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Dancing the data dance

| Posted by: Paul Donovan | Tags: Paul Donovan

  • China's GDP data for 2017 will doubtless exceed China's official target for GDP data for 2017, because targets are there to be beaten. However, the allegation that growth might be stronger than reported because the previous year's growth data was artificially boosted is troubling. Dodgy data messes with economists' models.
  • Regardless, China's economy is growing faster than is sustainable in the long term, in either economic or environmental terms. Already, pollution is lowering life expectancy in parts of China.
  • US housing data is due. There is evidence of labor capacity constraints in housing. US President Trump is reportedly considering announcing an infrastructure plan in the state of the union address at the end of the month. Who would build the infrastructure is not clear. If the president is hoping that hordes of Norwegian construction workers will pour into the US, the president is likely to be disappointed.
  • Bitcoin has been floating with USD 10,000 of spending power. In the rational world, round numbers do not matter -  fundamental value does. Bubbles are not rational. Round numbers have an irrational psychological value, and that is what bubbles build on - or burst on. Zero is also a round number.