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Thursday, March 10, 2011

US Economy: Numbers Check


This set of numbers for the U.S. economy does not look good. The prime reasons boil down to reckless spending by Congress and the President, and reckless money printing by the Federal Reserve. Who's got the guts to stop this run away train? Or is it already unstoppable?

January 2009
Today (3/10/11)
% chg
Source
Avg. Retail price/gallon gas in U.S.
$1.83
$3.520
92.34%
1
Crude oil, European Brent (barrel)
$43.48
$114.93
164.33%
2
Crude oil, West TX Inter. (barrel)
$38.74
$104.38
169.44%
2
Gold: London (per troy oz.)
$853.25
$1,431.00
67.71%
2
Corn, No.2 yellow, Central IL
$3.56
$6.8275
91.78%
2
Soybeans, No. 1 yellow, IL
$9.66
$13.554
40.3%
2
Sugar, cane, raw, world, per lb.
$0.125
$0.2871
129.7%
2
Unemployment rate, non-farm, overall
7.6%
8.9%
17.1%
3
Unemployment rate, blacks
12.6%
15.3%
21.42%
3
Number of unemployed
11,616,000
13,673,000
17.73%
3
Number of fed. Employees, ex. Military (curr = Feb. 2011 prelim)
2,779,000
2,856,000
2.77%
3
Real median household income (2008 v 2009)
$50,112
$49,777
-0.7%
4
Number of food stamp recipients (as of Dec. 2010)
31,983,716
44,082,324
37.83%
5
Number of unemployment benefit recipients (2/19/10)
7,526,598
8,772,818
16.56%
6
Number of long-term unemployed
2,600,000
6,000,000
130.8%
3
Poverty rate, individuals (2008 v 2009)
13.2%
14.3%
8.3%
4
People in poverty in U.S. (2008 v 2009)
39,800,000
43,600,000
9.5%
4
U.S. Rank in Economic Freedom World Rankings
5
9
n/a
10
Present Situation Index (curr = 2/11)
29.9
33.4
11.7%
11
Failed banks (curr = 2010 + 2011 to date)
140
180+
29%
12
U.S. Dollar versus Japanese yen exchange rate
89.76
82.93
-7.61%
2
U.S. Money supply, M1, in billions (current =  2/21/11)
1,575.1
1,878.5
19.3%
13
U.S. Money supply, M2, in billions (current =  2/21/11)
8,310.9
8,893.7
7.01%
13
National debt, in trillions
$10.627
$14.229
33.89%
14
Note the last item:  In the last two years we have accumulated national debt at a rate more than 27 times as fast as during the rest of our entire nation's history.  Over 27 times as fast!  Metaphorically, speaking, if you are driving in the right lane doing 65 MPH and a car rockets past you in the left lane 27 times faster . . . It would be doing 1,755 MPH!
Sources:
 (1) U.S. Energy Information Administration
 (2) Wall Street Journal 
 (3) Bureau of Labor Statistics 
 (4) Census Bureau 
 (5) USDA 
 (6) U.S. Dept. Of Labor 
 (7) FHFA  
 (8) Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller 
 (9) RealtyTrac 
 (10) Heritage Foundation and WSJ 
 (11) The Conference Board 
 (12) FDIC
 (13) Federal Reserve (Data360.org)
 (14) U.S. Treasury (US Debt Clock)

Calculated Risk

MishTalk - Mike Shedlock

Paul Krugman - NY Times

The Big Picture - Barry Ritholtz

naked capitalism - Yves Smith

Pragmatic Capitalism

Washington's Blog

Safe Haven

Paper Economy

The Daily Reckoning - Australia