Archive for July, 2012

Median Wages for Men Have Declined Since 1969

July 31, 2012

This graph, released in a wage study by¬†The Hamilton Project, shows that mean earnings for men have declined since 2000, but median earnings have dropped since 1969. These graphs show wages in 2009 dollars. Though that’s only part of the issue. The graphs shows full-time men only, but if you include all men then the median wage falls a much steeper 28% over the same period. Men without a high school diploma suffer the most from this decline. Their wages have fallen 66% since 1969. However, education doesn’t stop the issue–median wages for men with some college still fell by a third.

–From The Washington Post and The Hamilton Project

Weekly Initial Unemployment Claims Down 35,000

July 26, 2012

Initial claims of unemployment fell 35,000 (9%) last week to 353,000. Prior to the first week in July, this is the lowest number of claims since the last week of May, 2008. Although this change is a good sign and this week’s numbers down significantly, this data has a lot of week-to-week noise.

–From the St. Louis Federal Reserve and the Bureau of Labor Statistics

June 2012 CPI of Lodging Away from Home 17.6% Higher than December 2011

July 24, 2012

The cost of lodging away from home increased 17.6% between December 2011 and June 2012. This is a massive spread between the yearly peak and trough of the lodging price index. By looking at the six month change, the swings of seasonality are clear. It also becomes clear that the seasonal swing is increasing massively over time. The peak difference in June 2012 is 1.7% higher than June 2011, 3.1% higher than June 2010, and 6.3% over June 2002.

In other words, lodging costs 17.6% more in June than in December. With differences that large, maybe it’s time to plan a December trip?

–From Data at the St. Louis Federal Reserve. Chart created at Data360. Each data point in graph shows CPI of Lodging Away from Home minus CPI of Lodging Away from Home six months prior and converted to percent change.

July 18, 2012

This map shows the locations of US shale gas deposits. Shale currently contributes about a third of America’s gas, but could be as much as half by 2035. Due to the fast increase in extraction prices were as low as $2 this year and are expected to stay low for some time to come.

–From The Economist


Retail and Food Service Sales Down .5% in June

July 16, 2012

Retail and Food Service sales dropped $1.9 billion dollars to $401.5 billion. This marks the 3rd consecutive month of decline, with June down 1.2% since March’s peak. However, this June is up 3.8% compared to June 2011, so the larger trend still points upward.

ISM New Orders Index Dropped 20% in June

July 9, 2012

The ISM New Orders index fell 20.5% in June, the largest one-month percent change since October 2008, when the first recession-related drop hit. Prior to that drop, the largest was the post-9/11 drop-off. In other words, this past month’s drop is an historic decline.

US Economy Adds 176,000 Jobs in June

July 5, 2012

The economy added 176,000 jobs in June, bringing the total nonfarm private payroll to 110,898,000. This is the highest payroll has been since January 2009. In addition, initial weekly unemployment claims fell 14,000 to 374,000 for the last week of June. Tomorrow’s Bureau of Labor Statistics monthly employment report will provide more context to these promising early numbers.

Manufacturing Sector Shrinks for First Time in Three Years

July 3, 2012

The ISM Manufacturing index was reported at 49.7 in June, a decline of 3.8. This is the first time since July 2009 that the index fell below 50, indicating a contraction of the sector. Corresponding to this decline, the price index fell a massive 10.5 points to 37. The new orders index fell into contraction, losing 12.3 points to 47.8. The non-manufacturing index will be released on Thursday. Considering the declines seen today, the non-manufacturing sectors will likely not have good news.