It Will Help You Save The Bacon if You Smell a Rat in the Jobs Report

When you average December’s blowout jobs number, which few foresaw, with November’s weak number, which nobody foresaw, what do you get?

Nothing.

That’s right, nothing. The average of the two months isn’t materially different than the average gain of the past year, or the past 7 years for that matter. This was much ado about nothing.  

But as the Wall Street Journal put it,

Strong U.S. Job and Wage Growth Provides Assurance on Economy

Employers added 312,000 jobs last month and 2.64 million in 2018, the best year since 2015

Wow! They sure were excited. It was a perfect excuse for them to be bullish, when I would have thought that more jobs would keep the Fed on a tightening path, which is bearish.

Fed Chairman Jerome Powell disabused us of that notion later in the day. In a panel discussion with his predecessors, Jerome went all soft hearted on us and announced that Fed balance sheet “normalization” (a euphemism for tightening) wouldn’t be on autopilot after all. Now that’s not the same as saying they would print, but the market took it as a gift, which it most assuredly isn’t.

Here’s why it isn’t, and what you should do about it.


Beware of How The False Market Narrative Works To Separate You From Your Money

Every day the financial infotainment media feels obligated to come up with a reason for that day’s gyrations in the stock market. Since I’m in France these days, I like to call it the “raison du jour.”  It’s kind of like the daily special at the local lunch counter, the soup du jour. Only it’s not  the “soup of the day;” it’s the reason of the day. Or more often, the “excuse du jour.” No need to translate that!

Lately, the excuse du jou, has been the idea that investors are worried about a weakening economy. Now, the Wall Street PR flacks usually modify that as a weakening global economy, and certainly, I’ve seen plenty of evidence for that in my regular tracking of European banking system data for many months. So there’s some truth in that.

Whether it’s the impetus for the US stock market downtrend, is another matter. You know what I think. It’s not the economy, it’s the liquidity!

But what about the excuse du jour for the bond market rally and the crash in US Treasury yields. The rationale, or what’s commonly called the market “narrative,” for that is that the US economy is weakening, and that that will lead to lower inflation, lower bond yields, and looser Fed policy.

Is there any truth to that narrative, and should it matter to us as stock investors and traders? Because if it’s not true, then Wall Street is leading you down the garden path, as always doing its best to separate you from your money.

Lucky for you, you’re reading Sure Money and have access to the best data there is to assess the current state of the US economy. What makes it even better than conventional economic data is that it’s real time, it’s unmassaged, and nobody, but nobody pays any attention to it except us! So we are able to stay ahead of the crowd.

So let’s take a look at it!


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