here are the brave new regulators for the Great Leap Backward - all your assets are regulated by us!
 
I believe it's best for all Jews to Register at the local Post Office as they're the one's who would create the scams to steal the money from Retiree's.
 
Unfortunately the Constitution is still a hindrance to that fine idea, CF. I guess that's why we have Georgetown Law profs pushing the idea that we should just abolish it.

It would also be good to maybe get them to wear little symbols, so innocent retirees could tell who they were dealing with.

Once we get rid of the rule of law we will make such huge advances into utopia!

That is one of the scariest articles I have ever read.
 
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