Another Bump Higher

In one of our recent updates on the weakness in the manufacturing sector we have mentioned the surge in the sum of charge-offs and delinquencies of commercial and industrial loans at US banks (hat tip to our friend BC, who inspired the chart below). As we were arguing at the time, this is a sign that inflationary US bank credit expansion to businesses will likely continue to stall and as a result US money supply growth should continue to decelerate.

It turns out that this particular growth rate has recently increased further:

 

Charge-offs and DelinquenciesGrowth in charge-offs and delinquencies in commercial and industrial loans (black line, left hand scale) continues to accelerate – in spite of the fact that the Federal Funds rate (red line, rhs) has officially not even been hiked yet – click to enlarge.

 

What makes this chart so interesting is that similar accelerations in charge-offs and delinquencies have previously occurred shortly before recessions, whereby “shortly” is an elastic term: the lead times are obviously varying from case to case. Noteworthy is also the speed of the recent acceleration in this trend. We don’t think this is a good sign for the US economy.

 

Transportation Sector Woes

Note in this context also that the economically highly sensitive transportation sector has recently been mercilessly stomped on in the stock market. This is a sector in which stock prices are now clearly following the worrisome deterioration in fundamentals.

 

TransportsThe Dow Jones Transportation Average has once again broken through technical support levels (there was both lateral and trend-line support at the 8,000 level) – click to enlarge.

 

We have first discussed the increasingly suspect situation of the transportation sector back in July of this year (see:Transportation Sector in Trouble – What are the Implications? for details). In the meantime, things have gone from bad to worse, as international trade data, as well as data from railroads and trucking companies confirm (see also the recent sharp slump in rail car orders).

Given the highly cyclical nature of this sector, we take its woes as confirmation that the economy is probably far weaker than is generally assumed. As we have mentioned previously, although there is no recession in sight yet in terms of the official definition of same, it appears to us that the loss of momentum in sectors such as shale oil (and commodities more generally) as well as in manufacturing is actually very disquieting. If things were the other way around – weakness in the services sector accompanied by strength in manufacturing – we would be far less concerned about the probability of a recession being fairly imminent.

It is deeply ironic that the Fed is finally about to implement a tiny (and largely meaningless) rate hike, just as this slowdown is taking shape – based on a lagging indicator, that doesn’t look all that great anyway if one looks at it more closely (we are of course referring to employment – see this recent incisive analysis by David Stockman).

 

Conclusion

More signs that the economy is actually not all that well. It may yet recover on its own (believe it or not, but from a historical perspective the data in their totality are not yet decisive), but we think this is a very low probability scenario at this stage. There is likely already way too much malinvested capital in need of a significant purge.

Moreover, the economy’s pool of real funding has in our opinion been under strain (of varying intensity) since at least the year 2000. Although the pool of real savings cannot be measured, we can make educated guesses about its state by inference from other data points. If money supply expansion in the US does slow down further (as we suspect it will), an economic bust will become a near certainty.

 

Charts by: St. Louis Federal Reserve Research, StockCharts

 

 
 

Emigrate While You Can... Learn More

 
 

 
 

Dear Readers!

You may have noticed that our so-called “semiannual” funding drive, which started sometime in the summer if memory serves, has seamlessly segued into the winter. In fact, the year is almost over! We assure you this is not merely evidence of our chutzpa; rather, it is indicative of the fact that ad income still needs to be supplemented in order to support upkeep of the site. Naturally, the traditional benefits that can be spontaneously triggered by donations to this site remain operative regardless of the season - ranging from a boost to general well-being/happiness (inter alia featuring improved sleep & appetite), children including you in their songs, up to the likely allotment of privileges in the afterlife, etc., etc., but the Christmas season is probably an especially propitious time to cross our palms with silver. A special thank you to all readers who have already chipped in, your generosity is greatly appreciated. Regardless of that, we are honored by everybody's readership and hope we have managed to add a little value to your life.

   

Bitcoin address: 1DRkVzUmkGaz9xAP81us86zzxh5VMEhNke

   
 

One Response to “Corporate Loan Charge-Offs and Delinquencies Surge”

  • zerobs:

    There is likely already way too much malinvested capital in need of a significant purge.

    Of course, that is actually step #1 of a true recovery.

    But living up to her title, “Doctor” Yellen is more interested in masking symptoms and “managing” a sick patient rather than actually delivering a cure and turning a sick patient into a well one.

    So a meaningless rate hike – if it has any effect at all it would be positive – will instead be blamed for the significant purge of malinvested capital that has already been underway already (if not significant enough for the ostriches to notice). The economy is in dire need of a purge but the last meaningless action will be labelled an emetic – then we will be given multiple rounds of dyspepsia “medicine” to mask the symptoms. Instead of vomiting out our bad economic humors, we will be forced to take a drug to ensure we keep the economic food poisoning IN our system which will only keep us from feeling the sensation of critical organ damage.

Your comment:

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Most read in the last 20 days:

  • Modi’s Great Leap Forward
      India’s Currency Ban – Part VIII India’s Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, announced on 8th November 2016 that Rs 500 (~$7.50) and Rs 1,000 (~$15) banknotes would no longer be legal tender. Linked are Part-I, Part-II, Part-III, Part-IV, Part-V, Part-VI and Part-VII, which provide updates on the demonetization saga and how Modi is acting as a catalyst to hasten the rapid degradation of India and what remains of its institutions.   India’s Pride and Joy   Indians are...
  • Global Recession and Other Visions for 2017
      Conjuring Up Visions Today’s a day for considering new hopes, new dreams, and new hallucinations.  The New Year is here, after all.  Now is the time to turn over a new leaf and start afresh. Naturally, 2017 will be the year you get exactly what’s coming to you. Both good and bad.  But what else will happen?   Image of a recently discarded vision... Image by Michael Del Mundo   Here we begin by closing our eyes and slowing our breath.  We let our mind...
  • US Financial Markets – Alarm Bells are Ringing
      A Shift in Expectations When discussing the outlook for so-called “risk assets”, i.e., mainly stocks and corporate bonds (particularly low-grade bonds) and their counterparts on the “safe haven” end of the spectrum (such as gold and government bonds with strong ratings), one has to consider different time frames and the indicators applicable to these time frames. Since Donald Trump's election victory, there have been sizable moves in stocks, gold and treasury bonds, as the election...
  • The Great El Monte Public Pension Swindle
      Nowhere City California There are places in Southern California where, although the sun always shines, they haven’t seen a ray of light for over 50-years.  There’s a no man’s land of urban blight along Interstate 10, from East Los Angeles through the San Gabriel Valley, where cities you’ve never heard of and would never go to, are jumbled together like shipping containers on Terminal Island.  El Monte, California, is one of those places.   Advice dispensed on Interstate...
  • A Trade Deal Trump Cannot Improve
      Worst in Class BALTIMORE – People can believe whatever they want. But sooner or later, real life intervenes. We just like to see the looks on their faces when it does. By that measure, 2017 may be our best year ever. Rarely have so many people believed so many impossible things.   Alice laughed. "There's no use trying," she said: "one can't believe impossible things." "I daresay you haven't had much practice," said the Queen. "When I was your age, I always did it for...
  • Pope Francis Now International Monetary Guru
      Neo-Marxist Pope Francis Argues for Global Central Bank As the new year dawns, it seems the current occupant of St. Peter’s Chair will take on a new function which is outside the purview of the office that the Divine Founder of his institution had clearly mandated.   Neo-Papist transmogrification. We highly recommend the economic thought of one of Francis' storied predecessors, John Paul II, which we have written about on previous occasions. In “A Tale of Two Popes” and...
  • Where’s the Outrage?
      Blind to Crony Socialism Whenever a failed CEO is fired with a cushy payoff, the outrage is swift and voluminous.  The liberal press usually misrepresents this as a hypocritical “jobs for the boys” program within the capitalist class.  In reality, the payoffs are almost always contractual obligations, often for deferred compensation, that the companies vigorously try to avoid.  Believe me.  I’ve been on both sides of this kind of dispute (except, of course, for the “failed”...
  • Trump’s Trade Catastrophe?
      “Trade Cheaters” It is worse than “voodoo economics,” says former Treasury Secretary Larry Summers. It is the “economic equivalent of creationism.” Wait a minute -  Larry Summers is wrong about almost everything. Could he be right about this?   Larry Summers, the man who is usually wrong about almost everything. As we have always argued, the economy is much safer when he sleeps, so his tendency to fall asleep on all sorts of occasions should definitely be welcomed....
  • Money Creation and the Boom-Bust Cycle
      A Difference of Opinions In his various writings, Murray Rothbard argued that in a free market economy that operates on a gold standard, the creation of credit that is not fully backed up by gold (fractional-reserve banking) sets in motion the menace of the boom-bust cycle. In his The Case for 100 Percent Gold Dollar Rothbard wrote:   I therefore advocate as the soundest monetary system and the only one fully compatible with the free market and with the absence of force or fraud...
  • Trump’s Plan to Close the Trade Deficit with China
      Rags to Riches Jack Ma is an amiable fellow.  Back in 1994, while visiting the United States he decided to give that newfangled internet thing a whirl.  At a moment of peak inspiration, he executed his first search engine request by typing in the word beer.   Jack Ma, founder and CEO of Alibaba, China's largest e-commerce firm. Once he was a school teacher, but it turned out that he had enormous entrepreneurial talent and that the world of wheelers, dealers, movers and...
  • Side Notes, January 14 - Red Flags Over Goldman Sachs
      Red Flags Over Goldman Sachs Just to prove that I am an even-handed insulter, here is a rant about my former employer, Goldman Sachs. The scandal at 1MDB, the Malaysian sovereign wealth fund from which it appears that billions were stolen by politicians all the way up to the Prime Minister, continues to unfold.   The main players in the 1MDB scandal. Irony alert: apparently money siphoned off from 1MDB was used to inter alia finance Martin Scorcese's movie “The Wolf of...
  • Silver’s Got Fundamentals - Precious Metals Supply-Demand Report
      Supply-Demand Fundamentals Improve Noticeably Last week was another short week, due to the New Year holiday. We look forward to getting back to our regularly scheduled market action.   Photo via thedailycoin.org   The prices of both metals moved up again this week. Something very noticeable is occurring in the supply and demand fundamentals. We will give an update on that, but first, here’s the graph of the metals’ prices.   Prices of gold and silver...

Austrian Theory and Investment

Support Acting Man

Own physical gold and silver outside a bank

Archive

j9TJzzN

350x200

Realtime Charts

 

Gold in USD:

[Most Recent Quotes from www.kitco.com]

 


 

Gold in EUR:

[Most Recent Quotes from www.kitco.com]

 


 

Silver in USD:

[Most Recent Quotes from www.kitco.com]

 


 

Platinum in USD:

[Most Recent Quotes from www.kitco.com]

 


 

USD - Index:

[Most Recent USD from www.kitco.com]

 

THE GOLD CARTEL: Government Intervention on Gold, the Mega Bubble in Paper and What This Means for Your Future

 
Buy Silver Now!
 
Buy Gold Now!
 

Oilprice.com