Entries by Wolf Richter

INFLATION: Each Worker’s Slice of After-Inflation-Income Pie Is Shrinking.

Estimated Reading Time: 2 minutes

A look at per-worker personal income, what’s left of it after inflation. Adjusted for inflation, consumers’ personal income from all sources – from wages, interest, dividends, rental income, unemployment compensation, stimulus checks, Social Security benefits, etc. – so “real” personal income dipped by 0.2% in October from September to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of […]

Stock Market Leverage Spikes, Margin Debt Up 42% YoY. Fed Warns about High Leverage Ratio of “Younger Retail Investors”

Estimated Reading Time: 2 minutes

“Potentially Destabilizing Outcome could emerge if elevated risk appetite among retail investors retreats rapidly.” But what the heck. Only part of the leverage in the stock market is tracked and disclosed on a monthly basis. Much of the leverage happens in the shadows, including Securities Based Lending (SBA) that banks may or may not disclose […]

Americans Blow Off Fed Propaganda Inflation is “Temporary”

Estimated Reading Time: 2 minutes

Americans, as they struggle with the meaning of the Fed’s terms “transitory” and “temporary,” expect that inflation one year from now will rise to 5.7%, the 12th month in a row of relentless increases, the highest in the data going back to 2013, creating a beautiful record spike (red line), according to the New York […]

Fed’s Lowest Lowball Inflation Measure Hits Another 30-Year High as Reckless Money-Printing Continues

Estimated Reading Time: 2 minutes

While the Fed is still printing $120 billion a month and repressing short-term rates to near 0% in the most monstrously overstimulated economy. The lowest lowball inflation measure that the US government releases, the PCE price index without food and energy rose by 3.64% in September, compared to a year ago, the hottest inflation reading since May […]

Social Security COLA for 2022 Biggest since 1982, But Still Won’t Cover Actual Cost of Living Increases for Many Retirees

Estimated Reading Time: 2 minutes

For retirees, 2021 was a nasty year: Red hot inflation and a stingy COLA. In 2022, they might fall behind more slowly.   Among the red-hot inflation data released today was the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W), which is used to calculate the Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) for Social […]

My “Wealth Effect Monitor” for the Money-Printer Economy: Holy Moly, October Update

Estimated Reading Time: 2 minutes

Editor’s Note: It is amusing, if not tragic, that those who complain the most about “inequality”, pursue monetary, fiscal, and tax policies, that make it much worse for the poor.  Asset price inflation favors obviously those with the means to own assets: stocks, bonds, and real estate. While inflation is a tax on all of […]

The Most Splendid Housing Bubbles in America: Holy Cow, September Update

Estimated Reading Time: 2 minutes

Even the Fed is getting antsy about this raging mania house-price inflation. Housing Bubble 1 is starting to look cute in comparison. House prices spiked 19.7% from a year ago, the biggest year-over-year increase in the data going back to 1987, according to the National Case-Shiller Home Price Index today. But the national index of this raging […]

China’s Crackdown on Debt, Tech & Evergrande Sends Frazzled Wall Street Titans to China

Estimated Reading Time: 2 minutes

The property sector and its debts are possibly the biggest financial mess in China’s history. The crackdowns by Chinese authorities on some of the biggest hype-and-hoopla industries have sent investors heading for the exits. There is a crackdown on debt to keep the financial system from imploding. There’s a crackdown on property speculation to tamp […]

Bank of Japan Ends its Massive QE that Started When Abenomics Became Economic Religion of Japan

Estimated Reading Time: 2 minutes

One of the largest central banks ends QE. End of an era for Japan: Large-scale money printing was one of the three official legs of Abenomics. In terms of the absolute mountain of assets the Bank of Japan purchased over the years, it is one of the top three QE monsters, along with the Fed […]

The Monstrous Flow of Free Money and the Shortages

Estimated Reading Time: 3 minutes

Free money destroyed the pricing mechanism, and demand has soared despite much higher prices. The shortages are not at Costco or Safeway, though they too might run out of a few weird items here and there. But other retailers are complaining about them, including apparel retailers and shoe retailers – yup, it took five weeks […]