Examining the economy through what’s going on with the so-called regular American’s life, we’re still going downhill. However, you wouldn’t be able to tell that by only looking at the stocks. Of course not, they wouldn’t tell us the truth, since lying about the economy is what guarantees their means to continue thriving while Main Street – the real economy – is crumbling down.
All sorts of false narratives are being fed to spook away any suspicion that these exuberant numbers are just posing as a facade and will not hold up long-term. In this channel, we have heavily discussed in previous videos how a V-shape economic recovery actually means… no recovery at all. It marks the immediate stage after a big crash, namely, the reaction to the health crisis’ consequences, which is still unfolding and it does not seem to be leaving us as soon as we thought. Therefore, there are many other stages to follow, and this alleged economic “recuperation” was not magic or result of a colossal amount of effort, as CEOs and investors are trying to imply so that they look like they are helping to boost this “miraculous” upturn. In fact, it was expected. We have announced that this was exactly what it was going to happen, you can check our previous videos and you’ll find it. Many economic experts had alerted this response would be coming, and it wouldn’t necessarily mean that anything would be coming back to normal. At this point, there is no normal anymore.
To give you further proof, we’re going to start by analyzing the ambiguities on the statement of a renowned stock advisor in an attempt to discredit the IHS Markit survey, in which it has been disclosed that the services sector of the economy is not improving but has merely leveled out. That is to say, the survey shows that the business economy is neither falling any further nor is it recovering.
In his article, the investment advisor tries to portray the survey as inaccurate, in a pitiful attack to the truths he doesn’t want to be told – or doesn’t want to believe in. So, if you’re sitting, hold on tight to your chairs and grab some popcorn, because we’re about to break down some fake arguments in here.
His statement starts with an obvious affirmation, to seem that he is trying to make a legit point: “Services are some 80% of the US economy and so we can take their growth or contraction as a pretty good proxy for the economy as a whole”. But then, he goes on with the most twisted graphic examination possible (INSERT GRAPHIC 1): “The seasonally adjusted final IHS Markit US Services PMI Business Activity Index registered 50.0 at the start of the third quarter, up from 47.9 in June and improving on the ‘flash’ estimate of 49.6, to signal a stabilization in service sector business activity.”
Seriously? So now the floor rate that used to demonstrate a clear decline in the economy in previous years now represents an economic stabilization? If anything it displays a stagnation, which is way different, but good wordplay, pal. The thing is – we know better than that. The public is waking up to the fact that these rates say much more about how the richer are still managing to profit as the rest of the economy is collapsing. Right now, an economic growth reveals more money on whose pockets? Not on ours, I’ll tell you that much.
This type of affirmation is sustained under the false pretense that the reopening of some businesses is what is solidifying the economy, when in reality, the economy is barely standing up on its feet, bending over on the Fed’s liquidity injections to survive.
We don’t need to try too hard to see this. If we distance ourselves a little from the big cities’ bubbles – where the large corporations and big businesses rule, and their strength through these times is being showcased to convey the narrative that everything is going to be just fine, meanwhile, bankruptcies are still skyrocketing – we could have a more realistic view of this circumstance.
Two months after the reopening, more than 50% of the shops remain closed. 80% of those were stripped bare. Accordingly, it is optimistically expected that less than 40% of all these businesses could have a chance to come back. On this note, the IHS Markit survey matches perfectly to the recent prognosis regarding the future of service businesses on the ground of the real economy.
On the other hand, this guy, who probably has a stock market he wants to keep backing up, is manipulating the information to his side of affairs, he maintains: “Service providers recorded the first increase in employment since February in July, as pressure on capacity due to the sanitary crisis’ restrictions on business processes causing delays to the handling of order books. Although only marginal, the expansion in payroll numbers signaled a turnaround from the marked contractions seen in April and May.”
However, recent studies had shown that only 25% of the jobs that were lost have come back after these two months. Taking a closer look at this data, the numbers reveal that “as many people are newly losing jobs (or re-losing the same jobs they lost a couple of months ago) as are going off of unemployment.”
In short, those jobs that did not come back after two months of reopening may never come back at all. The number of job losses matches the number of shop closings, so the IHS Markit survey is once again precise. We need to face the fact that businesses are not remaining closed because they’re just waiting for things to get a little better before they reopen. As David Haggith pointed out in a recent article, most of these businesses are clearing out their shelves and taking down their signs. If they could reopen and re-employ people, they would. But the truth is they’re not coming back, and neither are the jobs that were lost. They’re gone for good. It’s not an easy outlook to have, but it is what it is. It’s not helpful to mislead the public with false hope.
Besides, when you ignore the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ hype and take a look at those real statistics that are showing that the numbers of new hires are now just matching with the numbers of new layoffs, you will realize that this “supposed” massive rebound has quit as soon as it began.
When they say that job gains have “stabilized”, they mean that it flatlined, it does not mean that this rate will continuously increase. As a matter of fact, businesses that have reopened are probably dealing with major losses because people are not consuming as they used to anymore. How could they? A distressing number of Americans is still unemployed and most part of the population is only earning enough to make their ends meet.
Moreover, when these investors and market experts say they predict the economy to get back on the rhythm, if they are talking about the same rhythm it has been going on for over twenty years or so, they are talking about a miserable comeback. For the past ten years at least, it was hardly averaged more than 2% growth. That barely keeps up with inflation, especially when we consider population growth. Our GDP is always painted to look better than it really is, this is part of the reason why the average person hasn’t been contemplated with relevant income gains for the past 30 years, whether the country was under a Democratic or a Republican administration.
The GDP growth is slowly collapsing for decades now. There are many factors that add more flame to this situation, but certainly having an economic model based on debt expansion, relying on petro energy – which is increasingly expensive; and plumped up stock prices up for short-term gains – ignoring the paths for longterm profits – has something to do with it.
Anything below the blue line in this chart means recession. We were just about to get to where our average was below the recession before the health crisis began. Thereby, it shows that we were crashing toward a permanent recession for a while now.
As the GDP has been getting smaller and the national debt has been getting larger, adding up to the population boom, the “growth” they babble so much about will be derisive compared to the size of the real economic wound.
Even the MarketWatch has upheld that: “When the U.S. economic shutdown began in March, we were told to expect a “V- shaped” recovery. The consumer and the economy were originally expected to be fully recovered by the end of 2020 at the latest. Now the grim realities are starting to show. McKinsey Global Institute and Oxford Economics recently released a study on the economy after the pandemic. Their models showed that under two scenarios, it could take five years or longer for all U.S. business sectors to recover. Among the small businesses that were studied, recovery is expected to take longer than five years for some and many fear that they will never reopen.”
Either way, the data released by the Fed is based on “new” ways of measuring the GDP in order to try to boost it. Just so you can picture the depth of the economic deterioration, even The Washington Post has published a piece revealing that: “big companies are going bankrupt at a record pace, but that’s only part of the carnage. By some accounts, small businesses are disappearing by the thousands amid the Covid-19 pandemic, and the drag on the economy from these failures could be huge. Closures are going to be well above normal because we’re in a disastrous economic situation,” William Dunkelberg said.
“Yelp Inc., the online reviewer, has data showing more than 80,000 permanently shuttered from March 1 to July 25. About 60,000 were local businesses or firms with fewer than five locations. While the businesses are small individually, the collective impact of their failures could be substantial. Firms with fewer than 500 employees account for about 44% of U.S. economic activity, according to a U.S. Small Business Administration report, and they employ almost half of all American workers. About 58% of small business owners say they’re worried about permanently closing, according to a July U.S. Chamber of Commerce survey.”
In essence, that is exactly what the IHS Markit Survey has indicated. To disregard the real numbers is to fall into economic denial. We are and we have been in a longterm decline due to short-term greed. Whereas Main Street is barely staying afloat, bankers and corporate CEOs are making more money than ever before. In one hand we have the average individual making less money year after year, decade after decade, on the other, you have CEOs profiting at an unprecedented level.
As they can manipulate their stock values as they please, and much of their compensation comes directly from stock sales, meaning that their salary is based on how well their stocks are doing, CEOs are making fortunes by converting massive amounts of company cash and credit into stock buybacks and it is needless to say this also compromised GDP growth and contributes to its long-term decline.
With all that said, we wanted to illustrate to you how all of these actions are serving as a smokescreen to distract the public from the fact that neither the politicians – from both sides – nor the CEOs and investors have any interest in actually fixing the economy. There is no easy way out of this crisis and they won’t bother themselves with hard answers and deep changes in many fronts. The system is set up to keep failing, that’s how they rule us. This nation is doomed and the American dream… is just a dream.