New Real Numbers

By Greg Hunter’s USAWatchdog.com  

It appeared one of the President’s top economic advisors, Larry Summers, was trying to do a preemptive strike against what may be some bad unemployment numbers.  If unemployment is up, blame harsh winter weather!  John Williams, an economist from shadowstats.com (also known as Shadow Government Statistics), feels just the opposite.  In his latest bulletin, Williams says, “Reuters reported that Larry Summers, in a CNBC interview (Monday, March 1st), claimed “winter blizzards were likely to distort February jobless figures.” I take such comments from an Administration official — in the week of the employment report release — as an effort to alter market expectations and to soften potential negative market impact from worse than expected results.”   Whether or not unemployment creeps up, it is outrageous that a top administration official would blame the weather for a less than desirable employment statistic.  That sounds like a grade school excuse on the same level as “the dog ate my homework.”  SGS points out the straightforward idea “People generally do not lose their jobs due to snow days.”   This morning Bureau of Labor Statistics reported unemployment remained steady at 9.7% as 36,000 jobs were shed from the economy.   (SGS unemployment now stands at 21.6%, up .4% )

Unemployment continues to look better than reality because of accounting gimmicks used at BLS.  In the latest SGS report, economist John Williams says,  “. . .  As economic activity shows renewed or intensified downside movement in the months ahead, the unemployment rate should rise and payroll declines should intensify (net of short-lived census hiring), regardless of the reporting distortions.”

In other new real numbers from SGS, total obligations for the U.S. government went way up in a just released report.  Shadowstats.com said, “. . . total federal obligations as of September 30, 2009, stood at $70.7 trillion, up from $65.6 trillion the year before . . .”  What does that mean?  Well, in 2002 the total U.S. obligations stood at just $35 trillion and change.  So, the indebtedness of America doubled in just 7 short years.  With a Gross Domestic Product of $14.3 trillion, total U.S. obligations are nearly 5 times GDP!   Rising obligations are not a sign of good economic health.

Finally, have we already started the next wave down on the double-dip recession that is shaping up more and more like a depression?  Williams thinks we still have “continued financial system instability.”  Williams says things are getting worse and the Fed knows it.  He says, “. . . Mr. Bernanke continues to behave as though he has a serious problem. Consider the latest surge in the monetary base.”  It surged by $90 billion in just the last 2 weeks of February.  It was another new record.  Record amounts of money printing will produce very big inflation.   I just don’t know exactly when.

Even though a record amount of money is being created and pumped into the banks, SGS says the overall money supply is still shrinking!  That means money is being held back from the “main street” economy by the banks.  I think the Fed is pumping in money because it knows big losses are coming!  The banks will simply need extra cash on hand to pay off sour investments.  That’s one big reason they are not lending.  So, shrinking overall money supply is the tip-off we are getting on a down elevator and, according to Williams, that is “signaling an intensifying economic downturn in the months ahead.”      

Comments
  1. Mark Mudgett

    Hello All,

    The BLS data has been released.

    http://www.bls.gov/news.release/empsit.t15.htm

    http://www.bls.gov/news.release/empsit.t17.htm

    Look at the difference on Table A-15 between non-adjusted Feb 2010 stats and seasonally adjusted for Feb 2010. I think the adjustment is for snow-days.

    According to table B-1, construction workers payed dearly for some reason and I don’t think it was because of snow. Non-residential construction is worse than the residential stats.

    On table B-1, go to the bottom of the table. Look at Fed government employment, without the postal service lay-offs, Fed gubmint employment is way-up! Keynes was right! Lets hire more gubmint workers and our problems will be solved! Andy Stern should be happy; too bad our economy is not responding.

    States are hiring education bureaucrats. Cities and counties are taking it in-the-shorts. The classroom school teacher is gettting axed while state education bureaucrats are receiving the benefit of fewer classroom teachers which translates to more students per teacher.

    Hey Greg,

    If I read between the lines of your article regarding Bernanke, you forecasted the BLS stats well. I don’t see a recovery in these numbers; which sector is leading us out of this recession? I can’t find one. Gubmint spending won’t lead us out of this downturn. Labor stats are a trailing indicator; however, a few sectors will show signs of life while recovery is underway. WHERE’S THE BEEF?

    markm

    • Greg

      Mark,
      Thank you!
      G

  2. Num3ers

    90 trillion in just the last 2 weeks of February? 90 billion maybe?

    • Greg

      Numbers,
      My bad . . . Thank you! It is $90 billion.
      Greg

  3. Brad Thrasher

    Billion, trillion, today some are estimating the make believe derivative market in quadrillions. Do the zeros even matter anymore? How much of nothing does it take to add up to nothing?

    The old expression, “it looked good on paper” may one day give way to “the computer models told us.”

    History teaches us that all such financial crisis as this one are ultimately resolved by war. For so long as we avoid turning the surface of planet earth and everything on it to glass, I shall remain, ever hopeful.

  4. dick hertz

    I admire shadow stats work,although you and most others concentrate on liabilities.Take a minute to look at the assets of the UNITED STATES INCORPORATED and you will see values(priced in FEDERAL RESERVE NOTES)greater than all debt and future liabilities combined.Read the COMPREHENSIVE ANNUAL FINANCIAL REPORT by the federal government.See the CERTIFIED ANNUAL FINANCIAL REPORT from your state and county,city and school district to see the reality in numbers.If you have a pretty face,why draw all attention to the smelly end?(unless you are handsomely compensated to do so) CAFR1.com

  5. Brad Thrasher

    Another price shock. While shopping yesterday we realized we hadn’t pulled anything out for dinner. Retired Hockey Mom loves KFC so I suggested it. Her fave, the #2 dinner, breast & wing – 2 sides, is now $7.49.

    We drove across the street for Chinese takeout. Instead of spending 20 bucks, I spent under $12 and we have leftovers.

    I suppose KFC will be a fast food casualty of the new economy pretty soon.

  6. keith howell

    Gregg, you’re on target about gov’t stats. SGS has it right. Few writers today have the courage to tell the truth. Jim Willie,CB, of The Hat Trick Letter, Paul Craig Roberts, Craig Harris of earthblognews, a few on Informationclearinghouse and Global Research.ca plus Gregg Hunter are current and cutting edge writers. Thanks gregg. I remember you from N.C.

    • Greg

      Keith,
      Thank you for your support.
      Greg

  7. major

    As time goes forward it will be harder and harder for the administration to hide the truth about the economy and the lower his ratings will go…

    His stimulous bills were covers for rescuing Wall Street bankers and foreign interests; not Americans. Guess why Bernanke wont reveal beneficiaries of bailouts and stimulous bills?? Obviously a lot of the money went overseas…that would enrage Americans and result in instant impeachment bills for Obama and others.

    The Congress let themselves be had by confirming Bernanke and then he turns around and denies them access to the bailout list of beneficiaries.

    • Greg

      Major,
      We are headding for a fall. I hope you have your pads on!
      Greg

  8. Donna

    Stay with this as it gets to the national medical insurance!

    I keep hearing that the home mortgage mess actually began in the 1990’s and I also noticed that when smoking bans spread, home losses went wild as ‘leisure industry’ businesses closed.

    I did some research following the money and I found out that the state smoking bans were funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, founded by the past owner of Johnson & Johnson. Once the foundation was set up, JnJ then bought at currently 250 pharmaceutical companies. They MAKE the no-smoke products AND founded Tobacco Free Kids with $84 Million! I followed ‘the money’ on the sugar, the obese and the alcohol issues and it is the same behind it. Guess who makes Splenda, owns weight loss surgery centeres and has new meds for alcohol problems! Guess who funds thru grants negative research to fit ‘the agendas’. Guess who is now running the FDA!

    I further found out that the RWJF paid for Hillary’s two hour episode on TV pushing a national health insurance AND also for Obama’s ‘Infomercial’ ALONG with paying for the advertising for it. Checking visitors to the White House, the RWJF is one of, if not THE most often visitor to the White House. I think the Johnson & Johnson company is setting itself up to be THE national drug company while advising of ‘social’ changes to FIT their agendas.

    It strongly appears we have been VERY scammed, sold out to big business.

    • Greg

      Donna,
      The country is is very deep financial trouble. There is going to be a price paid for thios and it will certainly come in the form of inflation. Let’s hope it does not come in the form of financial collapse. Thank you for your suipport.

      Greg

  9. RANDTHINKS

    YOU HAVEN’T THOUGHT IT OUT;; GOLD AS A HEDGE-OR DAY TO DAY CURRENCY CANNOT BE PRACTICALLY WIELDED BY CONSUMERS WANTING PRODUCTS-AT A-N-Y RELATIVE PRICING.FABRICATED GOLD COINS WOULD BE CUT TO SMALL BITS, BUT THE RELATIVE WORTH FLUCTUATION WOULD MAKE IT UP AND DOWN LIKE A YO-YO. THE BIG GOLD BARS-WHO WOULD WANT TO OWN THEM WHEN IT WOULD COST CONSIDERABLE PREMIUM TO PROTECT THOSE GOLD BARS—-ONLY SECURITY GUARDS WOULD BENEFIT!( WHICH I FIND DELICIOUSLY FAIR, SINCE THEY ARE DISRESPECTED AND UNDERPAID ANYWAY!).WHAT DO GUARDS NEED TO PROTECT COMMODITY AND WEALTH-GUNS AND BULLETS. OUR REVOLUTIONARY RESERVES HAVE, AS HAVE AVERAGE AMERICANS, BOUGHT UP PRACTICAL ARMAMENTS-NOT JUST TO TRADE-BUT WHEN THE GOVERNMENT TRIES TO SQUEEZE US TO A DIGITAL-ELECTRONIC AND WORTHLESS MONEY PEG——TIME TO CHANGE THE GOVERNMENT!THE GOVERNMENT KNOWS THE CITIZENS ARE GOING TO REBEL-AND JUST NOW, THEY ARE ISSUING ARMAMENT TO TAX FOR FEES AND MONEY. THEY KNOW THE CITIZENS ARE GOING TO REMAND ARMS AND PRODUCTION AWAY FROM GOVERNMENT CONTROL-THERE IS NOT GOING TO BE ANY PRODUCTION OF COMMODITIES WITHOUT BARTER AND VALUES REINVESTED IN LABOR. THE DEBT WILL BE JETTISONED LIKE A DEAD ROCKET BOOSTER IN OUTER SPACE. I WILL REJOIN THE GUARDS AND DO WHAT I ALWAYS DID-PROTECT CITIZENS AND PROPERTY. WORKS FOR ME,AS SIMPLE AS IT IS!

    • Greg

      RANDTHINKS,
      I have thought it out. Read early posts on the site and you will see I and my sourceshave a track record of being correct. Thank you for the comment. “Good men can disagree.”
      Greg

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