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Gender: Male
Hometown: Minnesota
Member since: Sat Jan 1, 2005, 04:45 AM
Number of posts: 10,507

About Me

Thanks for all the good wishes. A wellness check was done several days ago My next door neighbor of 43 years is looking out for me

Journal Archives

Today's PCE Inflation Report - the Fed's favorite gauge (core PCE)

The PCE Inflation report came out today, Friday 5/26/23. On the overall inflation, April (+0.4%) was a surprise increase from March (+0.1%) (see the red bars in the below graph), while the core PCE inflation still remains high, and has not come down much in recent months -- see the blue bars.

The Federal reserve's favorite inflation gauge for projecting FUTURE inflation has been the core PCE (which is the PCE less food and energy). It's not that food and energy are unimportant, but are quite volatile from month to month. The core measure is thought to be better for projecting trends into the future.

Below is the CORE PCE inflation trend -- the rolling 3 month average and the rolling 6 month average
The 3 month rolling average had a nice little downturn because the big January increase (+0.6%) dropped out of the 3 month range

It's still stuck at a little bit more than double the Fed's 2% target.

PCE News release: http://www.bea.gov/newsreleases/national/pi/pinewsrelease.htm

The above shows the last 5 months. I found the latest 12 months (and way beyond) at FRED:

PCE: https://fred.stlouisfed.org/series/PCEPI
CORE PCE: https://fred.stlouisfed.org/series/PCEPILFE

The rolling 3 month and 6 month figures are calculated from the index values from the above FRED series for the CORE PCE (not from doing one digit math averages).

Consumer Price Index (CPI) released May 10

For comparison purposes, here is the most recent consumer price index graph (through April, released May 10)

CPI - https://data.bls.gov/timeseries/CUSR0000SA0&output_view=pct_1mth
CORE CPI - http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/CUSR0000SA0L1E&output_view=pct_1mth
(Choose "More Formatting Options" at the upper right of the page for other views such as rolling averages of past 12 months, past 6 months, past 3 months)

Inflation measures - last 3 months annualized, thru April 2023. Up to date as of 5/26/23

PCE 3.13%     4.25%
CPI 3.21%     5.10%
PPI -0.44%     2.16% (Producer Price Index, aka Wholesale Prices)

Cooling wholesale prices should ideally be reflected in the PCE and CPI in the next month or two, but seems not to be that good of a predictor.

Suspected arson damages St. Paul Islamic center, 6th attack on MN mosques this year

"We simply cannot normalize these incidents": Suspected arson damages St. Paul Islamic center, CBSLocal, 5/17/23

... Few details were initially available, but the fire is said to have happened at Tawhid Islamic Center of Minnesota, which is on the 400 block of Dale Street. Crews responded at about 8:45 a.m. (Wednesday morning, 5/17 -progree) on a report of flames coming from the building.

This is the sixth suspected attack on a mosque this year in Minnesota, and the second in two weeks in St. Paul, after security cameras captured vandals throwing rocks at the Masjid al-Sunnah Mosque on Pederson Street. (Vandals? I thought there was just one -progree)

Police officials saying they will increase patrols at mosques across the city, and Carter promised he'll lobby to raise funds for more security cameras.

Emphasis added by progree.

More: including video of the damage: https://www.cbsnews.com/minnesota/news/st-paul-fd-investigating-suspected-arson-at-islamic-center-on-dale-street/

Prime-age workers are flooding back into the workforce. Older workers are staying home

Adriana Belmonte·Senior Distribution Editor, Yahoo Finance, 5/12/23


LFPR = Labor Force Participation rates

The graphs are fascinating so I'm listing them. What is below the "GRAPH" line in each case is Progree's impression of what's most interesting about the graph.

Always remember that for plain ol' LFPR, that is age 16 to infinity, yes including centenarians, and are affected by the general aging of the workforce, the rapidly increasing average age of the senior component of the population, and of course boomer retirements. The age 55+ is also increasingly average older age too.

GRAPH: LFPR of 25-54 years old aka Prime Age, and age 55+ (1/2018 onward) .
Age 25-54 is at 83.3%, equal to the pre-pandemic high of January 2020 and the highest rate since September 2008

GRAPH: Job Openings and Hires. (9/2016 onward)
Job openings have fallen to lowest since April '21. But this is still way up from what preceded April 2021

GRAPH: LFPR of: Hispanics/Latinos, Blacks, Whites (1/2019 onward).
Hispanics/Latinos are about 5 percentage points higher than whites, Blacks about 2 percentage points higher than whites in a recent upsurge. Remember the labor force participation rate is the percentage of the age 16+ population (in this graph) that is employed or is actively seeking work (more than just looking at job listings is required to be included in this). Something to keep in mind when some redneck says "them uhh multicultural types are lazy and don't want to work nowadays".

GRAPH: LFPR (1/1971 onward)

Also included is a lot of blah blah about the factors that may be depressing older people's LFPR and holding some back of all ages (compared to say the peak decades ago - the prime age peak was around 2000). I won't attempt to summarize all that or excerpt-icize all that.

Here's a dump of many LFPR data series

The LFPR is the Employed + jobless people who have looked for work in the last 4 weeks (and say they want a job and are able to take one if offered. Looking for work involves more than just looking at job listings). All divided by the civilian non-institutional population age 16+ (in the case of the regular LFPR, or divided by the civilian non-institutional population of whatever age, gender, race etc. for the various sub-demographic measures. For example. the LFPR of age 25-54 females is the number of those employed or actively seeking work divided by the civilian non-institutional population of age 25-54 females.)

SA means Seasonally adjusted. NSA means Not Seasonally Adjusted

LFPR - Labor Force Participation Rate for some age groups
16+: SA: http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LNS11300000 NSA: http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LNU01300000
16-24: SA: http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LNS11324887 NSA: http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LNU01324887
25-34: SA: http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LNS11300089 NSA: http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LNU01300089
25-54: SA: http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LNS11300060 NSA: http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LNU01300060
55-64: -------------------- NSA: https://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LNU01300095
55+: SA: http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LNS11324230 NSA: http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LNU01324230
65+: SA: ---------------- NSA: http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LNU01300097

[] Labor Force Participation Rate (prime age 25-54) by gender
All: http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LNS11300060
Men: http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LNS11300061
Women: http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LNS11300062

[] Labor Force Participation Rate (age 16+) by gender
ALL: http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LNS11300000
Men: http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LNS11300001
Women: http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LNS11300002

[] Labor Force Participation Rates, Blacks, Whites,

Black LFPR: http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LNS11300006
White LFPR: http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LNS11300003

LFPR age 25-54: LNS11300060 & LNU01300060 There are no SA timeseries available for black and white
Blacks: http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LNU01300066 (no SA),
Whites: http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LNU01300063 (no SA),

PPI Graphs and links (with yesterday's CPI graph at the bottom)

-------^^-DARN, that should read APR 2022, not APR 2023

Rolling 3 month average of CORE PPI (annualized), last 6 readings: 3.4%, 2.9%, 4.5%, 4.0%, 3.8%, 2.2%

The big January +0.6% reading dropped out of the 3 month average, helping to drop the 3 month average thru April by more than 1.5 percentage points

Latest PPI summary http://www.bls.gov/news.release/ppi.nr0.htm
Producer prices front page: http://www.bls.gov/ppi/
Producer Price Index (PPI), seasonally adjusted http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/WPSFD4?output_view=pct_1mth

OLD CORE PPI - Producer Price Index, seasonally adjusted - Final demand goods less foods and energy -
CORE PPI - Producer Price Index, seasonally adjusted - Final demand less foods. energy. and trade services -

I use the latter Core PPI (final demand less foods, energy, and trade services) because that's what the BLS features in its news release).

Compare to yesterday's CPI report which is pretty much been flatlined for several months at more than double the Fed's 2% target

All about yesterday's CPI: https://www.democraticunderground.com/10143072605#post5

Graphs. Links. Rolling 3 month averages

CPI: . . . . April: +0.4% (March: +0.1%), 12 months: +4.9%
CORE CPI: April: +0.4% (March: +0.4%), 12 months: +5.5%

SOME 12 month changes: Energy: -5.1%, Food: +7.7%,

Rolling 3 month averages thru April, latest 6 values (annualized)
CPI: . . . . 4.5% 3.3% 3.5% 4.1% 3.8% 3.2%
Core CPI: 5.0% 4.3% 4.6% 5.2% 5.1% 5.1%

BLS's Monthly CPI report: https://www.bls.gov/news.release/cpi.nr0.htm

Some excerpts:
The index for shelter was the largest contributor to the monthly all items increase, followed by increases in the index for used cars and trucks and the index for gasoline. The increase in the gasoline index more than offset declines in other energy component indexes, and the energy index rose 0.6 percent in April.

The food index was unchanged in April, as it was in March. The index for food at home fell 0.2 percent over the month while the index for food away from home rose 0.4 percent

CPI Index: https://data.bls.gov/timeseries/CUSR0000SA0
CPI Monthly changes: https://data.bls.gov/timeseries/CUSR0000SA0?output_view=pct_1mth

Core CPI Index: http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/CUSR0000SA0L1E
Core CPI Monthly Changes: http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/CUSR0000SA0L1E&output_view=pct_1mth

To view 3 month changes, 6 month changes, year-over-year changes of data.bls.gov time series, click on "More Formatting Options" on the upper right, and check the appropriate checkboxes.

Real average hourly earnings of production and non-supervisory workers http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/CES0500000032

Real average hourly earnings of private sector workers http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/CES0500000013

A more reliable gauge of wages and salaries:

So real wages and salaries have finally turned up in the last 2 quarters.

The last reading is 3.7% below the peak, and 3.4% below the Q1.2021 value.

Source: https://fredblog.stlouisfed.org/2018/02/are-wages-increasing-or-decreasing

Unfortunately the Employment Cost Index comes out only once a quarter. So we will have to wait until July to get the next quarterly report.

Jackie Little, suspected in mosque fires, vandalizing Rep. Ilhan Omar's office, arrested

Jackie Little, suspected in mosque fires, vandalizing Rep. Ilhan Omar's office, arrested and facing federal charge, WCCO News, 4/30/23

The suspect who allegedly set two fires at mosques in south Minneapolis last week has been arrested and now faces a federal arson charge, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office in Minnesota.

Jackie Little, 36, was charged by warrant earlier this week in Hennepin County in connection with a fire at Masjid Al Rahma Islamic Center.

A federal complaint accuses Little of starting a fire in the bathroom at the Masjid Omar Islamic Center April 23, as well as in a hallway at Masjid Al Rahma a day later. A representative of Masjid Al Rahma told investigators the fire caused "tens of thousands of dollars" in damages, the complaint states.

Per the complaint, Little's mother told investigators he "extensively harassed a Muslim female" in the past and "has had a fascination with fire from a young age." She said she suspected him in "several unreported arson events."

Little's mother identified him in surveillance footage of the arsons. Plymouth police also recognized Little from a previous arson investigation.

More: https://www.cbsnews.com/minnesota/news/minneapolis-mosque-fires-suspect-arrested/

-The article also discusses the vandalizing of Rep. Ilhan Omar's office

-CAIR (Minnesota Council on American-Islamic Relations) has gotten enough in donations to hire a full-time professional who will work with the 92 mosques in the state to apply for grants for safety measures

-Little will make his first court appearance Monday (that's today). Pic below.

- Good news video at the link

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