• 3 days Ireland Balks At Biden’s Global Tax Plan
  • 6 days Robinhood To Trade On Nasdaq Targeting $32B Valuation
  • 10 days Facial Recognition Is Watching You
  • 11 days Biden’s $3.5T ‘Human Infrastructure’ Workaround
  • 11 days The Fed’s $3 Trillion Headache
  • 14 days Why Bitcoin Could Struggle To Recover After Epic Crash
  • 14 days Wells Fargo Back In The Spotlight Over Personal Loan Cancellations
  • 15 days Delta Variant Real Threat To Economic Recovery
  • 18 days JEDI Drama Continues With Microsoft Contract Cut
  • 20 days DiDi Shares Take a Beating From Chinese Regulators
  • 21 days Thousands Of Companies Hit In Latest Ransomware Attack
  • 21 days Jobs Report Has Big Numbers, But Still Big Problems
  • 22 days Robinhood’s ‘Mission’ Questioned in $70M Fine
  • 25 days Didi Just Went Public, And Uber Is Loving It
  • 26 days Islamic Finance On Track To Hit $3.7 Trillion
  • 27 days The Lumber Bubble Is Bursting
  • 31 days A New Entry In The Two Trillion Dollar Club
  • 31 days 3 Upcoming IPOs To Watch As IPO Market Rebounds
  • 33 days Welcome To The Used Car Bonanza
  • 34 days The Year Of The Retail Investor Keeps Getting Bigger
John Rubino

John Rubino

John Rubino edits DollarCollapse.com and has authored or co-authored five books, including The Money Bubble: What To Do Before It Pops, Clean Money: Picking Winners…

Contact Author

  1. Home
  2. Markets
  3. Other

More Ominous Charts For 2016

If 2015 was the year in which no investment strategy worked, 2016 is looking like the year in which all economic policies fail. Already, at what should be the blow-off peak of a long expansion, US corporate profits are instead rolling over:

Earnings

In recent quarterly reports, most companies blame their dimming fortunes on the strong dollar's impact on foreign sales, an assertion that's borne out by recent declines in industrial production. We're selling less real stuff abroad, so factories are making less:

US Industrial Production

The huge bright spot in an otherwise bleak manufacturing landscape is auto sales, which have snapped back nicely:

Domestic Motor Vehicle Sales

But they've apparently been floating on a tide of extremely easy credit. In 2010, fewer than a tenth of car loans were for more than six years. Today the average loan is nearly that long. During the same expansion, outstanding auto credit rose from $600 billion to over a trillion. Car buyers are now challenging college students for the title of most clueless borrower. So expect all those breathless accounts of the bulletproof US auto market to be replaced with laments about empty showrooms in the near future.

US Household Debt

Add it all up and you get an economy that's carrying some serious weight on its shoulders and rapidly losing momentum. Here's the Atlanta Fed's latest GDP Now reading, which puts Q4 growth at less than 1.5%:

GDPNow

None of which is especially noteworthy. Expansions usually start to look like this after six or seven years, especially those fueled by subprime lending.

What is noteworthy that these trends are playing out in an environment when all the other major economies are also rolling over and the US Fed has just begun a tightening cycle. That makes 2016 a uniquely scary year.

 

Back to homepage

Leave a comment

Leave a comment