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Retail collapse continues as Sears and Payless fall victim to declining consumer spending

Over the past three years, January has brought about a number of long-standing retail chains shuttering dozens if not hundreds of locations, and laying off thousands of workers.  And 2017 was no exception as the severe decline in retail traffic that began to show up in earnest last March is culminating in perhaps the final days of two retail icons. On March 22 both Sears and Payless (shoes) filed business s ...

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Huge decline for industrial production adds more credence U.S. economy is now in recession

By all historic measures the U.S. economy has probably been in a continuous recession since 2000 following the collapse of the Dot Com bubble, and most definitely with their entry into what became known as The Great Recession following the 2008 financial crisis.  And by historically we are of course referring to data modeling based on 1980 measures rather than on today's government reporting which has exper ...

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Atlanta Fed drops Q1 GDP again as indicators continue to scream economy is in recession

On March 15, just hours before the Fed's FOMC meeting culminated in the central bank raising interest rates once again, the Atlanta regional Fed bank lowered its forecast for Q1 GDP to below 1% validating further belief that the U.S. economy is severely slowing down in 2017. After reporting an estimate for the GDP of 1.2% just two weeks ago, the Atlanta Fed updated their newest estimate to .9% following two ...

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As consumer spending falls off a cliff and consumer debt gets maxed out, FICO scores set to change to make borrowing easier

Back between 2004 and 2008, the financial system's desire to get anyone into a home was so great that even if you didn't have a job or couldn't afford a home, lenders would manipulate applications so that those below the poverty line were able to purchase $600,000 and higher McMansions. Now in 2017 when once again many American are maxed out on their debt limits and consumer spending is falling off a cliff, ...

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Be careful what you wish for, because you might just get it as inflation has now gotten out of control for central banks

For nearly a decade the Federal Reserve, along with nearly every other central bank in the industrialized world, has used zero or negative interest rates to try to bring about annual asset inflation to a designated benchmark of 2%.  And while they claimed that almost every year since the 2008 Financial Crisis that inflation has remained below this number, their monetary policies have finally reached a point ...

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The coming week could create more economic chaos than Brexit

This coming week will see some of the most important economic and political decisions taking place in perhaps the last 9 years, coinciding also with the historic negative frequency that is often attributed to the 'Ides of March'. March 15 will see the Federal Reserve decide whether they will begin a trek towards aggressively raising interest rates at a time when every real economic indicator is screaming re ...

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President Trump still committed to reinstating Glass-Steagall

Despite many conservatives who desperately want to see the banks broken up under the new administration of Donald Trump, repealing parts of the Dodd-Frank banking reform act is only a small part in undoing legislation that had allowed banks and bankers to continue in the same risky speculations that led to the 2008 financial crisis. In fact, to protect the economy and the taxpayer from future bailouts, Pres ...

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European think tank puts EU on a path to collapse much greater than the 2008 financial crisis

Despite the unprecedented amount of money spent by both sovereign governments and central banks to bailout financial institutions over the past eight years, a new report from a European think tank has determined that the state of Europe's financial system right now is worse than in 2008, and on the path to a much greater collapse than what nearly occurred during the crisis of that year. Measuring the years ...

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FDIC closes down third bank of 2017 in the state of Utah

On March 3, the FDIC closed down their third bank for 2017 as Proficio Bank shuttered its doors.  This institution is the first bank failure for the month of March, and the first Utah bank closure since November of 2011. 3/3/2017 *** Utah *** Cottonwood Heights *** Proficio Bank *** $11.0 million dollar estimated FDIC DIF cost. The total DIF for failed banks this week is $11.0 million. If you were banking a ...

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Trump's first month in office sees the lowest number of initial jobless claims in 44 years

Whether the real data continues to show severe underlying problems in the U.S. economy, one thing is for certain... the optimism by the American people that things will get better under President Trump is running very high.  And perhaps this can be seen in no better light when on March 2 the first report under Trump's new administration regarding initial jobless claims came out, and the results showed a dec ...

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New York union pension fund goes insolvent, becoming the first in what is expected to be a domino effect

While several public and private pension funds in the U.S. have had to enforce changes due to massive underfunding, on Feb. 28 a New York Local Teamsters pension fund officially went insolvent and now their member retirees will have to take less in monthly benefits through the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation. Cited as the first pension fund in the U.S. to completely run out of money, this event is expe ...

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Consumer debt levels equaling or surpassing that of 2008 just prior to financial crash

When the housing bubble burst back in 2007, many Americans had not only been induced to purchase homes that were beyond their means to pay using sub-prime borrowing, but they also had borrowed against the rising equity in those homes as the housing market reached its apex.  And the subsequent crash meant that millions of Americans would end up losing these homes, and have to carry a massive debt load into w ...

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