I didn't want to write again so soon about the uselessness of leading economists who must all be sitting in the same ivory tower double-checking the same wrong data and reaching the same completely wrong conclusions.
I seriously wonder if any of these people have walked a street in a major city and seen the homeless and the closed offices and the empty retail stores. I was reminded that the one city in America where the Depression isn't really visible is Washington DC because of increased government spending and it's really true. It's also where a lot of 'leading economists' live.
Last week, our cousins in the UK had an unintentionally humorous moment when their geniuses missed a one month tax revenue estimate by $15 billion dollars. I mean, think about that, it's hard to do, you seriously have to have some blinders on to miss a projection by $500,000,000 every single day for a whole month.
Today, I was going to let our economists play with their pencil sharpeners in peace but the housing stats came out.
Let's keep this simple, we're talking NEW HOME SALES. People who are interested in buying a new home right now. My gut and my pet rock is saying, this has to be a low number.
For context, November was down 9.5%, and December was down 3.5%. So think Pet Rock, think, I would bet that January would still be down a bit.
But that's why I am not a leading economist, and neither is my pet rock.
Because Economists predicted that sales would be UP 5%. Really? Up?
The Commerce Department reported Wednesday that new home sales dropped 11.2% last month from December, to a seasonally adjusted annual sales pace of 309,000 units, lowest level on records going back nearly a half century.
The big drop was a surprise to economists who had expected sales would rise about 5% over December's pace.
Yep, another whiff.
And like my friend Paul Abrams commented a few days ago, not only did they miss, they don't even get the way the ship is traveling correctly, they are saying up, facts are saying down.
Annualized sales are now at 309,000 new home sales for the whole country FOR THE ENTIRE YEAR.
But have no fear:
The National Association of Home Builders is forecasting that sales will rise to more than 500,000 this year, an improvement from 2009....
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