Have nothing to do with the [evil] things that people do, things that belong to the darkness. Instead, bring them out to the light... [For] when all things are brought out into the light, then their true nature is clearly revealed...

-Ephesians 5:11-13

Category Archives: Economics

Labor Department: October Job Gains Exceed Expectations Once Again

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Friday, November 6, 2020:  

Hard on the heels of Wednesday’s report from ADP showing the economy adding more than 400,000 jobs in October came the announcement from the U.S. Labor Department: Job gains were closer to 640,000. Economists surveyed by Dow Jones were expecting just 530,000 new jobs in October.

When considering that this reflected the layoff of some 147,000 government census workers in October, the economy’s rebound last month was, in one economist’s words, “amazing.” Michael Arone, chief investment strategist at State Street Global Advisors, said:

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Passage of Prop 22 Sets Tone for National Gig Economy

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Thursday, November 5, 2020: 

When Kim Kavin, co-founder of Fight for Freelancers, learned that California voters passed Proposition 22 overwhelmingly on Tuesday, she was delighted: “Everybody is celebrating today.… We are just thrilled about this one result.”

But her organization is located in New Jersey, on the opposite side of the country from California. And Proposition 22 is just simply another

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ADP: More Than 400,000 New Jobs Created in October

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Wednesday, November 4, 2020:  

According to payroll processor ADP, more than 400,000 new jobs were created by the Trump economy in October. This is the sixth month of gains in a row since the shutdown, during which the economy has added back almost 10 million jobs from the 19.7 million lost in March and April.

The gains were broad-based, with new jobs being added in every sector: manufacturing (17,000), services (348,000), and franchise employment (49,600).

The job gains reflect the remarkable comeback

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Three More Indicators Suggest Trump Victory on Tuesday

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Monday, November 2, 2020: 

The report released Monday morning by the Institute for Supply Management (ISM) once again exceeded forecasters’ expectations, and added to the momentum of the Trump reelection campaign. That campaign has touted the V-shaped rebound from the COVID shutdown for months, and today’s report confirms it.

The ISM’s index of purchasing managers (PMI) reflects their optimism in the manufacturing sector of the U.S. economy, and any number above 50 reflects expansion. Forecasters had expected a reading of 55.7. ISM reported it rising to 59.3, nearly four full points in just the last month. It’s also the highest reading since September 2018 when the economy was already in full throat.

The index not only reflects how purchasing managers are viewing the economy at the moment, it’s also a harbinger for the expansion continuing well into the new year, according to Timothy Fiore, head of the survey. “This figure indicates expansion in the overall economy for the sixth month in a row,” Fiore said, adding:

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Roaring Economic Numbers Boosting Trump’s Reelection Chances

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Monday, October 26, 2020:  

The latest survey of consumers from the University of Michigan — its “Preliminary Results for October 2020” — just released showed “gains in economic prospects for the year ahead,” according to its authors. And that’s just the beginning of the reports issued last week and those coming this final full week before election day.

In September its Index of Consumer Sentiment was 80.4; a month later it is 81.2. Its Index of Consumer Expectations for September was 75.6; for October it’s 78.8. When the results are broken down by political party, “Trump still held an advantage over Biden,” the same advantage he held in September, according to the UMich survey.

The “flash” (preliminary) output, services, and manufacturing indices from the data firm IHS Markit on Friday each showed 20-month highs, with its author reporting:

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Red States Bouncing Back from Shutdown; Blue States Lagging Behind

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Thursday, October 15, 2020:

Back in May, Kevin Hassett, former chairman of President Trump’s Council of Economic Advisors, noted that so-called Red states — those governed by largely Republicans — were opening sooner than Blue states — those governed largely by Democrats — and suggested it was something that should be studied.

JustTheNews (JTN) completed just such a study. By analyzing the latest (August) data available from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Carrie Sheffield, JTN’s investigative journalist, saw clearly the difference in approach to opening up the states. She noted that

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Another Economic Report Points to Trump Reelection

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Friday, October 9, 2020:

The latest report from the Atlanta Federal Reserve Bank’s GDPNow model was raised on Tuesday from 34.6 percent to 35.3 percent.

These are blowout numbers not seen in history and obliterate the old record set 70 years ago during the Truman administration.

This estimate will be confirmed when

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Unemployment Rate Drops More Than Forecast as Economy Continues Recovery

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Friday, October 2, 2020:

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported early Friday morning that the economy continues its surprisingly strong recovery from the greatest shutdown in U.S. history. The report, based on two surveys — the household survey and the establishment survey — said, “Improvements in the labor market reflect the continued resumption of economic activity” following the COVID-inspired shutdown.

Specifically, total non-farm payroll employment rose by 661,000 in September, dropping the unemployment rate by half of one percent, to 7.9 percent. Forecasters were expecting a drop to 8.2 percent.

Most of the gains were in leisure and hospitality, retail businesses, healthcare, and in professional and business services. Job recovery in food services and drinking places has totaled nearly four million over the last five months.

This comes on the heels of other reports and surveys earlier this week showing

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Trump Declares National Emergency as China Monopolizes Rare Earth Elements

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Thursday, October 1, 2020:  

The day after debating Joe Biden in his bid for another four years in the White House, President Trump declared a national emergency. It concerns the virtual monopoly the communists running China have gained over an obscure but vitally necessary group of 17 minerals called “rare earth elements,” or REEs. They are used to build a wide range of products, both consumer and military.

There is no known substitute for them, and China controls most of their production.

In his Executive Order, the president said,

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Latest Economic Surveys Show Resilience of U.S. Economy

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Wednesday, September 30, 2020:

The Conference Board reported on Tuesday that its index of consumer confidence jumped in September by the biggest increase in 17 years. The index clocked in at 101.8 for the month, up from 86.3 in August. Economists were expecting a reading of just 89.6.

Inside that index were two indicators driving the increase: how consumers feel about the economy right now (98.5 currently, up from 85.8 in August) and how consumers feel about the next six months (104 currently, up from 86.6 in August).

On Wednesday morning, payroll processor ADP reported that

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Big Banks Are Optimistic About U.S. Economy, for Good Reason

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Monday, September 21, 2020: 

Three of the world’s largest investment banks — Goldman Sachs, Wells Fargo and Deutsche Bank — are optimistic about stocks in the coming months, and for good reasons: a strong housing market, the improved chances for a COVID-19 vaccine in the near future, the increasing likelihood of President Trump’s reelection, a strong GDP number in the third quarter, economic momentum left over from 2019’s amazing performance, and forecasts of the robust recovery extending into 2021.

Goldman Sachs analyst David Kostin told his clients last week to expect the S&P 500 index, currently trading around 3,260, to close the year at 3,600 and at 3,800 by next summer: “Despite the sharp sell-off [in stocks] we remain optimistic about the path of the U.S. equity market in coming months … [the] economic data show a continuing recovery.”

Wells Fargo’s chief investment officer, Kirk Harman, told CNBC on Tuesday,

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New Jersey the Fourth State to Enact “Millionaires” tax

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Friday, September 18, 2020:  

New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy says he doesn’t hold a grudge against anyone making more than a million dollars a year in his state.

It’s just that he needs their money more than they do. It’s their duty to “sacrifice”: “We do not hold any grudge at all against those who have been successful in life. But in this unprecedented time, when so many middle-class families and others have sacrificed so much, now is the time to ensure that the wealthiest among us are also called to sacrifice.”

Murphy made the announcement on Thursday, adding that he expects the two-percent increase — from 8.75% to 10.75% on incomes of a million and up — will raise $390 million this year alone. He’s using his state’s $10 billion shortfall in revenues as an excuse.

He expects the increase to fall on about 16,500 residents, assuming that they stand still for the plucking.

Most are likely to stand still for the shearing, but

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Wall Street Analyst: Stocks to Move Higher, Enhancing Trump’s Reelection Chances

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Wednesday, September 16, 2020:

In a note to his clients on Monday, LPL’s Chief Market Strategist Ryan Detrick said his company has raised its stock market expectations even higher, advising its clients to stay fully invested and enjoy the ride.

He said, “When the S&P 500 [index] has been up five straight months, as it was in April through August, stocks have historically kept going higher.” Historically, he told his clients, the last 26 times the market traded higher for five straight months, it was higher a year later 96 percent of the time.

Furthermore,

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Goldman Sachs Expects 35-percent Growth in U.S. Economy in Third Quarter — Good for Trump

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Monday, September 14, 2020: 

In a note to its clients on Thursday, international investment banking firm Goldman Sachs said it “upgraded” its estimate of the robust rebound of the U.S. economy for the third quarter, adding that the momentum will continue into the fourth quarter and 2021 as well:

We upgraded our near-term growth forecasts based on the much stronger-than-expected August jobs report and the solid summer data more generally….

 

Our forecast of 35 percent is now nearly 14 percentage points above [Wall Street’s] consensus….

 

Looking beyond this quarter, we remain upbeat on growth.… In our view, the combination of a still-very-high personal savings rate, and a likely vaccine, should lead to reaccelerating demand in these sectors.

Others are getting on board. Marko Kolanovic, a quantitative strategist at J.P. Morgan Chase told his clients two weeks ago: “We currently believe that momentum in favor of Trump will continue, while most investors are still positioned for a Biden win.” Accordingly he told his clients to “adjust [their portfolios] for a potential Trump re-election.”

The day after Goldman Sachs issued its upgrade Beacon Policy Advisors analyst Ben Koltun confirmed, explaining why:

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Price Increases at Retail Level Accelerating, Thanks to Massive Money Supply Increase

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Friday, September 11, 2020:

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported on Friday that prices at the retail level in August increased at an annual rate of nearly five percent in August.

Retail prices dropped when the shutdown began and demand for retail items such as gas and services such as restaurants fell like stones. People nearly stopped buying, preferring to stash their “stimulus” checks from the government in savings or use them to pay off credit card debt.

In response, the government, with the help of the Federal Reserve, dumped massive amounts of newly created digital currency into the economy, hoping that the infusion would quickly revive it once the infection risk had passed.

Now that that perceived risk has abated, citizens are coming out of their homes and basements and spending, making up for lost time. They’re buying

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The story of “I, Coke”

Kevin Ashton is a very clever man. He loves to figure out how things work, and he makes a living explaining them to others. His article at medium.com is a take-off of “I, Pencil” written back in 1958 by Leonard Read, which became a best-seller.

Ashton says that a can of Coke costs about 50 cents. But how it got onto his grocery store’s shelf is impossibly complex. It starts with the aluminum can itself:

Each can originated in a small town of 4,000 people on the Murray River in Western Australia called Pinjarra. Pinjarra is the site of the world’s largest bauxite mine. Bauxite is surface mined — basically scraped and dug from the top of the ground.

The bauxite is crushed and washed with hot sodium hydroxide, which separates it into aluminum hydroxide and waste material called red mud. The aluminum hydroxide is cooled, then heated to over a thousand degrees celsius in a kiln, where it becomes aluminum oxide, or alumina.

The alumina is dissolved in a molten substance called cryolite, which is a rare mineral from Greenland, and turned into pure aluminum using electricity in a process called electrolysis.

The pure aluminum sinks to the bottom of the molten cryolite, is drained off and placed in a mold. It cools into the shape of a long cylindrical bar. The bar is transported west again, to the Port of Bunbury, and loaded onto a container ship bound for — in the case of Coke for sale in Los Angeles — Long Beach.

Let me interrupt here. How does this happen? More importantly, how could a government bureaucracy think it could do this better? Think of all the pieces and parts not only of materials but of the decisions that must be made, the discoveries that must be made and developed and refined, the connections that must be built, all to create an aluminum can. And do it at a cost that provides a profit to each provider along the way while producing an end product that’s cheap enough for the consumer to buy.

And Ashton hasn’t even gotten to what’s inside. It’s quite an adventure.

Here’s the secret sauce:

Coca-Cola is made from a syrup produced by the Coca-Cola Company of Atlanta. The main ingredient in the formula used in the United States is a type of sugar substitute called high-fructose corn syrup 55, so named because it is 55 per cent fructose or “fruit sugar”, and 42 per cent glucose or “simple sugar” — the same ratio of fructose to glucose as natural honey.

HFCS is made by grinding wet corn until it becomes cornstarch. The cornstarch is mixed with an enzyme secreted by a rod-shaped bacterium called Bacillus and an enzyme secreted by a mold called Aspergillus. This process creates the glucose. A third enzyme, also derived from bacteria, is then used to turn some of the glucose into fructose.

What incentive would drive anyone to develop such a process? Surely not good will, or altruism, or the prospect of fame or notoriety. I can think of only one: potential for profit.

Next: the coloring. I don’t want to know what this looks like without the coloring:

The second ingredient, caramel coloring, gives the drink its distinctive dark brown color. There are four types of caramel coloring — Coca Cola uses type E150d, which is made by heating sugars with sulfite and ammonia to create bitter brown liquid.

The syrup’s other principal ingredient is phosphoric acid, which adds acidity and is made by diluting burnt phosphorus (made by heating phosphate rock in an arc-furnace) and processing it to remove arsenic.

Thanks for removing the arsenic!

Then there’s the flavoring:

A much smaller proportion of the syrup is flavors. These include vanilla, which is the fruit of a Mexican orchid that has been dried and cured for around three months; cinnamon, the inner bark of a Sri Lankan tree; coca-leaf which comes from South America and is processed in a unique US government authorized factory in New Jersey to remove its addictive stimulant cocaine; and kola nut, a red nut found on a tree which grows in the African Rain Forest (this may be the origin of Coca-Cola’s distinctive red logo).

And then there’s the caffeine. Gotta have that!

The final ingredient is caffeine, a stimulating alkaloid that can be derived from the kola nut, coffee beans and other sources.

He goes on to show what happens next, and what happens after that, and after that, and after that. To an alien observer it looks like a miracle, or madness.

Ashton forgot to mention that the original formula for Coke contained cocaine. So today’s Coke isn’t quite like the original. But the miracle remains.

Atlanta Mayor’s Spat with Street Vendors Goes National

A conservative journalist writing in the Atlanta-Journal-Constitution on Saturday, October 26th, claimed that Atlanta’s mayor blatantly broke the law and when a court demanded he uphold the law instead, he refused. The issue went national when the spat was picked up by the Wall Street Journal on Monday, the day before Atlanta voters were to go to the polls to

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Jobs Reports Show the US Turning into a Part Time Worker Economy

When the two-part employment report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) was issued on Friday, the news was modestly positive: from its business “establishment” data it noted that employment increased by 162,000, a little less than expected but not far from the average of 175,000 new jobs a month that the economy has been generating for the last three months. The estimates for May and June were revised downward slightly but

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Boomers’ Social Security Checks Being Garnished for Unpaid Student Loans

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Tuesday, December 20, 2016:  

Seal of the United States Department of Education

The Government Accountability Office (GAO) issued its report on student loan repayments on Tuesday, revealing that 114,000 Americans age 50 and over had their Social Security checks garnished (the GAO calls them “offsets”), including 38,000 over age 65. In total the government recovered $171 million from this group last year, putting many of them into poverty.

Under the law,

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Job Openings Highest Since 2000, Reflecting Robust Economy

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Tuesday, May 8, 2018: 

The “Job Openings” report released Tuesday by the Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) was nothing short of remarkable: “On the last business day of March, the job openings level increased to a series high of 6.6 million. The series began in December 2000.” Translation: The U.S. economy, as measured by job growth, job openings, and unemployment numbers, is stronger now than at any time in the past 17 years.

Those job openings are in professional and business services, the segment of the economy that facilitates the rest of the economy through technology. Employers are also looking for construction workers (68,000 openings in March) and in transportation, warehousing, and utilities (37,000 openings in March).

Buried in the numbers is another astonishing fact:

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Many of the articles on Light from the Right first appeared on either The New American or the McAlvany Intelligence Advisor.
Copyright © 2021 Bob Adelmann