Posts Tagged ‘u.s. commerce department’

U.S. Economy Nosedived In First Quarter

May 30th, 2015 Comments off


The Commerce Department released revised data for the U.S. economy in Q1 of 2015. Instead of the disappointing 0.2 percent contraction, the Commerce Department is now reporting that America’s GDP contracted by a far worse 0.7 percent. This rate of negative growth clearly reveals severe and lingering weaknesses in the nation’s economic health, seven years after the onset of the global economic crisis.

As is usual, the pundits are blaming the weather, a rising dollar, the Greek debt crisis, everything but the kitchen sink. They also promise a strong rebound in Q2. However, what the pundits ignore is that the first quarter also witnessed a severe fall in oil prices, a factor that was predicted to be highly stimulating for the national economy and GDP growth. It seems that fundamental vulnerabilities still  ail the U.S. economy, a reality that simply cannot be ignored or spun away.



Hillary Clinton is running for President of the United States  in 2016. See the video about the book that warned back in 2008 what a second Clinton presidency would mean for the USA:



Hillary Clinton Nude

Hillary Clinton Nude

U.S. Economy Loses Steam; GDP Growth Stalls

April 30th, 2015 Comments off

Data released by the U.S. Commerce Department reveals that GDP growth in the United States contracted to an almost flat 0.2 percent in Q1 of 2015. This is virtually stall speed, and a sharp contrast to last summer, when officials proclaimed that America’s economy was experiencing sustained high GDP growth.

Typically, the policymakers and government officials will come up with a multitude of explanations for this poor measure of the American economy. No matter the spin, however, this is bad economic news, which surprised the most somber predictions of the experts.



If Hillary Clinton runs for President of the United States  in 2016, see the video about the book that warned back in 2008 what a second Clinton presidency would mean for the USA:



Hillary Clinton Nude

Hillary Clinton Nude


U.S. Economy Was In Slowdown In Final Quarter of 2014

January 31st, 2015 Comments off

The U.S. Commerce Department’s Bureau of Economic Analysis  has released its initial figures for the final quarter of 2014; GDP grew by 2.6 percent, a disappointing showing after the Q3 results supposedly showed 5 percent GDP growth. Several observers were skeptical of the 5 percent number for Q3, which was the basis for the Obama administration proclaiming victory and the return of economic prosperity in the United States.  Even if the Q3 number was correct,  overall GDP growth in the U.S. economy, based on official figures, was 2.4 percent for all of 2014.

While the official GDP growth figures for 2014 indicate the fastest level of economic growth in the U.S. since the global economic and financial crisis arose in 2008, it is still a very weak number after six years of a supposed recovery, and after trillions of dollars of deficit spending and vast monetary easing by the Federal Reserve in a frantic effort to stimulate the American economy. And now, Europe and even China are facing a slowdown, and in the case of the Eurozone, probable recession, likely to be exacerbated by the looming conflict with Greece over the terms of that nation’s financial bailout.

The U.S. is not immune to what is happening elsewhere in an era of interconnected economics. The lackluster growth figures for Q4 is a clear sign of that.


If Hillary Clinton runs for President of the United States  in 2016, see the video about the book that warned back in 2008 what a second Clinton presidency would mean for the USA:



Hillary Clinton Nude

Hillary Clinton Nude


U.S. Economy Contracted By Nearly Three percent In First Quarter of 2014

June 25th, 2014 Comments off

Blame it on the weather, the pundits are already chiming. But no amount of verbal acrobatics can disguise the fact that the U.S. economy experienced its worst performance in Q1 of 2014 since the dark days of 2009, following in the wake of the global economic and financial crisis. According to the U.S. Commerce Department, revised figures show the American economy contracted at a rate far worse than the originally reported decline of 1 percent; the updated figure is a  contraction in the first quarter of 2.9 percent.

The same spin masters claiming this very bad performance for the U.S. economy was due to unusually cold weather are already predicting a very strong rebound in the next quarter. However, if one looks deeply at the data released by the Commerce Department, a big factor in the Q1 contraction was a decline of 8.9 percent in exports. What is left unexplained by the “experts” is how a contraction in exports by nearly nine percent was created by cold weather conditions.

If Hillary Clinton runs for President of the United States  in 2016, see the video about the book that warned back in 2008 what a second Clinton presidency would mean for the USA:



Hillary Clinton Nude

Hillary Clinton Nude

U.S. Economy Performing Much Worse Than Earlier Reported

July 31st, 2011 Comments off

The U.S. Commerce Department issued revised figures for the first quarter of 2011. It had earlier reported an annual rate of anemic GDP growth of 1.9 percent for Q1. Even if that number had been accurate, it was insufficient to reverse the catastrophic rate of unemployment and underemployment in the United States. The revised numbers are now in; the Commerce Department now says that actual GDP growth in the first quarter of 2011 was a virtually non-existent 0.4 percent. It also issued preliminary growth figures for Q2 of 1.3 percent, worse than expected. As with the Q1 data, it is likely that future revisions will show that Q2 did even worse.

What conclusions can one draw from this miserable economic data? Two things come to mind. In the first place, any preliminary numbers on the U.S. economy that derive from official government sources are highly suspect, and likely to be overly optimistic. Secondly, after an unprecedented level of public debt that is leading America towards fiscal ruin, the best that can be accomplished by the Washington policymakers is a Japanese-style “L” shaped recession. 

Now, what happens to the U.S. economy when the pump-priming stops, as will inevitably happen?  With revenue at historic lows and public expenditures at unprecedented highs as a proportion of the national economy, the frail American  economic edifice is floating on an ocean of unsustainable debt. While the current fiscal trajectory of the United States is headed towards a calamitous train wreck, a self-imposed and immediate elimination of the deficit, or even talk of such a possibility, will further exacerbate the economic crisis that never ended in America, despite official pronouncements.

 In the meantime, the U.S. political establishment cheerfully debates the debt ceiling. Both sides of the argument are in denial. The bottom line that both Republicans and Democrats refuse to confront is that the authorship of the present economic and fiscal crisis is bipartisan. The only hope of avoiding a full-fledged American sovereign debt crisis and its apocalyptic ramifications is creating a path towards much higher levels of growth that will reduce the ratio of debt to GDP to levels that can be sustained into the future. Instead of a serious policy debate, however, both parties are engaged in an ideological debate on cloud nine, divorced from the miserable reality of an American economy that is imploding.

If this is not an indication of dysfunction in Washington, I don’t know what is. Maybe the policymakers are not worried because they know that Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke will soon ramp up his printing press again. I am more inclined towards the vision of Dante than Bernanke, when it comes to the future of the U.S. economy.





U.S. New Home Sales in Free Fall; American Housing Market on Verge of Collapse

August 26th, 2010 Comments off

In the wake of the disastrous existing home sales data for July, reported on in my previous blog comment, the Commerce Department released figures for U.S. new home sales for July. They have declined 12.4% from the prior month. More ominously, these figures, when compared with July 2009, reflect a contraction of nearly one third in new home sales. Remember, July of last year was already experiencing a dismal level of new home purchases.

The July new home sales in the United States came in at the poorest level since 1963, reflecting an annual rate of 276,000 sales. To put this number in context, in 1963 the American population was 190 million versus more than 300 million in 2010.

The combination of record contractions in existing and new home sales in the U.S. is indicative of a housing market that, far from recovering, is on the verge of the next phase of a deep collapse. The earlier collapse stemmed from subprime mortgages that defaulted, crippling the global financial system. The second phase is being driven by high unemployment, with no signs of an early turnaround. In this situation, one must be an obtuse optimist to believe that the banks and  investment houses will be immune from the impact of what is clearly an accelerating collapse in the residential real  estate market in the United States.

GDP Falls 3.8% In U.S. As Economic Meltdown Worsens

January 31st, 2009 Comments off
The U.S. Commerce Department has released preliminary figures for the 4th quarter of 2008, heralding a decline of 3.8% in GDP. As many analysts had forecast a Q4 contraction of at least 5%, on the surface the official figures could be perhaps spun by those taken to wishful thinking as “not as bad as feared.” Several headlines in the financial press actually conveyed this myopic fantasy. However, for once, even the usual Wall Street cheerleaders were not fooled by the “not as bad as we thought” mantra. In the first place, they know the government’s figures are preliminary and, like the unemployment numbers, are likely to be adjusted upwards once complete data for the last quarter is fully tabulated. Secondly, even the Commerce Department’s numbers indicate that the economic contraction in the world’s largest economy is much worse than negative 3.8 %.
The gap between what analysts predicted and what the government reported is explained by a statistical anomaly whereby expanding inventories of unsold goods are counted as “growth.” The growth of inventories “added” 1.3% to the GDP. This book-keeping exercise in imagined growth is due to the simple fact that consumer demand in the United States declined at a faster rate than businesses could cut back production and delivery. However, the lag between production and demand will not persist much longer, evidenced by the tsunami of employee layoffs that are now sweeping the United States. What this suggests is that the negative downturn for the first quarter of 2009 will be even more severe than otherwise.

Had the expansion of unsold or unwanted inventory not been factored in as GDP growth, than the Commerce Department would have reported a GDP decline of 5.1% for Q4 of 2008. It is likely that Q1 of 2009 will reveal an acceleration of GDP contraction of the American economy. is projecting that complete tabulation for the first quarter of 2009 will reveal a GDP contraction in the range of 6-7%.

What do these economic statistics mean in real terms? The answer is clear; the U.S. economy is in terminal free-fall. Even with the passage of the Obama stimulus plan, at best the U.S. can temporarily arrest 1-2% off the rate of annual GDP contraction. However, further erosion of the U.S. fiscal posture resulting from exploding structural deficits and the cumulative national debt will rapidly negate the very temporary boost from the stimulus package, while facilitating further catastrophic macroeconomic destruction.

The implosion of the world’s largest economy will ensure that the Global Economic Crisis is acute and of long duration. Policy responses thus far from political leaders and the financial elites that influence them are about as encouraging or realistic as inflating the U.S. GDP figures by counting the accumulation of unsold goods as evidence of economic growth and expansion. It appears that those in power have not learned much from the recent experience of counting subprime mortgage-backed securities as solid and secure assets.