Jun 3, 2017
Adieu to Paris. Trump totally right. Would any other GOP prez have done it? Trump most conservative since Reagan. Media endorsements. Econ growth. Climate change models & causes still unknown. Trump concerned about climate, but bad deal. Nuclear power? G-7: no talk of stable money & supply-side policies. Softer jobs v. falling unemployment.Bad but not terrible.Wage income proxy still around 2% real, 4% nominal. Participation rates falling. Is ADP a better? Inflation slowing. Commodities flat. Fed tightenings? Stocks rallied on Paris pullout. Biz investment a bit stronger. Interest rates? Eurozone inflation back below 1%.j Melissa Francis new book: "Lessons from the Prairie." Markets & Trump. Elon Musk, Lloyd Blankfein. ExxonMobil. GE all wanted Paris. Mick Mulvaney: time for CBO has come and gone. POTUS: 51 for all Senate votes; get rid of filibuster. Attach tax cuts to healthcare. BAT tax dead. Aetna leaving CT. 1853. David Tepper leaves NJ. 12% of revenues.
May 27, 2017
Dan Clifton & Mike Solon: Trump's new budget: back to Clinton welfare reform; make it pay to work. There are no cuts. Just slower growth. What about tax cuts? Ryan gives up BAT tax? Senate? Detailed plan from WH? Parental leave? Joe Rago & Hadley Heath Manning: Repeal & Replace: when, what, how? Messaging? Risk pools? Premiums? Keep your doctor? GOP promise to fund poor, ill, pre-conditions? Medicaid? Senate: not 50 votes yet. Brian Kelly & Peter Costa: Stocks: domestic profits falling, so are profit margins. Commodities? Bitcoin? Fed rate hikes? Fed shrinks balance sheet: retire reserves. Flat curve? April capex not good. Gen Jack Keane: Trump changes policies in Mid-East. From Iran to Saudis & Israel. Sunni-Arab-Israel NATO? $100b to Saudis. Iran-Hezbolla-Hamas real enemy. What about campaign to destroy ISIS? NATO not taking terrorism seriously. Moore-Pethokoukis-McIntyre: Money Politics: Lawyers stop Trump tweets? Staff shake-up? War Room? Corey Lewandowsky, Dave Bossie, David Urban. How about econ side? Kushner-Russia?
May 20, 2017
Treasury Sec Steven Mnuchin leads way for pro-growth tax cuts w/ 3% growth paying for them. Reconciliation very flexible? Don't have to use CBO or JTC estimates. Is Admin coming together w/ House/Senate? Timetable? Year end? Banking reform? "Let this go" is not obstruction of justice. Not crime.Mueller's jurisdiction? Narrower than past. Why didn't Comey report memo to DoJ? How long? Advice to Trump? Confusion: what are they investigating? Sr. WH official person of interest. WH leaks! Nut job. Relieved Trump pressure. Stocks: buy the dip because tax cuts are coming? Profits? Econ outlook? Fed? Amazon near 1,000? 250% S&P is bull mkt not just a rally? Dollar-gold-oil? Dr. Rock Positano: "Dinner w/ DiMaggio: Memories of American Hero" Money & Politics: Can US get back to 3% growth? Most econs say no. But capital formation is key. Outlook for health & tax reform? Pence for Prez?
May 13, 2017
All things Trump-Comey. Damage to him & GOP?Damage to growth agenda? Stone advise him? WH shake-up? Esp communications? New FBI? Trump not under investigation? Healthcare bigger problem for tax cuts than Comey? If no tax cuts & growth spurt, GOP crushed in mid-terms? Ryan: we can walk & chew gum at same time. Cornyn: healthcare before yearend. But why did Ryan bungle reconciliation/regs? Payroll tax cut for workers? No wage deduction for employers? Ted Cruz major player in health compromise. Working w/ McConnell. Same working group for taxes? 3% growth baseline? Biz tax cuts lead to capita deepening, productivity & wages. Why have wages flatlined? US- China trade deal very good. Trumps turns around. Negotiation not war. Day the earth was hacked! Stocks: No gold sky-high or stock plunge on Comey. Retail store collapse? CPI & retail sales slowing. Commodities soft (no inflation).
May 6, 2017
Sen Ted Cruz: Senate outlook for healthcare & tax reform. What should be done, what will be done? Can he support? House bill moving in free market direction? Turn back on New Deal like JFK & Ronald Reagan (populist)? States rights, 10th Amendment, federalism: medicaid caps, illness prior conditions risk pools, essential benefits mandate. $900b tax repeal. Reconciliation? Filibusters? Regs? Senate parliamentarian? Opens way for tax reform/biz tax cuts. Growth pay-for? State-local tax deduction? BAT? House Freedom Caucus tax plan? How long for tax cuts? GOP as party of working men & women? Dems elites? Taxes, health, success, biz, border security, refugees, abortion, trade, MAGA, world leadership? Growth/prosperity greatest populist issue? Former Sen. Tom Coburn & Betsy McCaughey on health debate, House bill, Senate priorities. Jobs, econ outlook, Fed rate hikes? Stocks side-ways. Profits strong. But no biz investment. Saintly wife doubled sales 1st 5 months: Trump confidence? Deflation pressures? Apple $1b USA investment? Jimmy P: Hal Varian & capital deepening.
Apr 29, 2017
Trump's dramatic tax reform announcement caps off solid 1st hundred days. Gorsuch, reg rollback, border & national security. Consumer, biz, small biz, & stocks all up. Trade war fears down: China, NAFTA, 232, dumping wood & steel. Negotiation, not war? 2nd hundred days: taxes, healthcare, infrastructure, border wall, refugee visas, sanctuary cities. Can GOP govern? It looks more optimistic to me. Trump optimism: Think big, dream bigger. Foreign policy surprises: Syria, Russia, N Korea, ISIS. Endgames? Winning? Is senior staff operation coming together? Foreign? Domestic? Econ? Trade? Can GOP govern? What are polls telling us? Democrats 1st hundred days? Tax cut growth pays-for deficits! Mnuchin. Campaign plan won. WAPO & NYT. Wage-earners. Obama people carping on deficits? New Deal failed, it's our turn JFK-Reagan-Trump. Trump must sell it. Growth, jobs, wages. Rallies. Reconciliation whatever you want it to be. Stocks rally on taxes & trade. Earnings up. GDP 2%. Fed?
Apr 22, 2017
Can biz tax cuts pay for themselves? Mnuchin & Cohn say yes to dynamic growth models. So does Art Laffer Comm4Prosperity. Committee for a Responsible Budget says no. Maria Bartiromo talks about Trump interview and her financial economic outlook. Is their a Health Care deal ? Working w/ Senate? Tax Reform this week? CR extension? Gov't shutdown? Dynamic scoring? 3%=$4 tr revenue increase. Cong Dave Bratt. Is bipartisan corporate tax reform possible? Former Obama CEA chair Jason Furman. Flattening yield curve, falling bond rates, lower inflation breakevens, decline retails sales, no biz investment? Profits over exuberant? GO rose in Q4. Trump policies? Why BAT tax is wrong. Corp tax reform. Tax rate incentives matter. Is Trump wrong on trade? Can we make 3% growth? Alan Reynolds birthday week. Start w/ biz tax, then omnibus individual tax. Child tax credits? Infrastructure? What will Trump tax overhaul look like? Throw out campaign plan? 1962 Trade law section 232 national security protectionism? Tampering w/ H-1B visas? Buy America? Reagan or Bush economy?
Apr 15, 2017
Easter: We have all found ourselves at the foot of the Cross. Stay a while on Good Friday, before rushing to the great Vigil of Resurrection on Sunday. Stay a while to ponder the awful Crucifixion. He died for our sins. What were/are those sins? What must we do to atone? Fr. Richard John Neuhaus: Death on a Friday Afternoon. Passover supper is Last Supper. Trump reversals & Trump strengths. Ex-Im (Scott Garrett), Yellen, rates, dollar, tax & health reform, reciprocity, Syria, Russia, no China currency manipulation, easier trade w/ China re N. Korea. Trump promises kept: tax, repeal & replace (tho total confusion; NEC-Cohn haven't done their job), pipeline, EPA, border security, refugees. Drain swamp-- overturn establishment elites. Problems gone unfixed for 20 years. Give him a chance. Tax plan scrapped? W/ cheap dollar? Reversal of JFK-Reagan. Drain CBO swamp. Growth is mother of all pay-fors. GOP hardball on reconciliation. Stocks slip. Retail sales fall 2nd straight month. Syria impact? Oil recession over? Profits? Mixed signals. The Benedict Option by Rod Dreher. Bannon down? More centrist Trump?