After 1 Year, Obama Vs. Reagan

As we approach the end of the year, we are also approaching the end of President Obamas first year in office. You might be wondering how he is doing, based on actual numbers (rather than political spin).

Obama clearly inherited a difficult situation economically. Only two others in the modern era came even remotely close. One, of course, was FDR, but unfortunately the data from then is rather sparse, and mostly available on just an annual basis, or at best quarterly (good economic data was one of the by-products of the New Deal).

The other who inherited a difficult economic situation was President Reagan. Granted, the type of difficulty was very different under Reagan, and presidents — like quarterbacks — get too much of both the praise for a good economy and the blame for a bad economy.

Still, I think comparing the numbers for the two during their first “year in office could be instructive. The data I used for the comparison are all available monthly (at least, and if more frequently, I used the monthly data). The source of all data is the St. Louis Fed (except for the S&P 500).

The two presidents offered very different prescriptions for the economy. Reagan was all about cutting taxes and less government involvement in the economy. While most of the really big moves of government into the economy in response to the recent economic crisis actually took place under President George W. Bush, Candidate Obama saw them as needed. The Bush Administration was the one that bought the stakes in American International Group (AIG – Snapshot Report), Fannie Mae (FNM – Snapshot Report), Freddie Mac (FRE – Analyst Report) and the banks, while Obamas support for a prepackaged bankruptcy resulted in large government stakes in the Auto industry.

There were no comparable big investments by the government into the private sector late in the Carter Administration, and certainly Reagan did not initiate any. Reagan did not have to deal with a financial meltdown when he took office, but on the other hand, Obama did not have to deal with runaway inflation. Both are serious diseases, but think of it this way: both cancer and heart disease can kill you, but you would not want to give chemotherapy drugs to a heart attack patient. Thus, perhaps it is appropriate that the prescriptions be different.

If one only looks at the unemployment rate (U-3), both did a poor job in their first year, and Obama was significantly worse. The unemployment rate in January 2009 was 7.6% and by November it had climbed to 10.0%. In January 1981, when Reagan took office, the unemployment rate was almost identical at 7.5%, and by November of 1981 it had climbed to only 8.3%.

Private employment actually rose during the first 11 months of 1981 by 0.55%, from 74.671 million to 75.084 million. Under Obamas tenure so far, private payrolls have dropped by 2.95% to 108.495 million from 111.793 million.

So on the employment front, Reagan is the clear winner so far. However, over the course of 1982 and 1983 the employment situation deteriorated significantly. We do not know what unemployment will do in 2010 and 2011, and thus can only judge based on what we have seen so far and in the comparable period under Reagan.

Advantage: Reagan

Reagan also wins when it comes to real disposable personal income, which expanded by 2.3% in the first 11 months Reagan was in office, while it has only increased by 1.0% so far under Obama.

Advantage: Reagan

The dollar was also much stronger during the first 11 months of Reagan, although I am not sure if that is a positive or a negative. During the first 11 months of Reagan, the dollar relative to an index of major currencies gained 9.88%, while under Obama, the dollar has lost 9.70% relative to the same index.

Given that we are running chronic trade deficits now, but really were not back then, I would argue that today a weak dollar is good for the economy today since it will help out on the net export side of things. Inflation is not a big problem today, but was the number one problem with the economy when Reagan took office. The downside of a weak dollar is that it contributes to inflation, so back then having the dollar strengthening was a good thing.

No Advantage to Either

On the inflation front, however, things are far better under Obama. On a headline basis, prices have gone up by 2.39% so far under Obama, while they rose 7.57% during the first 11 months that Reagan was in office. On a core basis (ex-food and energy) the difference is even more stark, rising 8.31% under Reagan and up just 1.51% under Obama so far. Later in the Reagan Administration, inflation fell much more, but even when he left office in 1989 inflation was far higher than it is today.

Advantage: Obama

Industrial production fell slightly more during the first 11 months of Reagan (1.07%) than it has under the first 11 months of Obama (0.68%). Capacity Utilization started out at a much lower level when Obama took the oath than the Reagan did, at 71.1% (an all-time record low at the time) vs. 80.7% when Reagan took office. However, by November of 1981, the total capacity utilization rate had fallen to 77.9%. Under Obama, capacity utilization has actually risen to 71.3%, although it remains at a historically low level.

Advantage: Obama

Interest rates can tell a lot about the state of the economy. For example, the spread between the rate that gilt-edged companies have to pay on their bonds and what normal companies have to pay on their bonds tells a lot about how much bond investors fear companies going belly up. The former is measured by the Moodys (MCO – Analyst Report) Aaa rate and the later by the Baa rate (not to be confused with “junk bond” rates; Baa is still investment grade).

In January of 1981, the best credits in America had to pay 12.81% on their bonds, while normal companies had to pay 15.03%, for a spread of 2.22% (or as a ratio, normal companies had to pay 17.3% more than the gilt-edged ones). By November of 1981, both the best and the ordinary had to pay more — the Aaa rate had surged to 14.22% while the Baa rate had risen to 16.39%, so the spread had fallen ever-so-slightly to 2.17. The ratio had come down a bit more, and the ordinary firms were paying 15.3% more than the best firms.

When Obama took office, the Baa rate was 8.14% while the Aaa rate was 5.05%, for a spread of 3.09. In other words, ordinary firms had to pay 61.2% more for money than the best firms did. Investors were very afraid that companies would go bankrupt, and so demanded a higher rate from normal companies than from firms that seemed to have very little risk of writing a new chapter (the eleventh) in their corporate histories.

Since then, the rate the highest-rated firms have to pay has actually increased slightly to 5.19% while the rate that normal firms have to pay has plunged to 6.32%, bringing the spread down to 1.13% and the ratio down to the point where normal companies are paying 21.8% more for their money than the Aaa firms.

(Given the huge difference in the overall level of interest rates between the two eras, it is important to look at both the spreads and the ratios. Clearly a spread of 2% has a very different meaning and significance if it is between 1% and 3% than if it is between 13% and 15%).

Advantage: Obama

Another important signal that comes from interest rates is the yield curve, or the difference between long-term and short-term interest rates. The curve is measured using Treasury notes or bills, since you only want to be looking at the differences due to maturity, not due to quality (the opposite of the Aaa-Baa spread, which is only looking at quality differences, not maturity differences).

While there are many different measures of the curve, the one that is used the most is the difference between the 2-year note and the 10-year note. Generally speaking, the steeper the yield curve, the better. An inverted yield curve is very bad news, and is probably the best single indicator that the economy is about to go into a recession.

When Reagan entered office, the 10-2 curve was inverted, with the yield on a 2-year note at 13.26% and the yield on the 10-year at 12.57%, for a spread of -0.69. On a ratio basis, the 10-year was providing only 0.95 of the 2-year. By the time November of 1981 rolled around, the curve had returned to normal but was still pretty flat. The yield on the 2-year had fallen to 12.88%, while the yield on the 10-year had increased to 13.39, resulting in a positive curve of 0.51. On a ratio basis, the 10-year was 1.08 of the 2-year.

When Obama entered office, the 2-year was at a very low 0.81% while the 10-year was 2.52%, for a positive spread of 1.71%. On a ratio basis, the 10-year was yielding over three times as much as the 2-year (3.11x to be exact). By the end of November, the curve had expanded even further, with the 2-year virtually unchanged at 0.80%, while the yield on the 10-year had risen to 3.40%, for a spread of 2.60% and a ratio of 4.25x. Again, given the vastly different overall levels of rates, it is important to consider both the spreads and the ratios when making the comparisons.

Advantage: Obama

Mortgage rates were both far higher and moving in the wrong direction early in the Reagan presidency. When he took office they were at 14.90%, and by November they had risen to 17.83%. When Obama took office, the rate on a 30-year fixed mortgage was 5.06% and has since fallen to 4.88%.

Not surprisingly, then, the housing market was far worse under Reagan than it has been under Obama (at least if measured by direction, not levels). In January of 1981, housing starts were running at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.547 million, and by November of that year they had plunged to 837,000, a decline of 45.9%. Since January of 2009, housing starts have risen from an annualized rate of 488,000 to a rate of 574,000 in November, an increase of 17.6%.

Advantage: Obama

Similarly, single family new home sales plunged by 25.2% early in the Reagan years to a rate of 382,000. Since Obama came into office, new single family home sales have risen by 22.2% to an annualized rate of 402,000. Existing home sales are not particularly important to the economy (just like used car sales are not very important).

Auto sales also fared worse under the early part of the Reagan Administration than they have so far under Obama (at least as measured point-to-point). When Reagan took office, auto and light truck sales were running at an annualized rate of 11.03 million and had fallen to 9.21 million, a decline of 16.5%. Under Obama, auto and light truck sales have risen from an annualized rate of 9.59 million in January to a rate of 10.89 million in November, an increase of 13.6%.

Advantage: Obama

Finally, while people sometimes make too much of the day-to-day fluctuations in the stock market, it is a good reflection of the overall health of the economy when you look at longer time periods — and almost a year is long enough to qualify there. On that metric, there is simply no contest. Between inauguration day and Christmas Eve in 1981, the S&P 500 lost 7.65%. Since Obama took office, the S&P 500 has gained 39.9%.

Advantage: Obama

Weighing these different economic indicators is inherently subjective, and thus I am not sure that one can come to a clear-cut case that one has done a better job than the other — at least so far. This is also far from a complete list of economic indicators and I focused on only those that were available at least monthly, and many of the most important economic numbers come out quarterly.

Arguably, the economic mess that Obama inherited was worse than the one that Reagan inherited, although both were pretty nasty — yet very different. The U.S. economy is more of an oil tanker than a speedboat, and does not turn around on a dime, so it really is too early to tell how Obama is doing.

However, the indicators that are most forward-looking and leading for the economy (stock market, yield curve and quality spreads, housing starts) are the ones that favor Obama over Reagan. Overall, 11 months in, one must conclude that Obama is doing at least as good a job on the economy as Reagan did in his first 11 months.

Automotive Telematics And Inormatics With Semiconductor Trends

China is currently the world’s large-scale Car Consumer market, China’s auto market demonstration inside 2009 through 13 million, upward 48%, and ranks No. 1 international market; the matching time, China has within attachment bought into very physically within thoroughfare erected structure and reconstruction. It is approximated that via 2013, China’s automotive telematics and enjoyable style networks market shall perpetuate 40 billion dollar industry. Longer a pitiful operation of transportation vehicles, there is evolving expect towards opportunity within their motor cars within the direction of obtain information, enjoy the enjoyable operation construing and towards loan the competence of the innovation driver.

Automotive Infotainment Systems (Informatics) Market: slim down veer of multimedia entertainment, mobile navigation growth

However, there Informatics Electronic Optimistic arrive complete the market proliferation rate is not enough, this is because even however our territory has marketed 1,300 cars, but because of stimulus-driven chiefly low-end products, and consequently the look for for researching not enjoyable process system. iSuppli major analyst at discovery institute of China Ren Zhen examination Road, following the 2.8% down veer inside 2008, the Chinese automotive infotainment electronics market is approximated that inside 2009 it leaned over via 6.1%. The market is commanded via pastime entry form. Since there is no one sign that the worldwide motor engine engine car consumption rebounded powerfully inside the next three years, Chinese-made activity commodities shipments shall persevere the down hill trend.

Correspondingly is, iSuppli viewpoints that automotive infotainment electronics Semiconductor Market 2009 propagation rate was -1.7%, and multimedia activity system-related skip within the semiconductor market inside the direction of 4.6%, wherever the mobiles navigation scheme associated inside the direction of the semiconductor market engendered via 7.7%.

As minute cornerstone inside 2009, slow rises within 2010 shall be inside the direction of reestablish and lawyer the market. iSuppli anticipates 2010 automotive infotainment electronics market shall engender 4.9%, linked inside the direction of the semiconductor market shall evolve via 7.0%.

China is now the world’s large-scale auto exert market, China’s auto market output inside 2009 afresh 13 million, higher 48%, and ranks No. 1 worldwide market; the same time, China has inside contribution bought into strongly inside path assembling and transformation. It is approximated that via 2013, China’s automotive telematics and activity webs market will come 40 billion dollar industry. Longer a mere mechanisms of transportation vehicles, there is unravelling expect towards install inside their engine vehicles inside the direction of recover information, enjoy the enjoyable operation know-how and to enhance the efficiency of the invention driver.

Automotive Infotainment Systems (Informatics) Market: slender plummet of multimedia entertainment, portable navigation growth

However, the newest market rate of Informatics e-optimistic enough, this is because even though our countryside has swapped plural than 1,300 cars, but because of stimulus-driven primarily low-end products, and thus the appeal for data not pastime system. iSuppli major analyst at examine institute of China Ren Zhen analysis Road, successively the 2.8% fall in 2008, the Chinese automotive infotainment electronics market is evaluated that in 2009 it shoved via 6.1%. The market is commanded by enjoyable process theory form. Since there is no sign that the global motor car consumption rebounded toughly in the next three years, Chinese-made amusement wares shipments will preserve the heading down trend.

Correspondingly is, iSuppli accepts as factual that automotive infotainment electronics semiconductor market in 2009, annual propagation rate was -1.7%, and multimedia enjoyable operation system-related down veer in the semiconductor market to 4.6%, wherever the portable navigation method linked to the semiconductor market expansion of 7.7 %.

As let down basis in 2009, slow expansion in 2010 will be to return and urge the market. iSuppli peers drive to 2010 automotive infotainment electronics market will engender 4.9 percent, the associated semiconductor market will care for by 7.0%.

Car enjoyable procedure Although the automotive entertainment electronics and semiconductor market in 2009, stalled, but could not concede the general tendency of technological development, improve in latest products is very active.

Freescale (Freescale) China Automotive Engineering Manager Kangxiao Dun said, onto the one hand, demand from the market perspective, users of multimedia entertainment instructions slowly increased; the other hand, automotive electronics hardware and software engineering development, and also thrust vehicle entertainment procedures to achieve a flavor of inquires for employment possible. Comparison with the past, vehicle entertainment scheme is not limited to the methodical event of raise vehicle audio, and cinema applications hoist functionality and operation enhancements in this frontier has become a sultry spot. In addition, a range of allotments and diagrams storage and network transmission technical apparatus led to the audio and TV storage and Communicate Provide the rudimentary platform and more for the motor vehicle entertainment system the affluent collection of entries development. Typical applications for example audio system, CD/DVD/VCD/MP3 multimedia player, TV Receiver, GSM / GPRS phone, camera functionality, Bluetooth mobile Headphone , Voice discerning systems, the Internet, bureau and other vehicle wages from vehicle entertainment schemes are more and more. Meanwhile, car entertainment systems are frequently integrated car headed by car information, a virtual implement panel, auxiliary backup systems, car navigation systems, spawning the vehicle data system becomes more complex.

Customer Loyalty Program For Retail Marketing

For you to be stable in your business you must always find ways and means or certain strategies to be on the lead over your competitors. One technique in retail marketing that would be the best way to keep your clients and shoppers coming back to you is the use of a customer loyalty program or others refer to it as a reward program.

The customers profit in this reward program and the many benefits that they will get in exchange for what they have shopped would encourage them to keep shopping in your place.

In reality the customer loyalty program is a program of attracting buyers to keep coming back to your store for the reason that they get certain benefits. This program may differ from one another depending on how the owner would plan and set it up. The most commonly used ones are gift certificates, special discounts on certain items and points equivalent to the items they buy.

In this reward program, the member is given a loyalty card for him to hold every time he goes shopping in your store. The customer must show this card at the counter during the time when he is purchasing the items in order to get the benefits he is entitled to. In other cases if your store is an online store the customers must know and must be given the number they should use by the time they check out instead of using a card.

You can purchase a 365 loyalty card at participating merchants in the network or you may by them online at 365loyalty.com .

Another style of the reward program is the points system. Here, all the members using their loyalty card receive a certain amount of points that depend on the amount of their purchase. Soon, they can collect the points and have it exchanged for certain money off their next purchase. Rewards are given in various items like discounts on some items, a shopping voucher, a chance to buy something on a reduced price or a likable gift item
free.

Retailers dont have to think only of one reward program you can decide on many member incentive type rewards. Store owners must decide which type of reward programs will have the best system that works for their business.

There are a few things to consider when planning for your reward program. Things like nature of the items you are selling and above all the characteristic of your clients. It would always be wise to think and plan for the best strategy to utilize in your program so your business wont be at a loss and you would save it for your top buyers. .

For a more attractive program you can use a combination of various strategies at one time. You may give out a universal member cards to most or majority of your customers and reserve some VIP cards for your top buyers. This strategy is best useful when you business covers a large variety of products also with various price ranges. It is very important for you to remember that the 365loyalty program is intended to give rewards to your buyers and loyal clients as well as improve their happiness and fulfillment in shopping at your store.

Many times customers find it disappointing to see a lot of terms and conditions when using their member card. It would be best to use simple terms and conditions which are comprehensible, and clear. No hidden fees should be included in the terms, they will upset your clients. Once you lose your clients you will find it very hard to bring them
back again.

If your goal in using the reward program is to satisfy your customer with your products and services for a long term, then your loyalty reward program is sure to succeed. But if your intention is solely to make profit instantly then the program is not appropriate for your retail marketing strategy.

Since the 1980s creating a Loyalty Reward Program has proven to be a very good strategy in business to meet your goals, go beyond your customers expectations and encourage long term loyalty and growth..

To find out more about a community loyalty card in your area contact 365loyalty.com or call them at (609)568-6012

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So, speaking about the most popular designer brands it’s worth to mention such a hot brand as Oakley. This brand has recently introduced “Wearable Electronics” line which offers mostly Wholesale Merchandise Tooth Technology for the usage of hands free mobile phone and an MP3 player in order to download and listen to your favourite music. This Tooth Technology is a system that’s built into Cheap Sun Glasses the frame of the sunglasses. Using these technologies built into the frame of sunglasses lowers the need for earphones, cords, headsets, and wires. Besides, you’ll feel free to listen to your favourite music any time you wish and without any problem or discomfort.

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Industry Gem Finally Approves Steps To Up-list To A Higher U.s. Stock Exchange Otcflki

Ive been following this company since 1997 and it has been interesting to watch it grow from an idea to an internationally respected corporation, a leader in the industry.

Management notwithstanding the publicly traded status of the company has always managed to keep itself below the radar, that is, until late last year faced with an unfriendly bid for control, it could no longer do so.

It amazes me how stock traders of todays chat rooms and message boards can display such incredible disregard for the basics, foremost among these, the short term acumen and patience necessary to a great winner. In the case of FLKI, you could smell the sizzle for the last year. Everything was obvious, but like a baby wanting it now, they let the golden egg dissipate out of their avaricious pockets to fill those of the more patient of their acolytes. Its the beauty of this game of course that theyll or at least some of them will have a chance to get back in, late but in time for a worthwhile return.

I concluded long ago, that for these folks, money doesnt seem to be the primary motive, most lose money all of the time; its the adrenaline rush of a quick in and out that does it for them. I have written a number of articles on the subject.

The current tale will undoubtedly remind you of another tale, that of the hare and the turtle, how much plotting however does a stock investor need when the news is good, the earnings and prospects growing, the fundamentals scream yes and the charts rate the stock buy buy buy. Let the stock stand still a while, let it go back and forth, give it the time to rise to its proper level. Well for these amazing traders, you guessed it, if its not now, and I mean now, they dump it, feeding volatility, lavishing commission income upon the brokers, and perpetuating a syndrome that ensures extravagant losses.
Stocks like people need time to rest and consolidate.

Well there were and remain plenty of astute investors with their pockets wide open to purchase the stock at half the price these impatient traders laid out for the privilege of ownership. Theyre there buying of course because of whats to come and it takes no investment genius to figure it out.

FLKIs decision to commence the process for up-listing to a more senior market is fueled by the well reported rapid progress in its portfolio of high end product development, by the rapid expansion of its global distribution network, and by time and again witnessed, the growing world-wide interest in its Eco Pledge Standard for a Green, earth friendly production of biodegradable products. And yes let me say it now ahead of the naysayers, possibly as a management defensive technique against an unwanted bid for control even at the hefty price of $ 1;50 for newly issued shares (diluted value about 55 cents by my best count). But so what the end result is a massive improvement in the value of the stock whichever way it goes, and as for me let me stay with tested and enthused management any day.

As any good due diligence will prove, Falken Industries Ltd (OTC:FLKI) stands for solid gains in global implantations of its product conceptions and for growing global interest in the Company’s exceptional biodegradable product mixes, including products, notably wipes for disinfection and degreasing, designed for rescue teams, the military, and general utilities. Moreover it is apparent to all who take the time, and management shares the opinion, that FLKI substantially meets the requirements to up-list to a more senior U.S. stock exchange.

In fact, FLKIs Advisory Board approved steps that would initiate a reverse stock split as early as this year, if needed, to meet minimum stock price requirements of the senior U.S. stock exchanges and is establishing audit, compensation and nominating committees in advance of a planned up-listing. Nothing light about that news.

It makes sense, moving to a senior U.S. exchange should be a high priority for the company given the progress of its business interest, the demand upon its product conceptions, the major expansion of its distribution network, and its industry leadership and growing global interest in its Eco Pledge unique standard for ensuring Green products. Listing on a more senior U.S. exchange will assuredly in my view help increase visibility for the company and help attract a broader class of institutional investors. That stands for value building for shareholders.

I remember reporting on the vociferous shareholder demands presented at last years shareholder meeting. The company took the hint and direction of its 4,200+ shareholders. For the first time in a decade it initiated an effort to devote resources to investor awareness. That also will translate to value building for shareholders.

Clean Plus products, FLKIs most popular branded line of 160+ product conceptions, include disinfection and cleansing wipes tailored to crisis and disaster rescue teams, and notably to military applications, and products to purify brackish water. Custom wipes allow military and rescue personnel to ensure health and cleanliness while essentially eliminating the need for water in parts of the world devastated by intense drought conditions Iraq, Afghanistan any one?

So lets call it a spade, FLKI is not a sub-penny stocks that may trade on the hype of the morning call only to crash (there is a reason for the statistic that day traders loses on more than 88% of their trades). Lets give a hoorah for the short and intermediate term investors that have the stamina, the intelligence and the good sense to make an investment and stick to it for at least as long as the news and performance is positive ; as for me, front and center my example herein, Im buying up to 13 cents and riding happy for the rest.

Falken Industries Ltd OTC : FLKI is a diversified industrial conglomerate that operates in Chemicals, Wet Wipe and Biodegradable Technology. Falken Industries Ltd is the concept behind more than 160 products distributed through a network of global platforms and the recipient of trade awards for innovations, biodegradability and environmental and health quality standards.