The Real Story on the US Economy: Manufacturing Sales

US manufacturing sales on a seasonally-adjusted basis have fallen for 17 consecutive months and are now down more than 8% below the July 2014 peak. December 2016 manufacturing sales were at the same level as November 2011, obviously a story of stagnation rather than the economic recovery the Fed keeps yammering about. Total sales in 2015 were $258 billion less than 2014–$5.738 trillion vs. $5.996 trillion. That’s despite record car sales in 2015. And what’s worse, inventory at the manufacturing level continues to pile up despite declining production. Continue reading “The Real Story on the US Economy: Manufacturing Sales”

Wider Credit Spreads Favor Gold

Gold is the ultimate safe haven because it is no one else’s obligation. It isn’t issued or backed by any government, central bank or corporation so the value of the gold you own is completely independent of anyone else’s performance or lack of it. When you own a bond, its value is dependent on the creditworthiness of the issuer. You don’t really own an asset, you own their obligation to you. When you own a stock, the value is dependent on corporate performance and whether or not management meets its obligations to you as a shareholder. Stocks aren’t assets, they are paper promises.

Continue reading “Wider Credit Spreads Favor Gold”