Thursday, January 14, 2010

On the Retail Inventory "Bounce"

Reuters reports on the "surprise":

U.S. business inventories rose more than expected in November, according to a government report on Thursday, supporting views of a pick-up in the economic growth pace during the fourth quarter.

The Commerce Department said inventories increased 0.4 percent after gaining 0.4 percent in October, previously reported as a 0.2 percent rise.

Economists polled by Reuters had expected a 0.2 percent rise in November. The rebuilding of inventories following a period of aggressive liquidation is among the factors expected to drive the economy's growth as it recovers from the most severe downturn since the 1930s.
As can be seen below, the "rebuild" was driven completely by wholesale trade.

And as EconomPic readers know, the build in wholesale was completely built by farm products (which was not "real" growth, but instead a reflection of the spike in the price of corn and hogs).

Does anyone do actual research anymore?

Source: Census


  1. "Does anyone do actual research anymore?"

    Not so much, but that's why we have guys like you.

  2. Does anyone do actual research anymore?

    It seems pretty clear that most financial reporting is propaganda.

    Absent policies of "positive" inflation (pun intended), the finance industry would be much smaller and not nearly as well paying.

    The primary purpose of Wall St. is to create and distribute inflation. The primary purpose of the Federal Reserve is to preserve the aggregate value of issued credit. Wall St. is largely a skimming operation.

    With the above mind, it's not surprising how the press framed the inventory data.

  3. "Does anyone do actual research anymore?"

    Press agents and public relations officers send out self-serving press releases filled with pre-digested data. The reporters do a quick rip, read and rewrite.

    It's been that way for as long as I can remember.

  4. Anon at 8:32 beat me to the punch, but:
    "Does anyone do actual research anymore?"

    That would be NO. And further you should not post this stuff you may cause a panic!