The University of Texas at Arlington
HOME PAGE—Greg Feigel
c/o Department of Finance & Real Estate, College of Business Administration
Dept. main address:
UTA Box 19449, Business Building, 4th Floor, Room 434
701 S. West Street
Arlington, TX 76019
Dept. main telephone number: (817) 272-3705
OFFICE HOURS By appointment—generally the best time is immediately after a scheduled lecture.
INFORMATION and LINKS to PREVIOUS SEMESTERS This information is generally removed within a week of grade submissions. Contact me directly by email should you have any questions.
GENERAL POLICIES You are expected to know university policies regarding academic honesty and integrity, as well as all other rules and regulations regarding behavior and comportment.
I use technology tools extensively (BlackBoard for collaboration and contact, MS Office
Suite—specifically Excel—in and out of class, etc.). You should have some broad
familiarity with these tools. See course content details.
COURSES THIS SEMESTER The homepages for courses scheduled for this semester can be accessed by clicking on the links below. Links for courses from previous semesters are disabled after grades are issued.
GENERAL INFORMATION AND SERVICES The following are provided to aid in your general understanding of the economy and the job market:
> THE MARKET Updated sporadically —THIS IS AN ONGOING SNAPSHOT OF THE DFW FINANCE & ACCOUNTING JOB MARKET (high-end jobs). Sources include trade association networks, RSS feeds, etc.
> THE YIELD CURVE Updated monthly—THIS IS A GRAPHIC IDENTIFYING PATTERNS IN THE YIELD CURVE based on Wall Street Journal reporting of the ‘Treasury Bonds, Notes and Bills’ market. THIS SPREADSHEET HAS AN EMBEDDED MACRO—ACCEPT IT TO VIEW THE GRAPH.
> RELEVANT CURRENT EVENTS Updated regularly—these are important events occurring this school year (generally I list only those things that are unusual and occur once every 4-5 years or longer):
9/11/14-Financial Times online. Buffer stocks of wheat, feed grains and rice will rise in 2015 to 24.7% of annual
Consumption, per the UN Food and Agriculture Organization. That would be the highest since 2003 and up more than 6 percentage points from lows during the food crisis in 2007-08, when soaring prices triggered riots in more than 30 countries.
9/3/14-WSJ-B.1. The average age of industrial equipment in the U.S. has risen above 10 years, the highest since
1938, on reduced domestic investment, according to economists at Morgan Stanley .
8/28/14-WSJ Online. Bank loan and lease balances rose to $8.11 trillion, a 2.3% increase over the first quarter
of 2014 and a record, and the largest Q-toQ jump since the end of 2007. Underlying FDIC data implies a decline in non-money center bank loans, which are 12% of total.
8/27/14-WSJ-A.1. July durable goods orders rose to a record $300.1B but fell .8% without Boeing orders.
8/21/14-WSJ Online. Corp. public bond offerings are approaching a record for the 3rd straight year, at $1T through
8/21/14 is the fastest pace on record, per Dealogic.
8/17/14-WSJ Online. Small business loans as % of total, at 24% are at a record low per the FDIC and are down 14%
8/14/14-WSJ Online. German 10-year rates fell below 1% “...for the first time in history.”
8/13/14 Financial Times Online. The Euro-based overnight rate fell to a record low 0.01% as the Ukrainian
Exchange rate to the $ hit a record low (13 hryvnia –per-$), along with 300 year low Spanish (2.58%, 10-year), Italian (2.7%, 10-year) and German interest rates (1% 10-year).
8/12/14-WSJ Online. U.S. employers had 4.7MM job openings at the end of June, per the Labor Department said,
the highest number of openings since February 2001.
8/6/14-WSJ-A.1. 76% of Americans believe the next generation will have it worse, a record (from 1994).
7/8/14-Financial Times Online. The amount of so-called short interest in the benchmark US S&P 500 index is
hovering around 2 per cent of total shares in the index, close to the lowest level since Markit began collecting the data in 2006. In the European Stoxx 600 index, the level is similar at just over 2 per cent, while short interest in the UK FTSE All-Share index stands at less than 1 per cent.
6/25/14-WSJ Online. 1QGDP tfell 2.9% SA, the fastest rate of decline since the recession, and was the largest drop
recorded since the end of World War II that wasn't part of a recession.
6/18/14-WSJ Online. 1Q US company dividends and buybacks hit a record $241.2B vs. previous record $233.2B
in 2007, according to S&P Dow Jones Indices .
6/10/14-Financial Times Online. Hostile takeover bids reached a 14 year high according to the Financial Times.
6/9/14-WSJ Online. CBOE's Volatility Index is down 5.6% to 11.03 in recent trading on Friday, on pace for its
lowest finish since it closed at 10.58 on Feb. 23, 2007
6/8/14-Reuters Online. The Chinese May trade surplus, at $35.9B was a 5-year high.
6/5/14-WSJ-C.1. According to Credit Suisse Trading Strategy, trading volume on US exchanges, at 5.7B shares
per day is the lowest since October 2007. The peak was ~12.1B shares in March 2009.
5/30/14-Bloomberg Online. Japan’s industrial production and household spending fell and inflation surged to a
23-year high on a tax rise
5/29/13-WSJ Online. Home-equity lines of credit, or Helocs, and home-equity loans jumped 8% in 1Q from a
year earlier, industry newsletter Inside Mortgage Finance said. The $13 billion extended was the most for the start of a year since 2009, but below the record $113B in 2006.
5/29/13-WSJ Online. U.K. consumer confidence reached its highest level in more than 9 years, according
to GfK, whose measure of consumer confidence has risen by 27 points, the largest gain over a sustained period since the seven months to December 1977
5/16/14-WSJ Online. Initial claims for unemployment benefits fell by 24,000 to a seasonally adjusted 297K
in the week ended May 10 per the Labor Department, the lowest rate since May 2007.
4/24/14-WSJ Online. Lenders originated $235 billion in mortgage loans during the January-March quarter, the
lowest in 14 years, down 58% v. 1Q 2013 and down 23% from 4Q 2013, according to Inside Mortgage Finance.
4/14/14-Reuters Online. U.S. venture funds raised $8.9 billion in the first quarter, the most in six years and
almost double 1Q 2013. according to the National Venture Capital Association, based on Thomson Reuters data. The previous high quarter was $10.4B in 4Q 2007.
- Venture-capital research firm CB Insights reported last week that investments by venture-capital firms into start-ups hit $9.99 billion last quarter, more than any quarter since 2001.
4/10/14-WSJ Online. Initial claims for jobless benefits fell 32,000 to a seasonally adjusted 300,000 in the week
ended April 5. That was the largest decline in claims since late 2012, pushing the overall level down to lows last seen in May 2007.
4/9/14-WSJ Online. Mortgage originations in February fell to their lowest level in at least 14 years due to the
months-long plunge in refinancing activity and weak demand for loans to purchase new homes, per Black Knight Financial Services.
- The Mortgage Bankers Association, meanwhile, reported on Wednesday that the share of mortgage applications for refinances hit their lowest level since July 2009.
3/27/14-St. Louis FED. M2 and MZM money velocity at 1.565 and 1.406 are at the lowest levels in history.
3/2/14-Financial Times Online. Margin debt hit a record $451bn on the NYSE, a rise of more than 20 per cent
over the past year and above 2007’s peak of $381bn. Five years ago it hit a low of $173bn.
2/27/14-Financial Times Online. French unemployment hit a record 11% and is expected to remain at that level
2/26/14-WSJ Online. New single-family home sales in January rose 9.6% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of
468,000 from a month earlier, reaching their highest level since July 2008, per the Commerce Department. New-home sales peaked in July 2005, when they hit an annual pace of nearly 1.4 million. Sales hit a low of 270,000 in February 2011.
- US home prices rose at the fastest rate since 2005. up 11.3% in 4Q vs. 2012. At that level the prices are consistent with 2004 prices and roughly 21% below peak prices in 2006.
2/19/14-WSJ-A.1. US household debt rose last Q to $11.521T, the highest level in 6 years, mainly due to student
- Student Loan debt rose to $1.08T, the highest on record.
2/12/14-WSJ.B.1. US auto inventories rose to the highest level since August 2009.
2/6/14-WSJ Online. The number of US expatriations (renouncement of citizenship or green cards) set a record
in 2013. according to the Dept. of the Treasury, up 50% compared with the prior 2011 record.
1/23/14-WSJ Online. The Turkish lira hit a record low vs. the $, at 2.3045 lira. The Russian ruble hit a 5-year low
at 39.75. The $ rose above 11 South African rand for the first time since October 2008.
- Financial Times Online. US CAPEX in the 12 months ending in Oct. 2014 is forecasted to grow at 1.2%, the lowest level since 2009, according to Factset.
1/10/14-WSJ Online. According to the DOL, the share of Americans who are either working or looking for work
fell to 62.8% in December, returning to the 35-year low it touched in October 2013.
1/7/14-WSJ-C.10. China’s auction of 5-year government bonds hit a 16 year high, 4.47%.
- WSJ Online. U.S. exports rose by 0.9% to a seasonally adjusted $194.86 billion in November from a month earlier, the Commerce Department said Tuesday, the highest level on record. The trade gap narrowed to $34.25 billion from $39.33 billion in the prior month. November's deficit was the smallest since October 2009.
1/4/14-WSJ.A.1. US cattle prices rose to a record $1.363 per lb. for live cattle on the CME.
- A.7 UK housing prices rose in 2013 at the fastest year-on-year rate in 3.5 years, up 8.4%, to the
highest level in in over 5 years.
1/3/14-WSJ Online. Lending to the private sector in the euro zone plunged in November at the sharpest annual
rate since records began more than 20 years ago, down 2.3%, data from the European Central Bank showed.
- Negative earnings guidance for 4Q13 hit a record (since 2006) with only 13 companies (about 8%), per
Factset, reporting gains.
12/31/13-WSJ Online. The DJIA posted 52 records on its way to 16,576.66, a record and a 27% gain in 2013, the
best since 1995. The S&P 500 closed up 30% for 2013 to 1,848.36, the highest since 1997. Japan's Nikei
Stock Average surged 57% to 1,629.31 for its biggest gain since 1972.
- The Barclays U.S. Aggregate Bond Index lost 2%, its first decline since 1999.
12/31/13-WSJ Online. companies sold a record $1.111 trillion of bonds in the U.S. in 2013 per Dealogic. The
last record was 2012 at $1.053T. Records began 1995.
12/25/13-WSJ Online. According to the Commerce Department, October and November new home sates were
the two strongest months of new-home sales since mid-2008
12/24/13-WSJ-A.1,C.1. 3Q13 S&P500 stock buy-backs hit $128.2B, the highest since 2007 (record $589.1B).
Stock dividends and buybacks at $207B is also the highest in 6 years.
12/3/13-WSJ Online. The number of US banks at the end of 3Q2013, at 6,891, is the lowest since 1880.
12/2/13-WSJ-A.1. Per the National Retail Federation, Thanksgiving weekend sales fell 2.7% to $57.4B, the
first drop in 7 years.
11/29/13-Financial Times Online. European year-to-date collateralized bond sales at $166B were the lowest
since 1996, per Dealogic.
- Global collateralized bond sales, same period, at $193.1B were the lowest since 2002.
11/28/13-WSJ Online. The latest Investors Intelligence poll of newsletter writers puts the percentage of
bears at 14.4%, the lowest since 1987.
- Margin debt as a % of GDP is nearing the historical peak of March 2000.
11/27/13-WSJ-A.1. Housing permits surged to the highest level in 5 years (June 2008) on increases in
multifamily permits, according to the Commerce Department.
-A.1. US farm income is on track for the highest level in 40 years according to the USDA, rising
15.1% to $131B, owing to bumper crops of corn and soybeans.
11/26/13-WSJ Online. According to Dealogic, the M&A acquisition premium at 19% is the lowest on record
(records began 1995), compared to the historic average 30%.
11/26/13-Financial Times Online. Per Preqin, private equity cash holdings at $789B are the highest since 2008.
11/21/13-WSJ Online. The Senate ended the filibuster rule on Presidential appointments, changing rules in
effect since 1789.
11/14/13-WSJ-C.4. The US Treasury reported that US taxpayers renouncing their citizenship and leaving the
country, through 3Q, has already broken the previous yearly record set in 2011.
11/10/13-Financial Times Online. US 2013 IPO volume at $51.8B through October is the highest level since
2000, according to Dealogic. However, most of the volume appears to be private equity exits and tech
11/4/13-WSJ-A.1. US-listed IPOs in October at $12.7B were the highest since 2007.
10/1/13-WSJ-C.4. Debt issues by US investment-grade companies hit a record $146B in September.
9/19/13-WSJ Online. Existing-home sales rose in August to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.48MM per
the National Association of Realtors, the best month since February 2007
9/18/13-WSJ Online. Mortgage lenders originated nearly 9.8MMn mortgages in 2012, up 38% from 7.1MM in
2011 (a 16-year low), a 5-year high, but well below the peak years of 2000-2009, per the FED
9/6/13-WSJ Online. The US labor participation rate fell to 63.2%, the lowest since 1978, per the Labor Dept.
9/5/13-WSJ-A.1, C.10. US car sales in August rose to 1.5MM units, the highest since December 2007.
8/27/13-WSJ Online. The Turkish lira hit all-time lows vs. the $ which surged past 2.03 lira for the first time,
while the euro rose to a record high of 2.7163 lira
- The Indian rupee fell to a fresh record low of 66.00 to the $, “...causing a selloff in local stocks…).
8/20/13-WSJ-C.4. The Brazilian Real hit a new low against the $, breaking 2.41 per $.
8/15/13-WSJ Online. Initial jobless claims for the week ended 8/10 were 320K, the lowest since 10/2007 per
the Labor Department.
8/14/13-WSJ Online. Total household debt, including mortgages, credit cards and auto loans, fell by $78B in 2Q to
$11.15T, the lowest level since 2006, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. The amount of bills 30 or more days late fell by $3.3 billion during the quarter, also reaching the lowest level in 7 years.
8/8/13-WSJ Online. The Mortgage Bankers Association said 5.9% of mortgages on one-to-four-unit homes were
90 days or longer past due or in the foreclosure process at the end of the June, representing around
2.8MM households, down from a peak of 4.5MM and the lowest in 5 years. The 2Q figure was down from
7.3% one year earlier and a high of 9.7% in late 2009.
8/1/13-Bloomberg Online. Claims for jobless benefits for the week of July 27 fell to the lowest level in more
than 5 years to 326K claims, according to the Department of Labor.
7/26/13-WSJ Online. The Thomson-Reuters/University of Mich. final July consumer sentiment index increased to
85.1, the highest reading since July 2007.
7/24/13-WSJ Online. New-home sales increased 8.3% in June to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 497K, per
the Commerce Department, the highest level since May 2008. (New-home sales peaked in July 2005, at
an annual pace of nearly 1.4MM, and bottomed out in February 2011 with a rate of only 270,000.
7/18/13-WSJ Online. Detroit filed for bankruptcy, at $18.5B negative the largest in US history.
7/3/13-WSJ-A.1. US auto sales rose at the highest rate in 5 years in June to 1.4MM units, and a projected rate of
15.6MM annual units, also the highest since 2007.
6/27/13-WSJ Online. The 30-year fixed mortgage rate posted its largest weekly percentage increase in more
than 25 years (1987), according to Freddie Mac
6/26/13-WSJ-A.1. New home sales rose 2.1% in May to a SA 476K rate, the highest since 7/2008.
- The Case-Shiller Index of home prices rose 12.1% in April vs. prior year, the largest gain since 4/2006.
- Per the Natl. Assn. of Realtors, May sales of pre-owned homes rose to 5.2MM units, the highest since
6/7/13-WSJ Online. Per the FED, U.S. nonfinancial corporations held $1.78 trillion in cash and other liquid
assets in 1Q13, a record.
6/1/13-WSJ-A.9. Euro-zone unemployment hit 12.2% in April, the highest since records began (1995), with
- WSJ-A.2. April Core Inflation (excluding food and energy) ws 1.1% in April , the lowest on record
5/29/13-WSJ-A.1. Home prices in 1Q rose at the highest rate in 7 years (10.2% vs. prior year), according to the
S&P / Case-Shiller Index.
5/28/13-WSJ Online. The Conference Board index of consumer confidence increased to 76.2 in May from a
revised 69.0 in April, putting the index at its highest since February 2008.
5/24/13-WSJ-A.1. The average new home price hit $330.8K in April, a record, per the Commerce Dept.
5/17/13-WSJ Online. The Thomson-Reuters/University of Michigan early-May consumer sentiment index
jumped to 83.7 from 76.4 at the end of April and a preliminary April reading of 72.3, a 6-year high.
5/10/13-WSJ-A.1 Home prices in urban areas rose in 1Q to the highest rate in 7 years, per the
National Assn. of Realtors, to a median price of $176.6K.
5/9/13-WSJ-C.1 According to Barclays, junk debt fell to 4.97%, the lowest on record (1983).
5/2/13-WSJ Online. Initial jobless claims decreased by 18K to a seasonally adjusted 324,000 in the week
ended April 27, the Labor Department said Thursday—the lowest level for claims since January 2008
4/30/13-WSJ Online. The Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller home-price index rose 9.3% in Feb., the highest in
4/27/13-WSJ-B.5 According to Barclays, junk debt fell to 5.39%, the lowest on record (1983).
4/25/13-WSJ Online. The jobless rate in Spain rose sharply to 27.2% of the workforce in 1Q13, the highest
level since records began in the 1970s. In France, the number of registered job seekers who are
fully unemployed rose to more than 3.2 million, topping a previous record set in 1997
4/16/13-FT Online. Gold dropped to a 2-year low, $1,355.80 a troy oz.—the sharpest 2-day drop since 1983.
4/3/13-Financial Times Online. Joblessness in the euro area stayed at a record 12%, Feb. 2013. up from a
year-ago 10.9%, according to Eurostat Unemployed at 19.7MM is up 1.78MM from a year ago.
- WSJ-p.C.1. The Barclays US Aggregate bond Index (the “Agg” - the most followed bond index)
lost .12% in 1Q13, the first negative return since 2006.
3/29/13-Financial Times Online. The USDA reported that corn acres planted, at 97.3M acres, is the highest
3/27/13-WSJ Online. Foreign direct investment in the US rose to $3.1T in 2012, a record (1976 records
began), per Commerce Department.
3/26/13-WSJ Online. U.S. home prices in January registering the biggest increase since the summer of
2006, up 8.1%, according to Standard & Poor's Case-Shiller home-price indexes
2/26/13-Financial Times Online. Sales of single-family new homes in the US rose in January by 15.6% to a
seasonally adjusted annual rate of 437K, the highest level since July 2008 and home prices ended
2012 with the biggest annual gain in more than 6 years according to the Commerce Dept. The
number of homes for sale at the end of January was ~150K, a supply of 4.1 months at current sales
rates, the lowest since March 2005. Buy prices remain about 29 per cent below the 2006 peak.
2/22/13-WSJ Online. The number of homes listed for sale in January at 1.74MM is the lowest since Dec.
1999, according to the Natl. Assn. of Realtors.
2/24/13-WSJ Online. The American Institute of Architects said Wednesday that its Architecture Billings Index
rose to 54.2 in January, the highest level since November 2007, from 51.2 in December. The index
of new project inquiries rose to 63.2 in the three months to end-January vs. previous 57.9.
1/30/13-WSJ-A.1. November home prices rose 5.5%, the largest increase since August 2006 according to
1/24/13-WSJ Online. Initial jobless claims fell by 5K to a seasonally adjusted 330K in the week ended Jan.
19, the lowest level since Jan. 2008, per the Labor Department
1/21/13-WSJ Online. The U.K.'s FTSE 100 index gained 0.4% to 6180.98—its 3rd consecutive gain and
highest close since May 22, 2008.
1/19/13-WSJ Online. According to the American Petroleum Institute U.S. oil production grew more in
2012 than in any year in the history of the domestic industry, which began in 1859, and is set to
surge even more in 2013. Daily crude output averaged 6.4MM barrels a day last year, up a record
779K barrels a day from 2011 and hitting a 15-year high US oil demand fell to a 16-year low, and
total oil imports for the year fell by 6.9%, to a 15-year low
1/11/13-WSJ Online. The U.S. trade deficit in Nov., excluding petroleum products, increased 15.8% to
$48.73B, the highest in 5 years. The inflation-adjusted deficit, at $51.91B, also hit a 5-year high.
1/9/13-Financial Times Online. The VIX dropped to 13.2, its lowest level in 5 1/2 years.
1/8/12-WSJ Online. Eurozone unemployment in Nov. 2012 hit a new record, 18.82MM people, 11.8%.
1/6/13-WSJ Online. Live cattle for Feb. delivery at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange reached an all-time
closing high of $1.3385 a pound Thursday, eclipsing the previous record set last March
12/31/12-WSJ-C.8. Lumber futures hit an 8-year high, $392.80 per 1,000 board feet.
12/30/12-Financial Times Online. Global debt issuance by banks for 2012 at $1.26T is the lowest since
2002, per Dealogic.
12/24/12-WSJ-A.1,A.3. 3Q consumer debt payments at 10.6% of after-tax income is the lowest since
1983, per the Federal Reserve.
12/21/12-WSJ-A.1,A.3. 3Q GDP grew at a 3.1% rate
12/20/12-Financial Times Online. World corporate debt issues hit a record in 2012 as the yield on the
Barclays US High-Yield Index, which moves inversely to prices, hit an all-time low of 6.07%. Per
Dealogic, corporate bond issuance was a record $1.71T in 2012 beating the 2009 record and up
46% per cent from 2011.
12/19/12-WSJ Online. The National Association of Home Builders confidence index for single family homes,
at 47, is the 8th consecutive increase and a 6-year high. An index of 50 is considered good.
12/18/12-WSJ-C.2. According to Equity Research Desk, 3Q share trading on US exchanges was 5.9B aver-
age per day, the lowest in 5 years.
12/11/12-WSJ-C.4. 2012 corporate debt issues at $1.025T set a new record even before end-of-year.
12/5/12-WSJ-B.2. US oil output in Sept. near a 15-year high.
12/2/12-Financial Times Online. Wholesale grain prices in the UK reached record levels, and the country
is expected to be a net importer at the highest level in 32 years.
11/30/12-WSJ-A.1. US birth rates have fallen to record low levels.
11/28/12 WSJ-C.4. The China stock market (Shanghai) closed at 1991.17, the lowest since 1/23/2009.
11/16/12-WSJ-C.2. US mortgage rates fell to new record lows, according to Freddie Mac, 30-year fixed:
3.34%, 15-year fixed: 2.65%.
11/19/12 WSJ Online. According to the National Association of Realtors, existing home sales were up in
October for the 16th straight month, and the inventory of existing homes for sale fell to 2.14 MM,
the lowest level since December 2002, a 5.4-month supply at current sales and the lowest since
- U.S. home builders' confidence rose for the 7th consecutive month in November to its highest
level in 6½ years, the National Association of Home Builders said Monday.
11/7/12 WSJ-A.21. Eurozone unemployment rose to a record 11.6% in October.
10/31/12 WSJ Online. Unemployment in the Eurozone hit 11.5% in August, a record (tracking began
in 1995), or 18.49MM people. Youth unemployment at 23.3% was also a record.
10/26/12 WSJ Online. Unemployment in Spain hit a record 25.02% in 3Q12.
- WSJ A.10. The Euro-based Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis (“CPB”) said
world trade volume declined .4% in July, the third straight drop and the longest down streak
Since Nov. 2008.
10/22/12 Natl. Review. A Congressional Research Service report shows that means-tested welfare
spending in the US hit a record $927.3B in 2011, a record and up 30% since 2008 and on
a pace to exceed $1T in 2012.
10/18/12-WSJ-A.1. US violent crime rose 18% in 2011, the first increase in nearly 20 years.
10/17/12 WSJ Online. Residential construction in September, at 872,000 units, is the highest since
10/13/12 WSJ-A.3. The Thompson/Reuters/Univ. of Michigan index of consumer confidence rose in early
October to 83.1, the highest since September 20007.
- B.4. The Chinese Yuan-to-$ rate, at 6.2640 per $, is the highest since 1994.
10/11/12 Reuters. September was the driest in 118 years of U.S. record keeping for North Dakota, South
Dakota and Montana and was the 3rd driest September for Nebraska and Oregon, said Mark
Svoboda, a climatologist with the University of Nebraska's National Drought Mitigation Center.
10/10/12 WSJ,B.1. Corporate issues of 30-year investment grade debt at $91.9B 2012 YTD is higher than
any full year since 1995, per Dealogic.
10/9/12 NYT Online. For the first time since researchers began tracking the religious identity of Americans,
fewer than half said they were Protestants, a steep decline from 40 years ago when Protestant
churches claimed the loyalty of more than two-thirds of the population. This according to
the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life. 20% of Americans say they are atheist or agnostic,
a significant jump from 15%, 5 years ago.
10/6/12 WSJ-A.1. US Sept. unemployment rate at 7.8% was lowest since 1/2009. The ‘participa-
tion rate’, at 63.6%, remains at a 30-year low for all of 2012.
10/3/12 WSJ-A.1, B.2. US auto sales hit a 4-year high in Sept., at a 14.94MM annualized rate.
10/4/12 WSJ-A.1, 1.10. The US fertility rate fell to the lowest rate on record (from 1920) to
6.3%, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
10/3/12 WSJ-A.1, B.2. According to Autodata Corp, sales of cars in the US rose to an annual
rate of 14.94MM vehicles, the highest since 3/2008.
10/1/12. WSJ.C.9. According to S&P LCD, Texas Instruments and Unilever recently sold
3-year bonds at a record low .45%.
9/26/12. WSJ-A.1, A.4. Home prices rose at the strongest year-to-year gain in the year
ended July 31, up 5.9% and the greatest change since 2005 (per Case-Shiller).
- Consumer spending increased last year by 3.3%, the fastest rate since 2006 per
the Labor Dept. Spending on food at $6458 per person was the highest since 1984.
9/26/12. McClatchy. National SAT reading scores fell to 496, the lowest in 40 years, the
writing score was the lowest on record at 488 (since 2006).
9/19/12. WSJ-A.1, A.4. Mortgage loans fell to a 16-year low in 2011, 7.1MM vs. 6.2MM in
1995, according to the FED. This is 64% below the peak reached in 2006.
9/13/12. WSJ-A.1. US household income fell to $50,054, the lowest level since 1995 per the
9/6/12. WSJ Online. The NASDAQ hit 3135.81, its highest level since November 2000.
9/4/12. WSJ Online. Eurozone unemployed reached a record 18MM, or 11.3%.
- The USDA reported the nations cattle herd shrunk to the lowest level in 60 years as
prices on the April live cattle futures rose to a record $1.1807/lb.
8/30/12. WSJ Online. Soybean futures closed at a record $17.7025 a bushel on the CBOT, up
48% this year.
8/29/12. Reuters Online. Private sector deposits at Spanish banks fell by almost 5% in
July, the biggest monthly drop since the data began in 1997, according to the ECB.
8/28/12. WSJ-A.11. Spanish unemployment in 2Q at a record, slightly under 25%.
8/24/12. WSJ Online. The Census bureau reports the inventory of new homes available for
sale fell to 142K units, the lowest level recorded records began in 1963.
8/23/12. WSJ Online. WSJ Online. The Federal Housing Finance Assoc. reported 2Q home
prices rose 1.8%, the highest quarterly jump since 4Q 2005.
8/21/12. WSJ Online. Corn rose to a record $8.3125 per bushel on forecasts of the lowest harvest in 6
8/15/12. WSJ Online. The National Association of Home Builders housing market index rose
two points to 37 this month, the highest level since February 2007
8/13/12. WSJ Online. The value of auto loans outstanding at 2Q hit $725B, per Experian,
5.7% above a year ago and the highest level since 1Q09.
8/10/12. WSJ-A.7. Greek unemployment in May hit a record 23.1%.
8/11/12. NYT. The US slashed its estimate of the annual corn crop by 15.5% to its lowest
level since 1995
8/7/12. WSJ Online. Home prices rose by their largest % in at least 7 years during 2Q, up
6% from 1Q, according to CoreLogic Inc., a Santa Ana, Calif., data firm. Separately,
Freddie Mac, which uses a different methodology, said home prices during 2Q
jumped by 4.8% from the previous quarter, the largest jump since 2004
8/1/12. WSJ Online. The Energy Information Administration said in its annual report that
proven reserves of crude oil jumped by 13% in 2010, the highest % since 1977.
The EIA estimates 25.2bbl crude reserves vs. 7bbl consumption, and 318tcuft of
gas vs. 24tcuft consumption.
7/27/12. WSJ-C.4. 7-year treasuries sold at auction at a record low, .954%.
7/26/12. WSJ-A.1, C.4. Treasures hit a record low on the 10-year note, 1.393%.
7/24/12. WSJ-A.1, A.2, C.1. The yield on 30-year treasuries hit a record low, 2.479%
- U.S. home prices 2Q rose from the year-ago period for the first time since 2007, up
.2%, according to Zillow. Also, prices climbed 2.1% from the 1Q to 2Q, the largest
such gain since the end of 2005.
7/19/12. WSJ-A.1,C.4. US corn and soybean prices hit records on drought fears, $7.95 per
bu and $16.835 per bu, respectively.
7/17/12. WSJ-A.1., A.4. The current drought in the US is the widest since 1956, per NOAA.
7/12/12. WSJ Online. The US sold 10-year Treasury notes at a record low yield of 1.459%.
7/11/12. WSJ Online. Revolving consumer credit (includes mostly credit cards), jumped 11.2%
to $870.20B in June –the biggest % rise since November 2007, according to the FED.
7/5/12. WSJ Online and p.A.1, A.3 print. Apartment rents increased in all 82 markets
tracked by Reis Inc., a real estate data firm. Average rents are now at record levels
in 74 markets. The nation's vacancy rate fell during the quarter to 4.7%, its lowest
level since the end of 2001
7/2/12. WSJ Online. Eurozone unemployment rate rose to a record high in May, according
to Markit Economics. Records began 1/95. Total unemployed 17.56MM.
- The Institute for Supply Management new orders index fell in May at its fastest pace
in more than a decade—dropping from 60.1 to 47.8.
6/22/12. WSJ.C.12. The Indian rupee fell to an all-time low vs. the $, 56.55 rupees per $.
6/18/12. WSJ Online. The National Association of Home Builders housing market index at
29 this month, was up a point from a month earlier and the highest level since
May 2007. May’s reading was revised downward by a point to 28.
- Data from Spain's central bank showed the country's lenders have the highest level
of bad loans on their books in 18 years.
6/14/12. WSJ Online. Spain’s 10-year bond traded at 6.96%, the highest rate ever in the
Euro era, as housing prices there declined 12.6% annualized in 1Q after falling
11.2% in 4Q11 and by 7.4% in 3Q11.
6/10/12. WSJ Online. U.S. oil output in 1Q 2012 rose 12% from a year earlier to 6MM
barrels a day for the first time in 13 years
6/1/12. WSJ Online. Eurozone unemployment hit 11%, the highest since Jan. 1995 when
the currency union was formed.
- WSJ Online. 10-year yield dropped below 1.5% for the first time ever,
reaching as low as 1.437%. The 30-year bond's yield touched as low as 2.508%,
nearly breaking the 2.505% record low set in December 2008 after the collapse of
Lehman Brothers sent investors scrambling for shelter.
5/30/12. WSJ Online. German 10-year bond yields dropped to 1.34% in market trading,
a record low.
- The benchmark 10-year U.S. Treasury yield sank to an all-time low of 1.659%
as fears about the euro-zone debt crisis intensified.
5/14/12. WSJ Online. German 10-year bond yields dropped to 1.472% in market trading,
a record low.
5/10/12. Financial Times Online. German 10-year bond yields dropped to 1.49%, and
UK long-term debt dropped to 1.88% – the lowest level for benchmark bonds since
the Bank of England started collecting data in 1703.
- The US sold bonds at record low yields for 10-year bonds at 1.85%.
- Spanish yields rose to euro-era highs of 6.70% (since 12/16/1995).
5/8/12. WSJ-C.4. High-grade corporate bond yields hit a record low yield (since 1973)
of 3.25% on the Barclays US Investment-Grade Index
5/5/12. WSJ-A.14. Per the Labor Department, the April civilian labor participation rate
at 63.6% is the lowest since December 1981.
5/4/12. Financial Times Online. US mortgage rates hit a record low with thirty-year
fixed rate at 3.84%
4/30/12. WSJ Online. The home-ownership rate fell in 1Q to the lowest level in 15 years
due to foreclosures and the weak economic recovery, according to the Census
4/2//12. WSJ-A.1. Spain (the 12th largest world economy) hit an 18-year high
Unemployment rate of 24.4%.
4/19/12. WSJ-A.1,C.3 Delinquent loans in Spain at 8.16%f hit a 17-year high.
- WSJ Online. Total hedge-fund assets surged to $2.13T at the end of 1Q beating
the previous high of $2.04T, set in 2011, according to Hedge Fund Research Inc.
4/12/12-WSJ-A.1,C.4. Natural gas closed on the NYMERC at $1.984 per mbtu, the lowest
close since Jan. 2002 and down 52% in the past year.
4/6/12-WSJ-A.5. Dept. of Labor reports initial jobless claims at 357K, SA, for the last week of
March were the lowest since 4/2008.
3/27/12-WSJ Online. The Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller index that tracks 20 U.S. metro areas
fell to levels not seen since the end of 2002.
- C.4. The S&P 500 traded above 1400 for the first time since 5/2008.
3/23/12-WSJ Online. TIPS sell at a record low Yield of negative-0.089%
3/16/12-WSJ-A.1,A.12. Effective 4/1/12 the US will have the highest corporate tax rate,
10-to-15 percentage points higher than the world average.
3/11/12-WSJ Online. China’s trade deficit, $31.5 billion in February, the largest on record.
3/9/12-WSJ-c.4. Natural gas prices at $2.272 per mbtu were the lowest since 2/15/02.
3/2/12-WSJ-A.1. Euro zone unemployment hit 10.7%, a 12-year high.
2/28/12-WSJ-A.1. Jan. pending home sales, National Assoc. of Realtors Index at 97, was the
highest since 1/2007
- A.1. Japanese chip maker Elpida filed for bankruptcy, the largest in Japanese history.
2/22/12 WSJ Online. According to the National Association of Realtors, the January inventory of
previously owned homes listed for sale fell to 2.31MM, the lowest level since March 2005.
That is a 6.1-month supply at the current sales pace, a level economists consider healthy.
2/2/12-Financial Times Online. The Baltic Dry index (shipping cost on bulk commodity dry goods
vessels) fell to $5,327 per day, the lowest August 1986, mainly due to a glut of ships and slow
1/31/12-WSJ Online. Five-year Treasury yields set an all-time low at 0.704%
1/28/12-WSJ-B.5. The USDA reports the US cattle herd at 90.8MM units is the lowest in 60 years.
1/24/12-WSJ-A.1. Japan recorded its first annual trade deficit since 1980 for 2011.
1/18/12-WSJ Online. The National Association of Homebuilders Index rose to 25 in December, the highest
since June 2007.
1/14/12-Bloomberg. German 5-year gov’t rate dropped to as low as 0.733%, the least since Bloomberg
began collecting the data in 1990. The Dutch 10-year yield dropped six basis points to 2.09% after
reaching a record low 2.073%
1/12/12-NYT-quoting Xconomy. Per CB Insights, VCs invested $30.6 billion in 3,051 deals in 2011, highest
in 10 years.
- AP. Freddie Mac reported the average rate on the 30-year fixed mortgage fell to 3.89%, a record
low (since early 1950’s). Ditto 15-year rates at 3.16%.
1/11/12-WSJ Online. Orange juice futures hit a record high, closing at $2.1275 per # on the ICE.
12/23/11-WSJ-C.2. 30-year fixed rate mortgages fell to a record 3.91% according to the Freddie Mac
12/15/11-WSJ-C.1. Iowa State University survey indicated farm prices doubled over the past 5 years
in key producing states. In Iowa, the biggest producer of corn and soybeans, the average price
per acre reached $6,708, up 32% in 2011, the largest increase in the 70-year survey history.
12/10/11-WSJ.B.4. The USDA forecasted record global production of wheat and corn, 689M tons. And
867.5M tons, respectively.
11/30/11-WSJ Online, and A.1. U.S. exports of gasoline, diesel and other oil-based fuels are on track
to be a net exporter of petroleum products in 2011 for the first time in 62 years,
according to he U.S. Energy Information Administration .
11/10/11-WSJ-A.1, A.3. Jefferson County Ala. filed for the largest municipal bankruptcy in US
10/22/11-Financial Times. UK inflation at 5.2% is a 20-year high.
10/22/11 WSJ Online. In intraday trading, the yen moved to ¥75.78 per dollar, a record high.
10/17/11-WSJ Online. Per Realtor.com, 2.19 million homes listed for sale at the end of September,
down 20% from a year earlier and the lowest since 2007 (when records began).
10/7/11-WSJ-A.1, A.5. The 30-year fixed mortgage rate hit 3.94%, the lowest on record,
according to Freddie Mac.
9/24/11-WSJ-A.1. Gold dropped 5.8%, the largest drop in over 5 years, and for the week was
the worst since 1987.
- Silver dropped 18% for the largest single day drop since 1980.
9/15/11-WSJ-A.1. SAT scores for the 2011 class dropped, with reading and writing at record
9/14/11-WSJ-A.1. Per the Census, median US family income fell to $49,445, the lowest since
1996. The fraction of Americans living in poverty is 15.1%, highest since 1993.
9/3/11-WSJ-A1. The yield on 10-year treasuries fell below 2% for the 2nd time in 50 years,
the first time being a week ago, 1.987%.
8/24/11-WSJ-C13. The yield on 10-year treasuries fell below 2% for the first time in 50 years,
at 1.974%. The lowest yield is .92% in April 1942.
8/19/11-WSJ Online. The dollar retreated to ¥75.94 in early trade, surpassing the previous
post-World War II record of ¥76.25.
- Gold record: contract for August delivery (Comex) was up $31.50, or 1.7%, at
$1,850.40 a troy ounce in midday trade.
8/11/11-Financial Times Online. Gold record $1800.
8/10/11-WSJ-C7. Swiss franc record .7067 francs.
8/9/11-WSJ Online. Swiss franc record .7268 francs.
8/8/11-Financial Times Online. Swiss franc reached a record SFr0.7497 against the dollar.
- Gold record $1779.
8/4/11-WSJ-C.8. Gold record $1663.00.
8/3/11-WSJ-C.7. Swiss franc at another record vs. the $, at .7624 francs.
7/30/11-WSJ-B.11. Gold record $1628.30.
7/30/11-WSJ-C.12. Gold record $1616.60.
7/19/11-WSJ Online. Gold for July delivery rose $12.30, or 0.8%, to settle at a
record $1,602.10 a troy ounce on the Comex.
7/14/11-WSJ Online. The Swiss franc his a record against the Euro and the $, at .8080
francs per $ on 7/14 and the Euro at 1.149.
7/12/11-WSJ Online. Gold at record, $1562.30.
7/5/11-Financial Times Online. Cashews, walnuts and pecans are at record highs:
cashews at $4.55 a pound, up more than 60% from a year ago, in-shell walnuts
up 43% and pecans are up 38 per cent vs. last year, per the International Nut
and Dried Fruit Foundation .
7/1/11-WSJ Online. June construction spending fell by 0.6% to a SA annual rate of
$753.48 B, the Commerce Department reported. That was the 6th straight
monthly decline and the lowest seasonally adjusted figure since Sept. 1999.
6/30/11-Financial Times Online. Corn suffered its steepest fall in 15 years after record
prices prompted US farmers to overplant. At 92.3m acres, US plantings were
the second biggest since WW2. In Chicago, corn for July delivery fell as much
as 83 cents to $6.15 a bushel. The 11.9% decline was the sharpest in % terms
6/16/11-WSJ Online. Short-term yields hit the lowest levels on record, 0.3% on the
- WSJ-A.1,A.4. Core consumer prices rose .3% in May, the biggest gain in
6/10/11-Financial Times Online. The USDA said domestic corn stocks would decline to
695MM bu. by the end of August 2012, the lowest since the mid-1990s.
- Corn for July delivery on the CBOT rose to a record $7.93 a bushel.
6/1/11-WSJ Online. Housing prices fell to 2002 levels according to the S&P/Case-Shiller
5/31/11-Financial Times Online. The UK economy is set to experience the slowest pick-up
in consumer spending of any post-recession period since 1830, according to a FT
analysis of official forecasts and the Office for Budget Responsibility.
5/5/11-WSJ-C.5. The Swiss franc hit a record high v. the $, .8618f.
5/4/11-WSJ-C.5. The Swiss franc hit a record high v. the $, .8593f.
- A.1. Silver fell $3.50 / oz., or 7.6% to $42.58, the steepest 1-day drop in
5/3/11-WSJ-A.1, A.12. According to the CBO, the percentage of American households
paying no federal income taxes rose to 51% in 2009, the highest in 18 years.
- According to the same study, the top 10% of Americans paid the highest tax
rate of all the OECD countries.
4/29/11-WSJ Online. The ICE Dollar Index, which tracks the U.S. $ against a trade-weighted
basket of currencies, fell to the lowest level since mid-2008. The Canadian $ hit
a 3-year high, the Australian dollar hit an all-time high (first floated in 1983).
4/27/11-WSJ Online. Silver prices rose to a 31-year highs and approached $50 an ounce.
4/22/11-A.1. Gold closes at record $1503.20
4/20/11-WSJ-A.1, C.14. Gold touches record $1500.00
- WSJ Online. Hedge fund assets topped $2T for the first time, according to
Hedge Fund Research Inc.
4/16/11-WSJ-A.1,B.14 Gold record $1485.30
- Silver at $42.566 was the highest settlement price since 1/17/1980.
4/6/11-WSJ-A.1,C.13 Gold record $1,451.80
4/4/11-WSJ Online. Total U.S. debt hit an all-time high of $14.27011T vs. ceiling $14.29T.
4/1/11-WSJ-C.6 US Cattle futures hit all time highs, $1.2155/# for April delivery, while
US herds are at a 5-decade low.
- C.6. US Hog futures hit records on some deliveries, June at $1.0387/#.
3/30/11-WSJ-A,1, C.14. T-bond 10-year benchmark bonds (at 3.489%) fell for the 8th
straight session, the first time in 21 years.
3/29/11-WSJ-A.1, C.1. The Australian $ hit an all-time high of $1.03.
3/25/11-WSJ Online. The Australian dollar rose Friday to its highest level against the
dollar since the currency was freely floated in 1983 and traded as high as $1.0296.
3/24/11-WSJ-A.1, C.3. Gold at record $1,437.90.
3/23/11-WSJ-A.1, A.5. The National Assn. of Realtors reported sales of existing homes,
February, dropped 9.6% to $156,100, the lowest since 2/2002.
- Sales of new homes hit a record low in February, dn. 16.9% to a SA 250,000,
according to the Commerce Dept.
3/21/11-WSJ Online. Sales of US previously occupied fell 9.6% in February and prices
fell to the lowest level in nearly nine years according to the National Association of
Realtors, to $156,100 median price.
- NAR also reported 2010 was the worst year for sales of previously occupied
homes since 1997, with about 4.9M homes sold.
3/17/11-WSJ Online. The Yen hit a record against the $, to 76.32 Y/$, in the wake of
Yen repatriation related to the earth quake / tsunami / nuclear events.
WSJ-A.1, B.1. Prescription drug prices accelerated at the fastest rate of the
decade in 2010, up 6.9%, according to Barclay’s Capital.
3/16/11-WSJ Online. The producer price index soared to a SA 1.6% increase in February
and wholesale food prices alone surged 3.9%—the biggest upward spike since
1974, according to the Labor Department.
- Housing starts in February tumbled 22.5%—the sharpest decline in 27 years—
to an annual pace of 479K, the lowest since April 2009, per Commerce Department.
- Building permits fell 8% during the month to 517K, the lowest level since the
data series began more than 40 years ago.
3/11/11-WSJ-A1, A2. The January US trade deficit widened but exports rose to a record
- A.1. The federal deficit in Feb. was $222.5B, a record.
3/10/11-WSJ-c.2. Cattle futures on the CME hit an all-time high, $1.1752 per #. US cattle
herds are at the lowest level since the 1950’s.
3/3/11-WSJ-A.1, C10. Gold at record $1437.20.
3/1/11-WSJ Online. The Institute for Supply Management's manufacturing index moved
to 61.4 in Feb., the strongest reading since May 2004.
2/24/11-AP Newswire. The FDIC reported the number of banks at risk of failing made up
nearly 12% of all federally insured banks in the final three months of 2010, the
highest level in 18 years, to 884 banks.
2/23/11-WSJ-A.1,C.14. Cocoa on the ICE hit $3,633 per ton, the highest since Jan.,
- WSJ Online. The $ dropped below its previous all-time low of 0.9301 Swiss
francs on the trading platform EBS, and fell as far as 0.9275 francs.
2/19/11-WSJ-A.1,B.14. Silver on the Comex closed at $32.298, the highest since
2/12/11-WSJ-B.11. Cotton hit a record high on the ICE, $1.9445 per #.
2/10/11-WSJ-A.1, C.8. The USDA predicted that US corn stocks would fall to the
lowest level in 15 years.
2/9/11-WSJ Online. China's central bank fixed the yuan's exchange rate at a record
against the dollar at 6.5850 yuan, to quell rising inflation pressures.
- The dollar hit a 13-year low against the Taiwan dollar, at 28.994.
2/4/11-WSJ Online. Copper futures ended at a record high—March delivery up 3.5 cents,
or 0.8%, higher at $4.5795 a pound on the Comex, and also hit $4.614, a record
2/3/11-WSJ Online. In 2010, total compensation and benefits at publicly traded Wall
Street banks and securities firms hit a record of $135 billion, the 2nd consecutive
yearly record, according to an analysis by The Wall Street Journal.
- FAO, various other. The FAO Food Price Index (FFPI) rose for the 7th
Consecutive month, averaging 231 points in January 2011, up 3.4% from
Dec. 2010 and the highest (in both real and nominal terms) since the index
was backtracked in 1990.
- WSJ.C.12. Sugar prices hit a 30-year high in the ICAP futures market.
2/2/11-WSJ-a.1, 2. According to the Institute for Supply Management, its index of
manufacturing activity hit 60.8, the highest since 2004.
- C.11. Copper at a record, $4.54 per lb. on the Comex.
1/28/11-WSJ Online. Cotton on the ICE hit $1.6939 per lb., a 140-year high.
1/26/11-WSJ Online. Per the Commerce Dept., 2010 new home sales at 310,000 units
was the lowest since 1963.
1/21/11-WSJ Online. The steepness of the yield curve (the spread between 2-year and
30-year Treasuries) hit a record four percentage points, notes RBS Securities.
1/2/0/11-AP. Per the National Association of Realtors pre-existing home sales fell
4.8% to 4.91MM units in 2010, the lowest since 1997
1/19/11-WSJ-A.1. U.S. manufacturing jobs rose 136K, the first time since 1997, per
HIS Global Insight and Moody’s Analytics. In the same period, 6MM U.S.
manufacturing jobs were lost.
1/15/11-WSJ Online. The 5 largest U.S. banks are now larger than ever, with
Total Assets at $8.6T, 11.8% higher than pre-recession levels, per Capital IQ
and the FED.
1/13/11-AP Newswire. RealtyTrac reported a 2010 foreclosures at a record high of
1.0MM homes, up 1.67% from 2009. With 5MM households currently in
default, 2011 could go beyond 1.2MM foreclosures.
1/12/11-WSJ Online. Palladium hit $814.50/oz., the highest since 1/2001.
- A.15. The WSJ / Heritage Foundation Index of Economic Freedom ranked
the U.S. at #9, the lowest in over a decade.
1/5/11-WSJ Online. The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization's monthly
food price index for December rose to a record 214.7.
1/4/11-WSJ-C.10. Gold hits record $1422.60.
1/3/11-WSJ Online. Personal bankruptcies rose in 2010 to 1.53MM, up 9% from 2009
and the highest since the new law in 2005 (American Bankruptcy Institute).
2.1%. A recently released study from the FED, Commerce Dept, UC Davis and
Dartmouth suggest the productivity rare from 1995-2006 may be overstated
.2% per year due to vendor price reductions owing to outsourcing.
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