Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Still Bearish

In California [pdf]:
Retail sales were down $962 million (-7.3%), corporate taxes slipped by $795 million (-17.4%), and income taxes were $946 million lower (-4.3%) than last year’s totals on December 31.

U.S. consumers fell further behind in paying off credit cards last month In December, an index that tracks repayment of outstanding card balances recorded its sharpest one-month drop on record, dropping to about 16 percent from more than 18 percent the previous month, Fitch said.

Late payments on home-equity lines of credit rose to a record in the third quarter Delinquencies on home-equity lines of credit, known as HELOCs, rose to 1.15 percent from July through September from 1.08 percent in the previous period, the group said today in its consumer credit delinquency bulletin. Home-equity loan delinquencies rose to 2.63 percent

Oil services layoffs:
Schlumberger, meanwhile, said it plans to lay off about 1,000 workers in North America, or about 5% of its work force in the region. ... Halliburton Corp., Schlumberger's largest rival, also said Thursday that it will cut jobs but provided no details.

Reduced investment in oil and gas production is bullish, long term.

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