Even the government is admitting that the U.S. economy is slowing down. On Thursday, we learned that U.S. GDP grew at just a 0.5 percent annual rate during the first quarter of 2016. This was lower than analysts were anticipating, and it marks the third time in a row that the GDP number has declined compared to the previous quarter. In other words, GDP growth has been declining for close to a year now, and this lines up perfectly with what I have been saying about how the second half of last year was a turning point that plunged us into the early chapters of a brand new economic crisis. And as you will see below, the official GDP number is highly manipulated, and the way that it is calculated has been changed numerous times over the years. So the bad number that is being reported by the government is actually the best case scenario.
H/T reader squodgy:
“I’ve been advocating the principles of “THE GROWTH ILLUSION” by the late Richard Douthwaite for a few years now,
GDP GROWTH benefits nobody but the Banksters.
They use it to push businesses to expand. The businesses can only expand using loans/overdrafts/bonds. Who benefits from this????Doh!”
Full article here:
We must stop worshiping the false god of GDP growth.
Scholars are still trying to figure out why the society on Easter Island collapsed, ending the people famed for their construction of towering stone heads. One interesting theory holds that it had to do with the heads themselves. Somehow, the islanders decided that the giant heads represented power and success, so different groups competed to build as many heads as possible. But because there was only one quarry, to move the stones around the island required felling trees to use as rollers. To feed their lust for heads, they felled the trees so eagerly that, over just a few generations, what was once a tropical forest was reduced to barren scrubland.
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Moments ago, in its latest Q4 GDP revision, the Atlanta Fed just pulled the rug from under the economy (and the market now that bad news for the economy is bad news for stocks), and slashed its latest quarterly forecast by another 50%, from 1.3% to a barely positive 0.7%. In other words, according to the Atlanta Fed, Janet Yellen launched a rate hike cycle in a quarter when GDP will be just 0.7%, and which when averaged across the prior 3 quarters, would mean that the US will have grown at just 1.8% in 2015, a 25% drop from the 2.4% GDP growth in 2014.
“The conditions in the economies of the rest of the world have undoubtedly proved weaker compared with a few months ago, in particular in the emerging economies. Global growth forecasts have been revised downwards. This slowdown is probably not temporary.”
Undoubtedly, the most amusing this about the prospect of more easing from the ECB (as telegraphed by Mario Draghi last week) and the BoJ (where Haruhiko Kuroda just jeopardized his status as monetary madman par excellence by failing to expand stimulus) is that both Europe and Japan both recently slid back into deflation despite trillions in central bank asset purchases.
In other words, the market expects both Draghi and Kuroda to double- and triple- down on policies that clearly aren’t working when it comes to altering inflation expectations and/or boosting aggregate demand. Indeed, both Goldman and BofAML said as much last week. For those who missed it, here’s Goldman’s take
“The discrepancy between economic growth and the two key indicators’ growth in the first six months did not fit with previous patterns, but industrial restructuring is a new factor, and should be taken into account when analyzing the new situation.”
Uploaded on Feb 12, 2010
– Not “Unequivocally Good” – Canada Enters Recession (ZeroHedge, Sept 1, 2015):
It appears low oil prices are not awesome for everyone. For the second quarter in a row, Canadian GDP dropped (-0.5%) pushing America’s northern neighbor back into recession. What is ironic is that this was better than the 1% drop that was expected and so CAD is strengthening.
and the kneejerk is a strengthening of CAD against the USD as the drop was less than expected…
– China Stunner: Real GDP Is Now A Negative -1.1%, Evercore ISI Calculates (ZeroHedge, Aug 26, 2015):
With Chinese data now an official farce even among Wall Street economists, tenured academics, and all others whose job obligation it is to accept and never question the lies they are fed, the biggest question over the past year has been just what is China’s real, and rapidly slowing, GDP – which alongside the Fed, is the primary catalyst of the global risk shakeout experienced in recent weeks.
One thing that everyone knows and can agree on, is that it is not the official 7% number, or whatever goalseeked fabrication the communist party tries to push to a world that has realized China can’t even manipulate its stock market higher, let alone its economy.
Imagine my absence of shock.
– GDP Shocker: Atlanta Fed Sees Q3 Growth At A Laughable 1% (ZeroHedge, Aug 6, 2015):
The Atlanta Fed’s Q1 and Q2 GDP forecasts were virtually spot on with what the BEA ultimately reported. Which is why if its accuracy persists, not only the Fed, but Wall Street strategists suddenly have a very big headache on their hands. Moments ago, the Atlanta Fed just released its much anticipated first estimate for Q3 GDP. It was a doozy, at just 1.0%, or more than 2% below the consensus sellside estimate.
From the article:
What is disturbing is that as noted before, inventories contributed the biggest component of Q1 GDP growth, adding $106 billion in nominal “growth.” Without that contribution, annualized GDP would have been worse than -3%!
In short: welcome to the recession, which however will soon be double seasonally adjusted into another flourishing, of only stiatistically, “recovery.”
– “Welcome To The Contraction”: Q1 GDP Drops By 0.7%, Corporate Profits Crash (ZeroHedge, May 29, 2015):
And you thought the preliminary 0.2% Q1 GDP print from last month was bad. Moments ago, just as we warned, the BEA released its latest, first, revision of Q1 GDP (pre second-seasonal adjustments of course), and we just got confirmation that for the third time in the past four years, the US economy suffered a quarterly contraction, with the Q1 GDP revised drastically from a 0.2% growth to a drop of -0.7%: the worst print since snow struck, so very unexpectedly, last winter.
Incidentally, there has not been a US “expansion” with three negative quarters in it in the past 60 years.