Thursday, June 03, 2010

Oil, jobs and the positive power of feeling grumpy and jumpy

Well, the headlines are decidedly positive that BP has finally cut the riser pipe but it's definitely not a clean cut (they've been working most of today trying to trim off jagged pieces of pipe) and that will make getting a proper seal very challenging. The volume of oil coming out of the pipe right now is truly staggering. The volume of dispersant being applied is also pretty startling (you can see the dispersant in Standi: ROV 1 - it's the white plume being pumped into the oil stream).

You can see all 12 underwater rovers in action at this link. Let's hope they get a tight seal, but I think the media sounds a bit more optimistic than BP (who has oversold and underdelivered at each stage of this clean-up so far).

Tomorrow our attention will turn to the jobs report. Goldman upped their estimate to 600k!! jobs but the entire increase was due to census jobs. There is an enormous range of estimates from 100k to 750k. I've never seen such a wide spread, but the key will be to focus on non-census, non-birth/death adjustment jobs. If that number is north of 250k it could provide the fuel for a sharp rally. If we fail to reach that number and the markets slip a bit today things could really get ugly tomorrow. Or, as has been the trend, the actual number will be surprisingly close to the estimates and nothing will happen in the market. In other words, it might rain, unless it doesn't.

Finally, this story from the BBC almost brought a smile to my face - Feeling grumpy is good for you.

"In contrast to those annoying happy types, miserable people are better at decision-making and less gullible, his experiments showed.

While cheerfulness fosters creativity, gloominess breeds attentiveness and careful thinking, Professor Joe Forgas told Australian Science Magazine."


PS - This video of a person going attempting a to turn their Chevy into a new version of the General Lee is going to be an Internet sensation. You saw it here first....

*** If you are one of the many email subscribers to the blog you won't see the video above. Just go to the original posting at to see the video it's worth 12 seconds of your time.

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