The Hungry Writer

An unemployed writer keeping sane during The Depression II.

Posts Tagged ‘consumer confidence’

Don’t you dare cough near me.

Posted by The eDater on January 30, 2009

Just, Step, Back.

Just, Step, Back.

It’s been a morning of paperwork for you favorite unemployed author. Two days ago was the Blizzard Drive, yesterday the Great Unpacking, so today only made sense as a time to Tackle the Mail.

The good news – soon, I’ll receive my severance, various new checks will be deposited and accessible, and my tight living quarters will breath just a little more freely.

The bad news – it’s unreal what they want for COBRA! I mean, when I was living abroad, and I got this crazy expensive insurance that covers you in every part of the world for every possible situation or malady – that was just over half what COBRA was asking.

Needless to say, an able-bodied, able-minded lad like myself with time to kill wasn’t just going to take the easy way, not when he could probably find some insurance for, at least, that half-price premium.

I did one better, friends. I’m at one-third the COBRA cost. For better coverage. Really makes you wonder, what do we have COBRA for, anyway? Other than for a few pre-existers who wouldn’t be able to get coverage otherwise (and the fact that they couldn’t get coverage any other way is, well, indefensible).

Of course, while my apps are being processed (one for the real deal, one for short-term coverage while waiting on the real deal), take your sick, your tired and your weary and lock ’em in the next room.

Meanwhile, for those of you who couldn’t bare to peak the news this morning… Japan joins the recession march, our GDP falls at a 3.8% annual rate (and people are ecstatic it wasn’t worse!), and Davos starts to come ’round to my way of thinking.

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Bits and bobs.

Posted by The eDater on January 27, 2009

This is what bits and bobs look like.

This is what bits and bobs look like.

Yesterday, the housing market gave some unexpectedly good news – existing home sales rose 6.5%. Of course, much of that was predicated by an 18.2% drop in the price of homes, to 2004 levels. Now, 2004 is about when the bubble started going crazy, but the housing market was in a bit of a bubble from 2001 onwards. When bubbles pop, they usually need to fall below the trendline, before evening back out right around that trendline.

The trendline for housing has always been appreciation more or less in line with inflation. House prices in 2004 were well above the trendline (even the trendline carried forward five years to 2009).

In other words, house prices still have plenty of room to fall.

Meanwhile, consumer confidence is at an all-time low. Everyone’s feeling this thing. Not really surprising, then, that everyone’s looking for something else to do. After all, the old job didn’t work out, did it?

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