Archive for October, 2012

Twenty-City Home Price Index Up 2% over Last Year

October 31, 2012

The Case-Shiller home price indices increased for the third straight month. The 10-city index increased 1.37 to 158.62 and the 20-city index increased 1.27 to 145.87. Compared to last year, the 10-city is up 1.3% and the 20-city rose 2%. The largest point gains were in Los Angeles (up 2.21 to 173.02), Washington DC (up 2.07 to 194), and Phoenix (up 2.06 to 119.28). The largest relative increase was in Detroit, which gained 1.76 points to 79.18, an increase of 2.3%. Seattle was the only market to decline in August, losing .09 points and dropping to 141.69

For more information, see our housing report.

History of the United States Congress

October 29, 2012


This chart maps the historical and ideological makeup of the US congress. It shows the ebbs and flows of left and right-leaning congress members over time. Click through for larger version.

–from XKCD

Third Quarter Real Annual GDP Growth Up 2%

October 26, 2012

Real GDP also increased, by $67.7 billion to $13.6 trillion. Nominal GDP increased $190 billion in the third quarter to $15.8 trillion. This is an increase of 1.2%. Influencing this increase were gains in personal expenditures and private investment. The value of exports and imports both fell, but exports fell less leading to a trade deficit decline. Federal spending fell slightly across all sectors, but state and local spending grew $1.3 billion, causing an overall increase in government expenditures and investment.

For more information, see our GDP report.

–From the St. Louis Federal Reserve and the Bureau of Economic Analysis

Salaries and Equity in Tech Startups

October 25, 2012

This chart maps the relationship between equity and salary in funded tech startups. Most of the jobs in the upper-right quadrant require and MBA or PhD and come with larger equity shares. Most other design and sales positions are equally high in salary, but with much smaller equity. Support and administrative positions have much lower slices of both, but still above pay norms for those jobs. Click-through image for an interactive version.


Household Growth is Up, Will Housing Starts Follow?

October 24, 2012


Growth in households, which includes any group of people living together, is a clear indicator of housing starts. At the far right of the graph new household formation has increased enormously since 2011, and this points to a potential rise in housing starts. Slight murmurs of this trend have appeared in the home price index series, which has risen in nearly all markets the past few months after years of stagnation. The Atlantic attributes this growth to a release of Millennials from their parent’s homes and out into the market, which is a likely result of an improving job market. This will in turn raise rents, as there are more bidders, and then promote increased building activity.

–From The Atlantic and Business Insider

Earnings of American Men Down 19% Since 1970

October 23, 2012


US male worker wages have slightly declined since 1970, but the median male wages fallen 19% since 1970. Much worse, however, are men with only a high school education, their wages have fallen a staggering 41% since 1970. Women’s wages increased 71% between 1970 and 2010, but the median wage has dropped 7% since 2000.

–From the New York Times

Fossil Fuels

October 23, 2012



Gas prices may be up, but it’s not from a shortage of domestically produced fossil fuels. The US is producing more than at any time in the recent past, according to University of Michigan economics professor and American Enterprise Institute scholar Mark J. Perry in a post from Business Insider. The US is also producing almost 85% of its fossil fuel consumption. If that % gets to 100%, does that mean we are energy independent? Also, I can’t tell what has happened to overall US consumption.

Money Raised by Obama & Romney

October 21, 2012


From The Guardian’s Datablog, a good visualization in Tableau of fundraising by candidates. Nothing too surprising, except maybe the the consistency in average gift per donor by state and also Illinois as an outlier.

Facts & Opinions & Politics

October 20, 2012

I don’t normally post without an image, but this article titled “The War Over Economic Facts” from Business Week resonates deeply for me and gets at the heart of why we are working on Data360.

Some good parts from the article:

In a presidential campaign dominated by the economy, it’s not surprising that both sides have inundated voters with data supporting their positions. What distinguishes this campaign is the inability of the candidates to agree even on basic facts—from whether Romney would cut taxes on the rich to whether Obama doubled the budget deficit.

Daniel Patrick Moynihan: “Everyone is entitled to his own opinion, but not to his own facts.”

There was a time when politicians sought ways to come to agreement about economic data. Earlier generations of lawmakers created nonpartisan organizations to be their official truth-tellers on budgetary matters. The key ones are the Government Accountability Office, founded in 1921; the Joint Committee on Taxation, founded in 1926; and the Congressional Budget Office, founded in 1974.

GAO: 3,200 employees
CBO: 230 employees
JCT: 60 employees

While I am disappointed in the lack of agreement between politicians about the facts, I know there are many, many people who share a commitment to objectivity and who would agree that in order to move towards a shared vision of the future, we must have a shared understanding of the present.

Effects of Quantitative Easings

October 20, 2012


10/19/12: Ryan Vice of Sierra Pacific Advisors suggested this metric: Bank Cash Assets as a percentage of Money Supply. As we’ve gone through the two quantitative easings recently, money supply has grown and so have banks cash assets. A high ratio means that banks are not able to lend all the money they are receiving from the QE’s. It takes a while for them to put the money to work. Given the long history of the metric, not clear what low on this metric will be.

See the full report on Data360 here. (TMP)