Did You Know? The US dollar surged to its highest level in two decades as investors ramped up bets that aggressive interest rate rises from the Federal Reserve will leave other big central banks trailing far in its wake. (Bloomberg)
Here are some prices from 1980 - just 42 years ago - to better understand how inflation has been around forever.....
Average Income: $19,173/year.....today its around $53,490...up about 275%
New House: $68,714....today median is $392,000....up over 550%
New Car: $7,201...today it's about $46,000...up over 600%
Average Rent: $300/month...today it's about $1,295/month....up over 425%
Harvard Tuition: $5,300/year...today it $51,143.....up over 950%
Gasoline: $1.19/gallon....today it's $4.14/gallon...up almost 350%
....which may showcase how education inflation makes gas inflation appear....low?
Did You Know? AMAZON saw online sales decline in the first quarter of 2022: is the shop-from-home craze waning now that COVID is waning? Most of Amazon's losses came from their investment in electric truck maker Rivian. Amazon doubled its workforce during the pandemic, growing from 798,000 employees at the end of 2019 to 1.62 million at the end of the first quarter of 2022....DOUBLED! An investment in the future perhaps? Like Google and Facebook earlier this week, Amazon is attributing much of the slowdown to macroeconomic conditions and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Did You Know? China's COVID-related lockdowns are almost certain to impact global supply chains....and potentially further fuel global inflation. Lockdowns could impact commodity demand - and prices - which may offset some of the inflationary pressures. China's unpopular lockdown policy may be better understood by China's extremely low vaccination rates amongst the most vulnerable - the elderly - and it has very limited intensive care capacity. Their vaccine is not terribly effective either. Managing a 10 million-person-plus city is very different from a 1 million person city.... Beijing's population is around 21 million…..
Did You Know? While everyone thinks high inflation will continue, Paul Krugman frets that, if anything, the central bank is overreacting to inflation. Surging gas prices accounted for about half of March’s price rise, but it now appears that the world oil market overshot in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Krugman speaks to the 'bullwhip effect' where a surge in interest in a specific product causes prices to surge.....temporarily....till that demand wanes and normalizes.
Did You Know? The NASDAQ average is down around 20% for 2022.....but let us not forget that the NASDAQ is still up about 45% in the past 2 years....and up over 53% in three years. Excessive gains are usually likely to adjust.
Did You Know? The hottest job markets in the US are in 5 different states, all in midsize cities, all with a population under 2.3 million. They’re in states with fairly low income taxes, or none at all. And their climates allow for outdoor activities all year round. They are: Austin, TX; Nashville, TN.; Raleigh, N.C.; Salt Lake City; and Jacksonville, Fla. All of the top 5 cities are home to large universities, state capitals or high-tech employers. Florida, Texas and Tennessee have no personal state income tax, while North Carolina and Utah have income and corporate tax rates of roughly 5% or less. The larger cities - Miami, Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, Dallas, Atlanta, Washington DC - all had one thing in common: less hot job markets than smaller cities....but all much hotter than the job markets in 2019. (Moodys/WSJ)
Did You Know? In 2021 reports showed that over 70% of the 400 richest people in the U.S. and 88% of millionaires are self-made. I absolutely LOVE this. (WSJ)