July 17, 2007

It's easy to feel richer when things you own have "soared" in price. But are you? Welcome to the world of inflation and dollar depreciation

It's a classic trait during the early stages of inflation that people feel rich as the perceived value of their assets denominated in their currency shoots up (stocks, houses, art, etc)

But then they slowly come to realize that they're indeed not rich, as the buying power of their currency ain't what it used to be. But this takes some time to sink in, especially since they're feeling so rich and flush with cash - who cares if it costs more to go out - my house doubled in value! And ESPECIALLY if the government who reports the inflation data has completely cooked the books.

So here's a standard night in London. $16 for two pints, and $22 for a burger and chips. Then to a movie, which is $20 for the ticket, $10 for the popcorn and $8 for a coke. Times two that's $152 for a cheap night out.

Remember when $152 for beer, burgers and a flick would have seemed insane? $152 used to be a four-course at Ruth's Chris folks. Like just a few years ago.

The dollar is quickly becoming worthless. And 99% of Americans don't think it effects them, and hey great news the Dow was up 1% last week!

Oh, won't they be in for a surprise...

The government is reporting 2.7% inflation. Anyone think that prices are only up 2.7% vs. last year? Sure, the price of homes and rents are crashing, but what about everything else? Want another hint? Just check out the price of corn, or any other commodity.

2.7% ain't even close folks. Ain't even close.

65 comments:

Anonymous said...

Got Gold?

Anonymous said...

Get Gold before your priced out of the market!

Sounds like a realtors sales pitch!

But it's not!

Anonymous said...

FMW where u at?

Anonymous said...

Keith, the world's not London.

Even in NYC, a grilled Rueben at the Carnegie Deli (the best of midtown sandwich joints) is $22, up from ~$15, almost fifteen years ago back in '92. That's in line with the expected inflation rate and the Carnegie blows away most of the London area sandwich shops despite it being a bit on the fatty side. An equivalent "Deli" sandwich in the UK would be ~$40. Plus, one can eat one of those super sized sandwiches for both lunch and dinner, thus saving on eating twice in a single day in New York. And then the Lowes cineplex in Manhattan is also $11 for an adult ticket, half of London's price.

All and all, I think it's London which has inflation written all over it. Many US cities are mainly experiencing high levels of inflation in terms of the assets bubbles (RE, stocks, VIP memberships) but less in basic types of perishables. So, a cheap night out in the Boston-to-DC corridor is still under $70.

Anonymous said...

2.7%? lying fraudsters.

Look at house prices adjusted for inflation over the past 100 years: appreciation is negative.

What we call "appreciation" in our houses is really depreciating dollars. It's been going on since 1913.

Lying scheming bastards.

Anonymous said...

you americans let your females get raped and murdered by illegals
you let them sell crack to your 11 yr old daughter
why ?
what the hell is wrong with you ?
kill these bastards
kill em dead
if they can kill your kids with drugs
can you not kill them ?
no...just blow out a knee cap and they will give 10 years
pathetic
drug dealers should be killed

jorghis said...

The recent spike in corn prices has nothing to do with inflation. It was at over $5 at some point in the 90s. Things like corn, milk, gas, etc. all have price fluctuations. The government may understate inflation by a bit, but it isnt at 15-20% or some ridiculous number like that.

This blog was cooler when it was actually based off of things that made sense. Like economic fundamentals indicating that housing prices were way off. Focusing on a small number of things like corn or gold rising suddenly over the past few years doesnt mean anything. There will always be some commodity that is spiking. Maybe 3 years from now it will be bread, who knows? Then will we be talking about how the dow is losing value relative to a loaf of bread? Right now its gaining pretty strongly relative to the price of bread or one of a million other commodities.

Lets get real here.... said...

Hey Annon,

The world is not London, but if I were to do the exact activities described by Keith here in D.C. it would be alot more than $70.00 And no burger king and six pack from 7/11 do not count. A typical night in Bethesda or Georgetown--Movie Tx for 2==26. Two pints each for two 28 + tip 0f 8 Burgers for two=22 Cokes at movies 13. popcorn 7 and parking at movies can be 5. It goes for a tad over $100 at least for D.C. Baltimore less, but hey its Baltimore

Anonymous said...

Milk is up.

Anonymous said...

I want to take my wife and kids out for dinner to average dinner. Cost about 20 plus a plate then have afew drinks and tip and your at 100 plus for an average night out not including gas.

Kailuan said...

"99% of Americans don't think it effects them."

I'm not sure that's true. I can see what is happening, but what I don't know is what to do about it, so I do nothing. I think many folks are probably in the same boat.

Anonymous said...

Corn prices have increased about 60 per cent and wheat about 50 per cent over the last 12 months. Sugar, milk and cocoa prices also surged, prompting the biggest increase in retail food prices in three decades in some countries.

Statistics Canada says consumers in the country paid 3.8-per-cent more for food in April 2007, compared with the same month last year.

A study released in May from Iowa State University shows increased prices for ethanol has already led to bigger grocery bills for Americans.

In the United States, ethanol is made from corn unlike a country like Brazil, which uses sugar cane. However, U.S. corn also feeds chickens, hogs and cattle, which means a rise in prices for meat, eggs and dairy.

In Mexico last year corn tortillas doubled in price. In Canada, the fallout will not likely lessen as our government committed $2 billion in incentives for ethanol made from wheat and corn.

As of November 2006, 107 ethanol biorefineries have been built in the U.S., with the capacity to produce 5.1 billion gallons of ethanol per year. It is estimated that by May 2008 another 56 refineries will be constructed producing an additional 3.8 billion gallons of new capacity.

Growth in the United States is similar to Canada and is being driven by financial incentives that naturally exist when oil prices are over a certain level.

So if we are bullish of grains and ethanol, the best way to take advantage of rising prices for both is to buy Archer Daniels Midland (ADM:NYSE).

The Decatur, Ill.-based company engages in the procurement, transportation, storing, processing and merchandising of agricultural commodities and products.

Clearly, the market for grains and seed processing will swell as global growth in biorefineries and higher demand for protein in countries, like India and China, continue.

Food price inflation is running at six per cent in China, 11 per cent in India.

So where does this leave investors? Ethanol and higher agricultural commodity prices are good for companies like John Deere, Potash Corp. of Saskatchewan, the Mosaic Company, Saskatchewan Wheat Pool, and Archer Daniels Midland.

I would buy them and sell shares of food processing companies like Kellogg, Nestle, Hershey and PepsiCo that are getting squeezed by rising commodity prices such as sugar, corn, milk and cheese.

The Jones's bought 3,000 shares of Archer Daniels Midland this week at $35.14 US. Our one-year target is $42 US a share.

http://www.canada.com/reginaleaderpost/news/business_agriculture/story.html?id=c55ee189-656b-447c-8a2f-7716dcd083a6

Anonymous said...

It's amazing when you look at stock market in gold instead of dollars I don't think most people understand this

Budvar said...

"Focusing on a small number of things like corn or gold rising suddenly over the past few years doesnt mean anything. There will always be some commodity that is spiking."

Would you care to back up this statement with a list of commodities that aren't "spiking"?

keith said...

Commodity prices going through the roof and $75 oil means everything throughout the food supply chian will now spike

But the government won't tell you

Core inflation is a measure of inflation which excludes certain items that face volatile price movements.

The preferred measure by the Federal Reserve of core inflation in the United States is the core Personal consumption expenditures price index. This is based on chained dollars.

Since February 2000, the Federal Reserve Board’s semiannual monetary policy reports to Congress have described the Board’s outlook for inflation in terms of the PCE. Prior to that, the inflation outlook was presented in terms of the CPI. In explaining its preference for the PCE, the Board stated: The chain-type price index for PCE draws extensively on data from the consumer price index but, while not entirely free of measurement problems, has several advantages relative to the CPI. The PCE chain-type index is constructed from a formula that reflects the changing composition of spending and thereby avoids some of the upward bias associated with the fixed-weight nature of the CPI. In addition, the weights are based on a more comprehensive measure of expenditures. Finally, historical data used in the PCE price index can be revised to account for newly available information and for improvements in measurement techniques, including those that affect source data from the CPI; the result is a more consistent series over time. —Monetary Policy Report to the Congress, Federal Reserve Board of Governors, Feb. 17, 2000

Anonymous said...

Keith,

Here is good article about why the inflation numbers are so far from reality.

http://tinyurl.com/doggf

Anonymous said...

especially since they're feeling so rich and flush with cash.

As mentioned here at HP once before, they feel 'flush and pretty'.

Anonymous said...

"The recent spike in corn prices has nothing to do with inflation. It was at over $5 at some point in the 90s. Things like corn, milk, gas, etc. all have price fluctuations."??

Let me make it easy for you to understand. Look at CRB indice or Goldman Sach Commodity Index - Total Return. It is about to rocketing up again. Man, you are clueless about inflation. And those commodity price don't move up alone by themself.

Anonymous said...

"So here's a standard night in London. $16 for two pints, and $22 for a burger and chips. Then to a movie, which is $20 for the ticket, $10 for the popcorn and $8 for a coke. Times two that's $152 for a cheap night out."

Dude stop comparing London prices with average US prices. I live just inside the perimeter in Atlanta. A movie is $9-10. At my local bar beer is $2.50. Burger and fries at Chili's or some other chain is $8-10. Sure you can spend $25 on a burger if you want, you can also spend $750K on a 500 sqft studio condo if you want or $60K on a Hummer. Doesn't mean you have to.

London has always been obscene price wise. The 1st time I was in London was 1999 and I remember being amazed at how expensive things were. Nothing new there.

Anonymous said...

I'd like to see graphs for the S&P, NASDAQ, and DOW charted against inflation for the last 10 years and see how those indexes are doing.


Any volunteers?

Anonymous said...

Walked into the grocery store on Friday and prices were up at least 10% on everything. Cheese, milk eggs, bread, produce, meat, yada yada yada. I haven't been there in a while since I was eating through the food I had in the freezer so it was quite noticable.

Could be this particular store since it's near an old age high-rise and most of their customers are older folks who have non alternative choices.

On a side note, the govt will continue to under-report inflation in order to keep the government ponzi schemes solvent. They have no other choice than to cook the books.

garry owen said...

Another insideous form of inflation takes the form of products that are sold at the same prices, but weigh less or use cheaper ingredients. Bags and boxes of cereals and chips that used to weigh 16 oounces now have 12 or 14 ounces - at the same price. The margarine spread we buy used to contain 42% water, and now it has 49% water - cha ching!.

Price inflation is easiy running at 10%, or about what I'd expect for a money suppy that is growing at a 12% rate. What I don't understand are HPers who seem to think this will NEVER affect house prices. I see an inflationary blowoff in our future with all these pesky debts and government obligations erased by much higher general prices and wages.

Anonymous said...

Bush 'wreconomics' caught in the act!

Anonymous said...

Adjust today's housing market prices to 2001 dollars and it's like "the boom" never happened!

Anonymous said...

Beer seems to be cheaper that all that matters.

area 51 said...

Hey wait a minute. Just who REALLY has inflation? Sounds like the Brits to me. I can still get a pint for $5.00 (or less), movies for $10, (or less) Quality burger and chips for $10. Methinks the Brits will either flock to the US to go shopping for crap, or hire "low wage" Americans on the cheap. Capitalism at work baby!Oh and BTW, rising energy prices mostly act to curb discretionary spending, resulting in a slowing economy and REDUCED inflationary pressure.

Anonymous said...

Lauravella said: I met a young girl from France at an estate sale last weekend. She just arrived here from North Africa two weeks ago and just loves the currency exchange rate.

With all the transaction costs involved, at least foreigners wont be buying up our excess mcmansions.

Anonymous said...

About as relevant as the DOW as a % of the value of my baseball card collection.

Anonymous said...

A good curry at Veeraswamy and a bear could set you back $200... for one person.

Veronica Lodge said...

RE: The government is reporting 2.7% inflation...

Of course the government is reporting low inflation. This way, increases in government entitlements that are keyed to inflation will be kept artificially low.

Leaving energy costs, housing costs, health care costs and food costs out of the inflation equation helps stabilize the economy.

I feel so much richer now. Maybe I should buy house!

V.L.

Anonymous said...

This is what irks me, the Fed saying that inflation is tame and all- since 2000 prices have doubled. And, it's the same old thing day in and day out with the Fed- when a meeting is a few weeks away they are concerned about inflation (to make the markets think they will raise rates), but when it approaches they feel inflation is tame (so they do not have to take any action). At least that is my thinking...

Anonymous said...

So, a cheap night out in the Boston-to-DC corridor is still under $70.

Um, no.

kilgore said...

This is why I'm not at all sure that run up in housing prices isn't really just a reflection of the fact that the dollar has depreciated so fast versus every tangible asset on earth over the past 6 years.

Anonymous said...

I go to evil Walmart every 3 weeks or so and load up on everything I need; food, pool supplies, garbage bags, paper towels, etc.

Each time I drop $350ish. A year ago it was also $350ish. I eat the same, I have the same pool, I use the same amount of paper towels.

This talk of 10% inflation is comical.

Anonymous said...

So, the question is, who is getting all the extra money that is being paid out? Me thinks, Middle Eastern Tribesmen, Oil Companies and their cohorts.

Anyone for starting up an electric car company?

Anonymous said...

BLACK FRIDAY APPROACHING????

ANYBODY CARE TO PREDICT WHEN THE DAY OF RECKONING WILL OCCUR?

THE AIR IS AS THICK AS THIEVES.....

grifty said...

"I go to evil Walmart every 3 weeks or so and load up on everything I need; food, pool supplies, garbage bags, paper towels, etc. Each time I drop $350ish. A year ago it was also $350ish. I eat the same, I have the same pool, I use the same amount of paper towels."

Hey Anon - you're a damned liar. I know for a fact the price of paper towels has gone up 50% in the past year and even the W-M brands are up 10%-15%. And if the price hasn't increased, the packages have less quantity than before.

So stop blowing smoke and pay attention to the real world. You could start by asking the person who actually does the shopping for you.

truckguy said...

Yeah, there's no inflation. I guess that's why UPS shipping rates are double what they were five years ago, even without the fuel surcharge they added on top of those higher rates.

Unlike many of the dipwads posting here, I went to school in the daytime and I can calculate the inflation rate for UPS services -- it's averaged 14.9% for the past five years.

Yup no inflation, the core rate is 2%...

Anonymous said...

>>>>This blog was cooler when it was actually based off of things that made sense. Like economic fundamentals indicating that housing prices were way off. Focusing on a small number of things like corn or gold rising suddenly over the past few years doesnt mean anything. There will always be some commodity that is spiking. Maybe 3 years from now it will be bread, who knows? Then will we be talking about how the dow is losing value relative to a loaf of bread? Right now its gaining pretty strongly relative to the price of bread or one of a million other commodities.<<<<


perhaps true, but the recurring question needs to be asked......

are we at a juncture in history when all that we have been is changed to something much less desirable? i think we are. we will soon be a third world nation at least economically. most of our manufacturing capacity, has been loaded up and moved to china. the chinese use cheap labor and slaves to make the products they produce and then they sell them to us. these cheaply made products flow through to amerika, because we allowed them most favored nation status back in 1994. when a nation allows its manufacturing sector to be dismantled under the guise of world economic plans, then what it has done is begin the process of destruction of its own economic power. on top of that, we allow illegal mexicans to come here through a open border that no one wants to do anything about except some amerikans. look up agenda 21 and The Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America and read about it, and then tell me as nonchalantly as possible that there is nothing to fear from this government. i feel we as a nation are in dire straits. we are near the end. yet no one seems to care and no one seems to notice. i say again. imho...it is not business as usual. once we go down, we will not come back, unless we rebell and throw off the yoke of this illegal and immoral government and get rid of the immoral people who are running it and influencing it at this time.

Anonymous said...

I operate a small business with 28 employees, and I see the vendor invoices for the supplies we purchase. Here are some statistics for you HP folks to consider:

Metals are up 20% to 300% over last year

Chemicals & solvents are up 20% to 100%

A plastic we use now costs 27% more vs. 2005

Medical insurance is up 27% since last year

Payroll expense is up 7.3%

Our vehicle maintenance contract is up 18%.

We didn't take these increases lightly and I know my purchasing guys negotiate like hell. These are the numbers we're seeing in the real world and as a consequence we raised prices on most products 20% last January. I think the inflation cat is out of the bag and anyone who doesn't see it isn't paying attention. The government inflation numbers are propaganda IMO.

Anonymous said...

Anon said:"Each time I drop $350ish. A year ago it was also $350ish. I eat the same, I have the same pool, I use the same amount of paper towels.

This talk of 10% inflation is comical".

Has your car,house insurance, property taxes gone up for no reason? It's happening everywhere. Maybe you are just not paying attention.

Andy said...

$1 PBRs at John's Alley in Moscow, Idaho, with live music! Who says you can't have a fun night out for cheap?

Anonymous said...

I have a question maybe someone here can help me out with. I remember way back in Econ 102 (thats intro to macro economics) that it was explained that in calculating inflation a "basket of goods" was priced in terms of some base year and those same goods were tracked from year to year to see how the price changed. In this basket of goods was included housing costs, which typically took 30% of one's monthly income. Now, if housing has gone up so incredibly over the last 6 years (to where people face housing costs that surpass their GROSS income), and we now face gas prices that are double (or more) what they were 6 years ago, how can we possibly not be facing major inflation? It is simple math I know, but it doesn't add up. Am I missing something? I just don't get it...

Anonymous said...

i remember when 150 bucks would buy all the food ruth crists sold in a night and i refused to eat there at 150 for a simple meal............as i did not liked beined ripped off, which was something i saved for a special occasion, like surviving in a non sustainable, non self sufficient location, in the midst of total rip off....

Anonymous said...

stopped sending local produce east years ago..due to the shipping costs, about 1997.........

Doktaire said...

Yeah, I have found the government reporting of inflation to be truly bizarre. Surely the whole point of measuring inflation is to figure out exactly what it is doing. But the government basically strips out everything whose price is changing rapidly, so they can turn around and say inflation is "under control", and they don't have to raise interest rates. Has anyone figured out what the REAL rate of inflation is in the USA? I would estimate about 14-17% currently. Surely it is disastrous to adopt a "low-inflation" monetary policy, if the reality is "high-inflation"? One problem that the USA is having trouble dealing with, is that recession is a natural phenomena in any economy, it is very unhealthy to never have it, the USA is standing the edge of some kind of economic precipice, I can just feel it.

stuckinthecity said...

Anonymous said...
I'd like to see graphs for the S&P, NASDAQ, and DOW charted against inflation for the last 10 years and see how those indexes are doing.


Any volunteers?

July 17, 2007 12:41 PM
--

Which inflation? The real numbers or the fake ones?

Anonymous said...

Gold and Silver

Anonymous said...

"Things like corn, milk, gas, etc. all have price fluctuations."

------------------------

Hahahaha! Yeah, and all the "fluctuations" are in the UP direction!!!

Anonymous said...

"...The PCE chain-type index is constructed from a formula that reflects the changing composition of spending and thereby avoids some of the upward bias associated with the fixed-weight nature of the CPI...."

--------------------

Translation: if you can no longer afford steak because it is now too expensive, and switch to dog food (much cheaper!) your cost of living has gone down! Inflation is tamed!

Anonymous said...

garry owen said...
Another insideous form of inflation takes the form of products that are sold at the same prices, but weigh less or use cheaper ingredients. Bags and boxes of cereals and chips that used to weigh 16 oounces now have 12 or 14 ounces - at the same price. The margarine spread we buy used to contain 42% water, and now it has 49% water - cha ching!.

Price inflation is easiy running at 10%, or about what I'd expect for a money suppy that is growing at a 12% rate. What I don't understand are HPers who seem to think this will NEVER affect house prices. I see an inflationary blowoff in our future with all these pesky debts and government obligations erased by much higher general prices and wages.

July 17, 2007 1:10 PM

----------------------

Higher prices, yes. Higher wages, not so much. What's a typical annual raise these days? Raises in the neighborhood of 3-4% a year will not sustain unsustainable home prices.

Offshoring and a flood of illegals (and H1-Bs too) will essentially guarantee that wages won't rise much even as prices do. That's actually been happening at least for the past few years.

Spending on more expensive necessities (like food) will leave less money to pay mortgages, so a combination of rising prices and stagnant wages may actually make the housing collapse worse, even in nominal dollars.

Anonymous said...

area 51 said...
Hey wait a minute. Just who REALLY has inflation? Sounds like the Brits to me. I can still get a pint for $5.00 (or less), movies for $10, (or less) Quality burger and chips for $10. Methinks the Brits will either flock to the US to go shopping for crap, or hire "low wage" Americans on the cheap. Capitalism at work baby!Oh and BTW, rising energy prices mostly act to curb discretionary spending, resulting in a slowing economy and REDUCED inflationary pressure.

July 17, 2007 2:00 PM

------------------------

It's over $2 to the pound sterling, that's part of why all that stuff costs so much in London. Our FRNs are turning into toilet paper. The other part is that London is one of the most expensive cities in the world.

As for rising energy prices "helping" with inflation, yeah, that worked great in the 70s. Dollar dilution is running in the double digits (~12%?), so we'll be lucky if things only get as bad as the stagflation of that decade.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous at 5:12-

The number you are referring to for inflation is the CPI. The large increases in the prices of houses doesn't show up in the CPI because it uses something called "Owner's equivalent rent". It's basically an estimate of what the house would rent for whether it was being rented or not.

There are a lot of loonies on the board who say that somehow the government is trying to rip them off by riggin the CPI. The real story is that several years back the government was paying out way more than they should have to social security recipients, medicare reimbursements, etc. That is the rate of increase from year to year was too much. The population they paid to was different than the population in general, and so the CPI was modified to reflect this. The CPI is more a reflection of what the increase in costs to maintain the standard of living for an elderly SSI receiving population.

I have never seen anywhere where they government claims that this represents the inflation level for all people. It is simply a number that they report and then it gets spun around and miscontrued in the media.

YoungExec2B said...

Quote of the day, by Ben Bernanke:

"If inflation expectations are well-anchored, changes in energy (and food) prices should have relatively little influence on 'core' inflation, that is, inflation excluding the prices of food and energy."

In other words...if we ignore it, it doesn't exist?

http://www.canada.com/calgaryherald/news/calgarybusiness/story.html?id=a5e44c54-f834-4dbb-8273-eff3f36f3efa

Anonymous said...

:So, a cheap night out in the Boston-to-DC corridor is still under $70

You mean a really cheap night out at a diner (like an IHOP, Pizzeria Uno, etc), one daquiri plus movie.

Anonymous said...

Seems like the feds intend to use inflation to solve the social security medicaire problem. Pay them in cheap dollars. Never mind that bread will be $20 a loaf.

Peace Frog said...

Bernanke Babble Analysis
BY ROB KIRBY
"First, judging by Mr. Bernake’s words – it is demonstrably IMPLICIT through his choice of words that he views [or fears, perhaps?] WAGE INFLATION disproportionately more than he does asset inflation.

Now, I’d like everyone to step – back and think about that for a moment.

The Fed Chairman – the man doing ALL the money printing – he’s o.k. with the inevitable push this creates on asset prices but he’s simultaneously confessing his CONCERN about this metastasizing into higher wage demands? It’s like folks disadvantaged by HIS monetary debasement and subsequently trying to “keep up” through higher wages are as unwelcome as a hurricane in the Gulf.”

“It is now my view that what Mr. Bernake did spell out for us all last week is this: BROKEN BORDERS on the U.S.A.’s southern tier – allowing untold millions of illegal migrant workers – is and was DESIGNED to quell the very thing Mr. Bernanke so aptly pointed out concerns him the most – RISING WAGE DEMANDS.”

Anonymous said...

Looks like its black wednesday. The Nikkei is down over 200 pts and sinking fast.

Anonymous said...

Gold will chug higher because of the crap Bear Stearns just took on some of their hedge fund investors.

Anonymous said...

Get real. Although I agree the way the # is calculated ihs hokey, inflation is probably 4-5% at most. If it were much greater the oldsters would be up in arms and they're the only group that votes consistently.

james dean said...

If it were much greater the oldsters would be up in arms and they're the only group that votes consistently.

The oldsters believe the government numbers; they grew up in an era when the government was pretty honest, worked towards the best interests of the average American, and could actually get things done.

Anonymous said...

they are up in ARMS .BUT THEIR ARMS WERE LOOTED YEARS AGO

Anonymous said...

Some douche spewed:

Hey Anon - you're a damned liar. I know for a fact the price of paper towels has gone up 50% in the past year and even the W-M brands are up 10%-15%. And if the price hasn't increased, the packages have less quantity than before.


=======

Proof? Evidence of your known facts?

Come on tough guy, put up or shut the fuck up.

Anonymous said...

Has your car,house insurance, property taxes gone up for no reason? It's happening everywhere. Maybe you are just not paying attention.

July 17, 2007 4:32 PM


======

My car insurance was just renewed about 2 weeks ago. Same cars, same drivers. Went from $442 for 6 months to get this...$448!! My god, how will I ever swing an extra $1 a month?? It's Weimar Germany all over again.

Property taxes go up when r/e goes up. The whole thesis of this blog is that r/e is falling. How in the hell can property taxes be rising at the same time? Think for a second.

My renter insurance cost me $217 for a year. Last time I had renters insurance was 2000, which is the last time I rented. That was $100 a year IIRC, but I owned nothing of value and had a 2 bedroom apartment. Today I have $75K+ worth of insured good in a 4 bedroom home. Given that, a doubling of premium over 7 years seems reasonable.

Prices of used cars and especially boats are dropping off a cliff as people are getting desperate for money. I can - and will soon - buy a 4 year old BMW 5 series for $15K, a $50K car new. 3 years ago, there is no way you could get a 4 year old BMW for 1/3 of the cost of a new one. Today go to autotrader and there is page after page of them.

And of course rents are falling everywhere as well.

All that and yet you people are talking about hyperinflation because milk is up $1.

Whatever.

Anon said...

I agree with this article.

I spent $15,000 the other night going out in NYC. (for drinks, apps, steaks, table, bottle service, shots, lap dances, private room, cab ride home by myself, and vasoline for later)

Back when I lived in College Station, Texas, I used to spend less than $15 per night. Taco Cabana cost about $4, followed by 6-10 beers ($1 each) at Carneys or Blarneystone, followed by watching some free pole dancing at Barracudas. And I'd usually end up getting a BJ from a trashy small town 'ho in the men's room.