Securities industry revenue dropped 36% in 2008

It will come as no surprise to learn that revenues for securities, commodity contracts and other financial investment activities decreased 36.1 percent in 2008, from $464 billion in 2007 to $297 billion in 2008, according to new data from the U.S. Census Bureau.  (I know the chart is hard to read, but it looks cool and you’ll find the specifics below.) Continue reading

Robert Shiller concedes he was wrong. Once.

Noting that the Case-Shiller 10-City index for the U.S. rose 3.6 percent between April and July, Yale economist Robert Shiller acknowledged in the New York Times on Sunday that the suddenness of the shift from a decline of 4.8 percent between January and April surprised him.  Said he:

In my column in June, I wrote that home prices might well continue to decline for years. As of that time, the S.& P./Case-Shiller price index had fallen every month for almost three years. Add to that the prospect of continuing high unemployment and a weak economy for years to come, and the prospects for home prices did not seem rosy.

But the new data are startling. Continue reading