Lies, Damn Lies, and Statistics

Maybe Chinese exporters are overstating their exports, in general and to the United States. Overstating exports is a classic way of getting capital into a country with capital controls. Or, maybe US tariffs have created a strong incentive for firms importing into the United States to go to some lengths to understate their imports from China. Thus, U.S.Continue reading “Lies, Damn Lies, and Statistics”

Retail Results

October retail is for the sixth month in a row, but just barely. Retail sales up a seasonally adjusted 0.3% MoM v.0.5% expectations, and short the 1.6% gain in September. The losers include grocery-store sales (down 0.4%), bar and restaurant receipts (down 0.1%), and both sporting goods and clothing sales (down 4.2%). MoM winners include non-store retailersContinue reading “Retail Results”

Chinese Corn Prices Accelerate

“China imported 1.1 million tons of corn in September, a jump of 675% from a year earlier, according to official customs data. That was the highest level since 2016. Between January and September, inbound shipments climbed 73% to 6.67 million tons, the highest since at least 2005, data showed.” https://www.bloombergquint.com/china/china-s-2020-corn-imports-are-already-the-highest-in-15-years#:~:text=China%20imported%201.1%20million%20tons,at%20least%202005%2C%20data%20showed.

Transport Volumes Up

Carloads and intermodal units up 2.2% YoY. Four carload commodities showed increases over 2019, led by grain, up 23.9%;  six were down, most notably coal (minus-20.1%) and petroleum and petroleum products (minus-19.1%). For the year to date, total traffic is down 9.8%, with intermodal units down 5.1% and carloads down 14.9%. https://trn.trains.com/news/news-wire/2020/10/21-intermodal-traffic-remains-up-carloads-still-down-aar-statistics-show