Global economic indicators

I can’t find an existing thread on this, so here goes.

I think that the recovery in Ireland is going to come from external sources ( :unamused: ). So I think it is worth tracking the state of the world economy.

To start with, fxstreet is reporting German factory orders down 6.9% (seasonally adjusted) vs consensus of down 2.5%. Down 25.1% (nsa) YoY.

ECB maintain interest rates at 2% while the BoE dropped from 1.5 to 1% today.

IMF today warned that the US housing downturn may deepen and last longer than previously forecast and the slump could spread to other countries.House prices could continue to plummet through 2010.

Here are a few links to economic indicators which are maintained daily, weekly, or monthly as the data allows.

New York Fed - official figures from around the world … ators.html

International Resources - links to a large number of sites with economic indicators … cators.htm

Economic indicators are generally taken to mean statistics but ar enot limited to that.

“Non-scientific and humourous indicators
From time to time, people have observed behavioral patterns that they declare to be economic indicators of a sort. One of the earliest was the Hemline index, proposed by the economist George Taylor in 1926. The theory suggests that hemlines on women’s dresses rise and fall along with stock prices.”

At least we can look forward to the stock market recovery!! 8) … 2ee.0.html
A Great Depression for industry

*  German industrial production down 27% yoy, Spanish industrial production down 20%, and further declines expected until at least mid-year;
* Mass layoffs likely in Germany unless industry turns the corner by mid-year;
* FT Deutschland says in editorial that this steep drop in production is the revenge for the country's beggar-thy-neighbour policy, and refusal to co-coordinate;
* South Korean exports are down 32.8%, a sign that global trade has effectively collapsed;situation in Taiwan is even worse;
* European Central Bank left interest rates unchanged, but effectively pre-announces a rate cut in March; softens its stance on ZIRP;
* Nicholas Sarkozy went on television yesterday, and looked very presidential; other than that, he announced the end of an unpopular local business tax;
* Irish government is finalising a deal to protect struggling homeowners;
* The Flemish, outraged over the bilangual status of one of its communes, are threatening to boycott the European elections;
* Moody's has downgraded three large Greek banks due to over-exposure in Bulgaria and Romania.

Another resource:
fxstreet economic indicators calendar

OECD leading indicators (February):
(Courtesy of FTAlphaville)

FTAlphaville quote Albert Edwards of SocGen: … epression/

Note: Mr. Edwards has been unfailingly bearish for the best part of two years… and so unfailingly right. See here from last September: … nd-part-2/

Just been looking at FTAlphaville when you posted that. The stuff on that site today is frightening regarding economic news.
Had to take a break from reading it… … t-tsunami/

Japan’s job-cut tsunami

Spanish Production Falls 20%, Bankruptcies Quadruple (Update2) … .wcIsW5GDE

And Spain Isn’t Far Behind … ar-behind/

…''Employers slashed 598,000 jobs in January, the deepest cut in payrolls in 34 years as the national unemployment rate shot up to 7.6 percent, according to a Labor Department report on Friday that underlined a deepening recession.

January’s job losses were worse than the 525,000 that had been forecast by Wall Street economists, who also had expected the unemployment rate to come in lower at 7.5 percent.‘’…

please provide a link next time windy: … BU20090206

Merged windy’s US unemployment figures into here.

From Acrossthecurve: … feb09.html

So, adjusting for population, does that mean the equivalent number for Ireland in January would be 2.7 million jobs? … erage.html

We were all so focused on the house price bubble that we failed to spot the truly humongous bubble that has burst and is causing all this carnage. As yoganmahew brilliantly named it, the Bling-und-tat Bubble.

The house price bubble, it could be argued, was merely a symptom, a shadow cast by the true bubble. House prices had to soar in order to generate the feel-good, spendspendspend, MEWing that fed the Bling-und-tat bubble. The Rise Of China, yet again, a mere symptom. The oil & food & commodities bubbles, yet again, mere symptoms and side-effects of the One Bubble.

I’m humbled by this realisation.

The logical long-term consequences though are I think refreshingly positive for humanity and the planet.

French industrial production down by 1.6%

Latest figure from INSEE show French industrial production to fall by 1.6% qoq (or 8.6% yoy) in the fourth quarter 2008, a steep decline not seen since 1974, reports Les Echos. In an opinion poll industrialists revised their forecasts downwards, expecting now a 12% fall in investment for 2009. This would not the worst outcome in French history, but Les Echos warns that so far the figures turned out to be much worse than expected. … 75a.0.html … f85.0.html

China exports fall 17.5%

This is worse than expected, and underlines a wider trend that the speed with which global trade has collasped is much worse that forecast. The 17.5% drop in exports in January follows the 2.5% drop in December. Imports were down 43.1%, a reflection of falling demand for raw materials used in manufacturing, and falling commodity prices. Naked Capitalism notes that China’s central bank made the cut in the savings rate an official policy goal.

The US trade deficit is falling

Global imbalances are adjusting, slowly and in an undesirable way. Brad Setser has the analysis behind the fall in the US trade deficit, which is now $40bn a month, down from its peak of $60bn. (The fall is much less than what market had expected, however) As the trade deficit is a good proxy for the current account deficit, this points towards a $500bn current account deficit for 2009, some 3% of GPD. Setser makes the point that given the dollar it is unlikely that the improvement in the US current account deficit will continue, and he notes that the US deficit is almost exactly offset by China’s surplus, while the price of oil is at levels that covers the oil’s exporters imports.

HSBC on the Empire Manufacturing Survey:
(NY and region manufacturing sentiment survey)

link to original: … ction.html