Post 213

A snapshot of what’s going on in the world’s economy.  Financial Ructions and book reviews can be a bit more technical so feel free to skip them.  See disclaimer at the end of this note.

Summary

  • A lot of companies are reporting.
  • Groceries and healthcare doing well.
  • Discretionary items not so much.
  • More price over volume.
  • Overall, consumers are finding it tough.
  • Pizza and beer sales are slowing in the US: This is getting serious.
  • Germany seems to be phasing from disinflation (prices rising but not as fast) to outright deflation (falling prices).
  • Barbie picks up the pieces.
  • High-end of the luxury market (Hermes) is still soaring, while plain ole luxury (Gucci) is falling.
  • Facebook and Spotify on fire.
  • Government deficits are out of control, but rather than look for ways to reduce government and cut spending, governments are searching for ways to increase tax revenue; spoiler alert, it’s not by putting in place policies that will promote greater productivity.
  • Mortgage payments in the US are now considerably higher than rent payments, despite the fact that rent has also risen significantly.
  • Higher interest rates are relentlessly squeezing the economy