JOHN WILLIAMS’ SHADOW GOVERNMENT STATISTICS
August 27, 2009
Gross Domestic Income Down 2.1% in 2nd Quarter
With Record 4.6% Annual Decline
Housing and Durable Goods Not Signaling Recovery
PLEASE NOTE: The next scheduled Flash Update is for next Friday (September 4th), following release of the August employment and unemployment data. There also will be an interim communication updating the money supply situation, the systemic solvency crisis and the outlook for the employment report.
– Best wishes to all, John Williams
Economy Remains in Deepening Downturn. Aside from a one-time upside blip from the Cash-for Clunkers Program, which has still to surface meaningfully in series such as retail sales and durable goods orders, there is little on the horizon promising improved economic data. Highly touted monthly gains seen in new and existing home sales and in new orders for durable goods either were statistically meaningless (the Census Bureau release on the 9.6% monthly July gain in new home sales again included the caution that "The Census Bureau does not have sufficient statistical evidence to conclude that the actual change is different from zero.") Further, distortions from the extreme nature of the current downturn have made meaningful interpretation of data from series such as home sales extremely difficult. The National Association of Realtors, for example touted a strong monthly gain in July existing home sales, but stopped reporting its estimate of sales generated by foreclosures, which purportedly accounted for nearly a third of the activity in June. The durable goods numbers are covered below. The nature of the ongoing downturn and still-deepening systemic solvency crisis will be reviewed in the next update.