Skyrocketing Lumber Prices Have Increased The Average Price Of A New Home By $35,872 In 1 Year

Do any of you remember when you could buy an entire house for $35,000?  There was a time in America when middle class Americans could buy a house and have it paid off in just a few years.  But now existing home prices have soared into the stratosphere, and lumber prices are making it ridiculously expensive to build new homes.  As you will see below, skyrocketing lumber prices have driven up the average price of a new home in the United States by almost $36,000 over the past 12 months.  That is absolutely nuts, but everyone agrees that even more inflation is on the way.

Of course it isn’t just lumber prices that are going haywire.  In California, the price of gasoline has almost reached five dollars a gallon in some areas, and the price for premium gasoline has almost reached six dollars

Gas prices continued to increase in or around Southern California for the ninth day in a row. And that appeared to be a similar trend nationwide where other states were seeing an increase as well.

The average price of a gallon of regular gas in the Beverly Grove area on Saturday was $4.99 and $5.99 for premium.

We are being told that one of the reasons why the price of gasoline is spiking is due to a lack of tank truck drivers

According to the National Tank Truck Carriers trade group, up to 25% of trucks are parked around the country because there are not enough qualified tank truck drivers. That number is up 15% from the beginning of last summer.

The demand for drivers took a hit when pandemic-induced lockdowns triggered steep declines in the gasoline market, and drivers opted for other jobs. However, the return to pre-pandemic numbers has been further undermined by unemployment benefits and stimulus checks keeping people away from jumping back into the workforce.

You can thank our politicians in Washington for this mess, and hopefully the driver shortage will just be temporary.

But if you think that the price of gasoline is bad now, just wait until the big war in the Middle East officially starts.

On Monday, the price of lumber continued to escalate dramatically.  According to the Wall Street Journal, lumber futures are now “more than four times the typical price this time of year”

Lumber futures delivery later this month ended Monday at $1,575.60 per thousand board feet, a record and more than four times the typical price this time of year. Futures rose by the daily maximum allowed by the Chicago Mercantile Exchange during nine of April’s 21 trading sessions.

But don’t worry, because the Federal Reserve insists that they have everything under control.

Hopefully they are on top of things, because we are rapidly getting into crisis territory.  As I mentioned above, rising lumber prices have driven the average price of a new home up by nearly $36,000 in the last 12 months…

Skyrocketing lumber prices that have tripled over the past 12 months have driven the price of an average new single-family home to rise by $35,872, according to new analysis by the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), with the price spike threatening to hobble the momentum of the U.S. housing market, one of the bright stars of the recovery from the pandemic recession.

Thanks to the completely and utterly insane policies of our “leaders”, high inflation is here to stay, and it is going to be exceedingly painful.

At this point, even Warren Buffett is acknowledging that inflation is starting to become a major problem

BECKY QUICK: I will ask this question from Chris Freed from Philadelphia. And whoever wants to take this on stage, “From raw material purchases by Berkshire subsidiaries, are you seeing signs of inflation beginning to increase?”

WARREN BUFFETT: Let me answer that, then Greg can get more into that. We’re seeing very substantial inflation – it’s very interesting. I mean, we’re raising prices. People are raising prices to us. And it’s being accepted. Take home-building. I mean, you know, the cost of– we’ve got nine home builders in addition to our manufactured housing operation, which is the largest in the country.

So we really do a lot of housing. The costs are just up, up, up. Steel costs, you know, just every day, they’re going up.

Flooding the system with trillions of new dollars was a really, really bad idea, but those that control the levers of power did it anyway.

Now we have way too many dollars chasing too few goods and services, and that is driving up prices and causing widespread shortages.  The following comes from an article about those shortages that was just posted by the Wall Street Journal

Consumers are splurging on cars and furniture—and facing extended waits for delivery. Restaurants and gyms are reopening—and struggling to find workers. Factories and home builders are trying to ramp up—but are short on semiconductors or raw materials.

Our “leaders” are promising that the shortages are just temporary.

And they are also promising that the price spikes are just temporary too.

If everything that they are saying is true, everything will go back to “normal” eventually.

Do you believe them?

In Venezuela today, just about everyone is a millionaire.

But just about everyone is also living in poverty because the currency is essentially worthless.

For years, pundits have been warning about “the death of the dollar”, but now our “leaders” seem determined to murder our currency as rapidly as they can.

I wish that I could say that there is a quick and easy fix to this mess, but the truth is that there is no going back now.

The Federal Reserve has got to keep pumping more money into the financial system or the stock market will crash.

And the federal government is going to continue borrowing and spending trillions of dollars that we do not currently have in a desperate attempt to keep the population happy.

This story is heading for a very tragic ending, and if you can’t see that by now I don’t know what else to say.

***Michael’s new book entitled “Lost Prophecies Of The Future Of America” is now available in paperback and for the Kindle on Amazon.***

About the Author: My name is Michael Snyder and my brand new book entitled “Lost Prophecies Of The Future Of America” is now available on Amazon.com.  In addition to my new book, I have written four others that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned)  By purchasing the books you help to support the work that my wife and I are doing, and by giving it to others you help to multiply the impact that we are having on people all over the globe.  I have published thousands of articles on The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe.  I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but I also ask that they include this “About the Author” section with each article.  The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions.  I encourage you to follow me on social media on FacebookTwitter and Parler, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with as many people as we possibly can.

Tens Of Millions Of “Working Poor” Americans Are Suffering Very Deeply Due To Biden’s Economic Policies

The Biden administration and the corporate media insist that we are witnessing an “economic recovery”, but it sure doesn’t feel like any sort of a “recovery” for America’s working poor.  Tens of millions of working Americans are trying to survive from month to month on stagnant or declining wages at a time when Biden’s economic policies have caused the cost of living to soar.  Our leaders in Washington always seem to think that spending more money is the solution to almost every crisis, and in recent months we have seen the money supply grow at an unprecedented rate.  Those that have been showered with government money are grateful, but all of this new money is also going to make life much tougher for those on the very bottom of the economic food chain.

Just because someone “has a job” does not mean that individual is doing okay in this economy. Greyhound bus driver Marvia Robinson has never had to file for unemployment benefits during the COVID pandemic, but her wages declined substantially, and she got way behind on her rent

Last year, as the COVID-19 pandemic brought the nation’s travel economy to a standstill, Robinson’s hours were. cut, her pay dwindled – to as little as $65 for one two-week period – and she fell behind on her rent. By January, she owed $4,920.38. So she emailed Invitation Homes to ask if it would accept funds from a county program that gives landlords $4,000 in back rent.

In an email response reviewed by Reuters, Invitation Homes told Robinson the company was not participating in the program “due to the landlord restrictions,” without explaining what that meant. The company then sent Robinson an email with links to information about other government and nonprofit relief programs, as well as payday lenders, food banks, the Coalition for the Homeless and ways to make money by selling hair, plasma and donor eggs.

Various eviction moratoriums are protecting multitudes of people that are way behind on their rent, but they didn’t help in Marvia’s case, and she was tossed out on the street on March 9th

In February, an Orange County judge approved Robinson’s eviction. On March 9, two sheriff’s deputies showed up at Robinson’s taupe two-story rental south of the city, bolted the doors and changed the locks.

So what is Marvia supposed to do now?

She works extremely hard, but it still wasn’t enough to keep her from being tossed out into the cold.

Overall, Moody’s Analytics is projecting that 7 million Americans will owe a total of $40 billion in back rent by the end of May.

Like Marvia, many of those people actually have jobs.

When I asked Google how many Americans are classified as “working poor”, it gave me a number from 2018…

About 38.1 million people, or 11.8 percent of the nation’s population, lived below the official poverty level in 2018, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

Needless to say, that number is almost certainly far higher by now thanks to the economic depression that we have experienced over the past year.

And guess which state now has the highest level of “functional poverty”?…

As the California Legislature churned toward adjournment last week, its members received another reminder that the state’s most vexing — and shameful — socioeconomic malady persists.

The Census Bureau reported that California still has the highest level of functional poverty of any state, averaging 18.2% of its 40 million residents impoverished during the three preceding years.

The state that has the most tech billionaires also has the most people living in poverty right now.

Isn’t that ironic?

In their desperation to jumpstart the economy, our leaders in Washington have been creating, borrow and spending money like this is no tomorrow.

Just look at what this has done to our money supply.  The following chart which comes directly from the Federal Reserve shows the stunning growth of M2 since the beginning of the pandemic…

Of course this was going to drive the cost of living higher, and food prices are one thing that I am watching very, very carefully.

Just a few days ago, Bloomberg published an article entitled “The Grocery Price Shock Is Coming to a Store Near You”

Corn, wheat, soybeans, vegetable oils: A small handful of commodities form the backbone of much of the world’s diet and they’re dramatically more expensive, flashing alarm signals for global shopping budgets.

This week, the Bloomberg Agriculture Spot Index — which tracks key farm products — surged the most in almost nine years, driven by a rally in crop futures. With global food prices already at the highest since mid-2014, this latest jump is being closely watched because staple crops are a ubiquitous influence on grocery shelves — from bread and pizza dough to meat and even soda.

Food prices have been aggressively rising for 10 months in a row, and there are several factors that are leading analysts to project that they will continue to rise in the months ahead…

The most recent crop spikes follow months of price gains fueled by booming import demand from China. Corn prices have doubled in the past year, while soybeans are up about 80% and wheat 30%. With China’s purchases continuing and a spate of adverse weather conditions threatening crops in Brazil and the U.S., there are few signs of respite.

As food prices move higher and higher, this will put additional stress on tens of millions of “working poor” Americans that are barely scraping by from month to month.

The good news is that nobody in the U.S. is starving at this point, but the same can’t be said about the rest of the world.

Global hunger is on the rise, and one expert is warning that things are starting to get really bad out there

“The relentless rise in prices acts as a misery multiplier, driving millions deeper into hunger and desperation,” Chris Nikoi, the World Food Programme’s regional director for West Africa, said earlier this month. It’s “pushing a basic meal beyond the reach of millions of poor families who were already struggling to get by.”

As I detail in my most recent book, we are moving into a time when there will be horrific global famines.

We all know this is coming, and so we should be getting prepared ahead of time.

Of course there are tens of millions of Americans that can’t afford to get prepared because they don’t have any extra money at all each month.

With each passing day, more Americans are falling out of the middle class and into poverty, and everything that our leaders in Washington do seems to make things even worse.

***Michael’s new book entitled “Lost Prophecies Of The Future Of America” is now available in paperback and for the Kindle on Amazon.***

About the Author: My name is Michael Snyder and my brand new book entitled “Lost Prophecies Of The Future Of America” is now available on Amazon.com.  In addition to my new book, I have written four others that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned)  By purchasing the books you help to support the work that my wife and I are doing, and by giving it to others you help to multiply the impact that we are having on people all over the globe.  I have published thousands of articles on The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe.  I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but I also ask that they include this “About the Author” section with each article.  The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions.  I encourage you to follow me on social media on FacebookTwitter and Parler, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with as many people as we possibly can.

This Economic Depression Has Left Very Deep Economic Scars All Over America

The last 12 months have been pure hell for the U.S. economy. According to Oxxford Information Technology, approximately 4 million U.S. businesses permanently closed their doors in 2020.  We have never seen that many businesses wiped out in such a short period of time in the entire history of our country.  Meanwhile, we have seen a tsunami of unemployment that has been absolutely unprecedented.  More than 70 million new claims for unemployment benefits have been filed during the pandemic, and the number of new claims each week continues to hover at a level that is about three times as high as we witnessed before the pandemic.  Currently, the Economic Policy Institute is telling us that “25 million American workers are either unemployed, underemployed or have pulled out of the workforce entirely”.  This economic depression has already been extremely painful, and many experts believe that a whole lot more economic pain is still on the horizon.

If you are doing well in this economic environment, you should be very thankful for your blessings, because millions of other Americans are suffering greatly.  One of those Americans that is deeply suffering is named Denitra Pearson

One hundred and forty days have passed since Denitra Pearson lost her job caring for the elderly in their homes. Forty-two days have passed since she, her husband, and children lost all their belongings after a fire engulfed their house on a snowy winter night.

They’re now living in a hotel.

Denitra has six kids to care for, and the only “job” that she has been able to find is low-wage work vaccinating people at a local clinic

Pearson, a New Haven mother of six, has an associate’s degree and two job certificates but only one of the dozens of applications she’s filled out has led anywhere, landing her another low-wage job at a local clinic vaccinating people against COVID-19. Her husband, who was a chef at a nearby university before the pandemic disrupted the college campus, is still looking for work.

This economic depression has pushed millions of formerly middle class Americans into poverty, and for many of them life will never be the same again.

At this point, the Bureau of Labor Statistics says that a whopping 2.4 million Americans have been unemployed for 52 weeks or longer…

Nearly 2.4 million Americans were unemployed 52 weeks or more in March, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

That’s almost double the number in February and is about 1.6 million more people than in March 2020.

Could you imagine being out of work for that long?

Almost one-fourth of all of our unemployed workers have been out of a job for at least 12 months, and one economist that was interviewed by CNBC is calling that fact “pretty breathtaking”

“I think that number is pretty breathtaking, that nearly a quarter of unemployed workers have been unemployed for over a year,” said Heidi Shierholz, director of policy at the Economic Policy Institute and former chief economist at the Department of Labor from 2014 to 2017.

“It really shows that even as the economy is recovering, you have a lot of the same people who have been unemployed throughout this whole damn thing,” she added.

I feel particularly bad for college students that are graduating in this sort of environment.

Many of them went in with such high hopes and dreams, but now the job opportunities that they were promised are not materializing.

College senior Bao Ha will be graduating this year from Macalaster College in Minnesota, but he hasn’t even been able to land an interview even after applying for more than a hundred jobs

The job market is starting to roar back, but for anxious college seniors like Bao Ha, it’s a different reality altogether.

“I’ve probably applied to like 130 or 40 jobs or something,” Ha says. “I have not gotten even an email back, or an interview.”

College graduate Erica Schoenberg is in the same boat.

She hasn’t been able to find a full-time job after a year of searching, and so she is still living with her parents

Erica Schoenberg would know.

She was a member of the class of 2020, which had the misfortune of graduating in the brunt of the pandemic.

A year after Schoenberg watched her virtual graduation ceremony from Trinity University from her living room couch, she’s back at her parents’ home because she can’t find a full-time job.

During this pandemic, the percentage of Americans that are living with their parents reached the highest level since the Great Depression of the 1930s.

That is crazy.

But there is some good news.

The good news is that we are in a temporary pocket of time in which economic conditions have stabilized.  Things are certainly a lot worse than they were before the pandemic, but at least we are not seeing the same sort of rapid deterioration that we did throughout much of 2020.

Of course this temporary pocket of time will not last, and that is the bad news.

If anyone out there believes that Joe Biden is going to save the U.S. economy, they are just being delusional.

The stimulus money that Americans are being showered with right now will help in the short-term, but all of the borrowing and spending that our government is doing will just make our long-term problems even worse.

We should be thankful for the relative stability that we are currently enjoying, but this is not a time to party.

Instead, we should be using this time to prepare for the troubled times that are ahead, because the truth is that our long economic nightmare is just beginning.

***Michael’s new book entitled “Lost Prophecies Of The Future Of America” is now available in paperback and for the Kindle on Amazon.***

About the Author: My name is Michael Snyder and my brand new book entitled “Lost Prophecies Of The Future Of America” is now available on Amazon.com.  In addition to my new book, I have written four others that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned)  By purchasing the books you help to support the work that my wife and I are doing, and by giving it to others you help to multiply the impact that we are having on people all over the globe.  I have published thousands of articles on The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe.  I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but I also ask that they include this “About the Author” section with each article.  The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions.  I encourage you to follow me on social media on FacebookTwitter and Parler, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with as many people as we possibly can.

America’s Upside Down Economy Just Took Another Bizarre Turn

Is this a good economy or a bad economy?  Well, that all depends on who you are talking to.  For most Americans, economic conditions have been absolutely horrible ever since the COVID pandemic first arrived.  More than 100,000 businesses have permanently shut down, approximately 10 million Americans are in danger of being evicted from their homes, and weekly unemployment claims have been above the old record set in the early 1980s every single week for nearly an entire year.  Meanwhile, the absolutely insane polices that the Federal Reserve and our politicians in Washington have been pursuing have made the wealthy far wealthier than ever before.  In early 2020, M1 was sitting at about 4 trillion dollars, and now it is up to 18 trillion dollars.  Much of that money has ended up in the pockets of the ultra-wealthy, and now they are spending it is some pretty odd ways.

For example, NFT art is one of the latest crazes.  You can’t hang NFT art on your wall, but that isn’t stopping people from paying ridiculous amounts of money for it.  In fact, things have gotten so crazy that one film director has decided to sell audio clips of himself farting as NFTs…

A Brooklyn-based film director is simultaneously mocking and attempting to profit off the cryptocurrency craze for non-fungible tokens (NFTs) by selling a year’s worth of fart audio clips recorded in quarantine.

“If people are selling digital art and GIFs, why not sell farts?” Alex Ramírez-Mallis, 36, told The Post of his dank addition to the blockchain-based NFT market.

You would have to be absolutely nuts to purchase such a thing, but apparently someone has already purchased one clip for 85 dollars

Individual fart recordings are also available for 0.05 Ethereum, or about $85 a pop. The gassy group has so far sold one, to an anonymous buyer.

“If the value increases, they could have an extremely valuable fart on their hands,” he said.

Pizza Hut has decided that they want to get in on the NFT craze as well.

In Canada, the company originally listen an NFT of a pizza slice for 18 cents, but it ended up selling for $8,824

Pizza Hut Canada has announced it is releasing “1 Byte Favourites,” aka digital images of pizza, as non-fungible tokens. “Pizza Hut believes no world should exist without pizza, especially their pan pizza. That’s why they wanted to make sure it was enshrined in the digital universe,” they said in a release. Each week the company will release a new image of a pizza slice, each of a different recipe, for purchase on Rarible. The first-ever “slice” was listed for $0.0001 ETH (a cryptocurrency the equivalent of 18 cents), but wound up being sold for $8,824.

This is madness, and it is also a grave insult to all of those that are deeply suffering out there.

Could it be possible that we are rapidly approaching our own “let them eat cake” moment?

As the ultra-wealthy continue to throw their money around in absurd ways, most people are just struggling to get by from month to month.  On Thursday, we learned that another 770,000 Americans filed new claims for unemployment benefits last week…

Figures released Thursday by the Labor Department show that 770,000 Americans filed first-time jobless claims in the week ended March 13, higher than the 700,000 forecast by Refinitiv economists.

Weekly jobless claims have remained stubbornly high for months, hovering around four times the typical pre-crisis level, although it’s well below the peak of almost 7 million that was reached when stay-at-home orders were first issued a year ago in March.

After all this time, the number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits each week is still about four times higher than pre-pandemic levels.

And we just learned that retail sales fell pretty dramatically during the month of February

Americans shopped less in February, leading retail sales to fall 3% on a seasonally adjusted basis, the Census Bureau reported Tuesday.

It was a much steeper drop than the 0.5% decline economists had predicted, according to Refinitiv.

Bad weather across many states were part of the reason sales declined last month.

When things go badly, they love to blame the weather.

Of course the new stimulus checks that Americans are now receiving should help to boost retail sales temporarily.

But at this point there are no plans to cut checks every month, and any short-term assistance will only briefly alleviate the long-term suffering that so many Americans are enduring.

We are currently in the midst of the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression of the 1930s, and a lot more pain is on the horizon.

Even though I write about this stuff on a daily basis, I was surprised to learn that the results of a recent survey show that finances have now become the number one source of stress for the American people…

WalletHub’s new Coronavirus Money Survey also reveals that the nation’s focus is now shifting from the virus to finances. The survey of over 750 Americans in March 2021 finds money is now the biggest stressor around the country.

Three in 10 respondents say money is their greatest concern this year, a 15-percent increase over last year. COVID-19 is still the top stressor for 28 percent of Americans. As coronavirus safety measures fade however, researchers find people are getting back to worrying about how to make ends meet.

If you don’t know how you are going to pay the bills this month, that can be a source of stress that never leaves you day or night.

Those that have gone through this sort of emotional torment know exactly what I am talking about.

So when the ultra-wealthy throw their money away on “farting art” or “Pizza Hut art”, that is like rubbing dirt in the faces of tens of millions of Americans that are desperately trying to figure out some way to survive from month to month.

The ultra-wealthy can continue to flaunt their wealth, but already we are seeing the rise of the “Robinhood mentality” that so many have warned about.

When things get bad enough, the poor will start venturing into rich neighborhoods, and they won’t be there for a social visit.

We still have relative stability for this brief moment, but it won’t last very long at all.

***Michael’s new book entitled “Lost Prophecies Of The Future Of America” is now available in paperback and for the Kindle on Amazon.***

About the Author: My name is Michael Snyder and my brand new book entitled “Lost Prophecies Of The Future Of America” is now available on Amazon.com.  In addition to my new book, I have written four others that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned)  By purchasing the books you help to support the work that my wife and I are doing, and by giving it to others you help to multiply the impact that we are having on people all over the globe.  I have published thousands of articles on The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe.  I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but I also ask that they include this “About the Author” section with each article.  The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions.  I encourage you to follow me on social media on FacebookTwitter and Parler, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with as many people as we possibly can.

Americans Have Never Been More Dissatisfied With How The Country Is Functioning Than They Are Right Now

Are you satisfied with life in America right now?  Before you answer that question, consider more than just politics.  Taking an overall view that encompasses every aspect of our society, are you generally satisfied with how our society is functioning at this moment or not?  Needless to say, we are coming off a very tough year, and 2021 has not started smoothly either.  The COVID pandemic continues to drag on, we are mired in the worst economic downturn in more than 70 years, and there is civil unrest in our streets on an almost nightly basis.  All of these trials and tribulations have taken a great toll on us emotionally, and so perhaps it shouldn’t be a surprise that a new Gallup survey has found that the American people are less satisfied with how our nation is functioning than they ever have been before…

Americans’ satisfaction with seven broad aspects of the way the country functions is collectively at its lowest in two decades of Gallup measurement. This includes satisfaction with the overall quality of life in the U.S., assessments of government, corporate and religious influence, and perceptions of the economic and moral climates.

The average percentage satisfied with these seven dimensions has plunged to 39% at the start of 2021. That compares with 53% a year ago, the highest average in more than a decade amid strong economic confidence and before the coronavirus pandemic took hold in the U.S.

For the survey, Gallup specifically asked Americans about the following seven areas…

-The overall quality of life
-The opportunity for a person in this nation to get ahead by working hard
-The influence of organized religion
-The size and power of the federal government
-Our system of government and how well it works
-The size and influence of major corporations
-The moral and ethical climate

Satisfaction for every one of those areas was way down.

In fact, for six of those categories the decline from last year was in double digits.  Shockingly, the only category that declined by just single digits was “the size and power of the federal government”.

Of course whenever economic conditions are harsh, the overall population is not going to be happy, and we have been through a really tough stretch economically.

According to Gary Halbert of Halbert Wealth Management, last year was the worst year for the U.S. economy in 74 years

Last Thursday the Commerce Department released its first estimate of 4Q Gross Domestic Product showing the economy grew at an annual rate of 4.0% in the final three months of last year. That followed the 3Q record expansion of 33.4% (annual rate) as the economy rebounded strongly following the COVID-19 lockdowns.

2Q GDP plunged by a record-shattering 33.4% (annual rate) following the 1Q slide of 5% in the first three months of the year. For all of 2020 the economy shrank by 3.5%, the worst annual decline in 74 years (WWII).

Sadly, this year has not started very well either.  The number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits each week continues to be at nearly four times the pre-pandemic level

The number of Americans filing for first-time unemployment benefits last week edged down but remained elevated as the coronavirus pandemic continues to trigger a high number of layoffs.

Figures released Thursday by the Labor Department show that 779,000 Americans filed first-time jobless claims in the week ended Jan. 30, lower than the 830,000 forecast by Refinitiv economists.

And the percentage of those without jobs that are considered to be “long-term unemployed” is approaching a record high

Almost 40% of jobless workers in January were long-term unemployed, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Friday.

The share has grown steadily since the spring and is approaching the record set in April 2010, in the aftermath of the Great Recession. At that time, nearly 46% of the unemployed were out of work at least six months.

Our system is supposed to provide a helping hand to those that are out of work, but the help doesn’t always get to those that need it.

Even though I write about our economic problems on a regular basis, even I was shocked by a brand new survey that discovered that “just 30% of unemployed individuals are being reached by the unemployment system”…

Congressional Democrats are trying to fast-track a nearly $2 trillion coronavirus relief proposal that would extend the existing supplemental unemployment benefits, but new research suggests that the jobless aid is not reaching millions of out-of-work Americans.

At most, just 30% of unemployed individuals are being reached by the unemployment system, according to a report published this week by Eliza Forsythe, a labor economist at the University of Illinois. That means roughly three out of every four jobless workers aren’t receiving aid — or about 8 million of the 11 million people counted as unemployed in December.

But for millions of deeply hurting Americans, there is good news in the short-term.  Congress is about to pass another COVID relief bill, and soon more stimulus payments will be going out to the American people.

Of course borrowing and spending another 1.9 trillion dollars that we do not have will make our long-term debt problems even worse and will push us even farther down a highway to hyperinflation.

In the end, most Americans don’t really care that we are literally committing national suicide.  They just know that they are in pain and they want some help as soon as possible.

If economic conditions begin to significantly improve in the weeks ahead, the American people will start to feel better about how the country is doing.

But even if there is some sort of a short-term boost, the long-term outlook is bleaker than ever, and the American people are not going to be able to handle the long-term pain that is coming very well at all.

***Michael’s new book entitled “Lost Prophecies Of The Future Of America” is now available in paperback and for the Kindle on Amazon.***

About the Author: My name is Michael Snyder and my brand new book entitled “Lost Prophecies Of The Future Of America” is now available on Amazon.com.  In addition to my new book, I have written four others that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned)  By purchasing the books you help to support the work that my wife and I are doing, and by giving it to others you help to multiply the impact that we are having on people all over the globe.  I have published thousands of articles on The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe.  I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but I also ask that they include this “About the Author” section with each article.  The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions.  I encourage you to follow me on social media on FacebookTwitter and Parler, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with as many people as we possibly can.

We Are Suffering Through The Most Painful Economic Crisis Since The Great Depression Of The 1930s

I warned that an economic collapse was coming, and an economic collapse is exactly what we got.  2020 was a “personal financial disaster” for 55 percent of all Americans, approximately 12 million U.S. renters are “at least $5,850 behind in rent and utilities payments”, the Aspen Institute is projecting that up to 40 million people could be facing eviction when the rent and mortgage moratoriums finally end, and more than 70 million new claims for unemployment benefits have been filed since the COVID pandemic began.

Nobody can point to a time since the Great Depression of the 1930s when the U.S. economy was in worse shape than it is right now.

Unfortunately, there are no indications that this nightmare is going to end.  Last week, another 900,000 Americans filed new claims for unemployment benefits

Another 900,000 people filed new unemployment claims last week, President Donald Trump’s last in office, a snapshot of the significant labor market challenges facing President Joe Biden.

An additional 423,000 people in 47 states filed new claims for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance, the program created to help gig and self-employed workers.

Prior to 2020, the all-time record for new unemployment claims in a single week was just 695,000, and that old record was set all the way back in 1982.

We shattered that old record early in 2020, but the bigger story is what has happened since we broke it.

At this point, the number of new claims for unemployment benefits has been above 695,000 for 44 weeks in a row.

That is starting to come close to a full year.

If that does not qualify as a “collapse”, then you are probably using a completely different definition of the word than I am using.

This unemployment crisis has hit low wage workers particularly hard.  At this point, even Fed officials are being forced to admit that the unemployment rate for low wage workers “is above 20%”.

Many of those low wage workers used to be employed in the restaurant industry, but the restaurant industry continues to be mired in the worst stretch that it has ever encountered

The number of “seated diners,” a daily measure with which OpenTable tracks walk-ins and diners with reservations, in the week through January 20 in the US was down on average by 57% from the same period last year.

The hospitality industry also typically employs large numbers of low wage workers, and we are being told that last year was the “worst year on record” for that industry…

According to STR, Inc, a hotel industry market data firm, 2020 was absolutely the worst year on record for hotels as industrywide profits fell to zero, as the virus pandemic and resulting government-enforced social distancing measures kept travelers at home.

STR’s latest report said the US hotel occupancy rate was 44% for the year, down from 66% in 2019. This was the lowest occupancy rate on record. In an earlier STR report, we noted weeks ago that the industry had one billion unsold room nights for the first time, surpassing the record of 786 million in 2009.

Countless numbers of small business owners have also been absolutely devastated by this economic downturn.

Each month, thousands of small businesses die a permanent death, and the outlook for the months ahead is not good at all.

The Epoch Times recently interviewed one small business owner in Minnesota who admitted that “the fallout by this time next year will be shocking”…

The ramifications of the forced shutdowns on thousands of small businesses in Minnesota is going to be huge, says Julie Schroeder, who owns two craft stores in the Minneapolis metro area.

“The fallout by this time next year will be shocking,” she told The Epoch Times on Dec. 30, 2020.

Meanwhile, north of the border small businesses are being destroyed at a staggering rate as well

The Canadian Federation of Independent Business is warning that more than 220,000 businesses across the country are at risk of permanently closing due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The CFIB, a lobby group that represents small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) in Canada, released a new report on Thursday that surveyed 4,129 members about business prospects through the pandemic. The survey found that 181,000 businesses – or one in six – are seriously contemplating permanently closing. That’s up from a similar survey conducted in July, which found that 158,000 businesses were at risk of closing.

In the end, if we can keep the amount of small businesses in the U.S. and Canada that go under to less than 20 percent that should be considered a major victory.

Because I have a feeling that the final number is going to be well above that threshold.

And the Biden administration does not seem too sympathetic to the needs of small businesses at this point.  For example, one new law that Biden is likely to sign would absolutely cripple small truckers

Trucking industry experts expect Joe Biden’s presidency to seriously jeopardize many small American trucking companies, and the prospects of truck drivers who work as independent contractors.

Biden is poised to sign a transportation law passed in the Democratic House and stalled in the then-Republican Senate in 2019. The Moving Forward Act had required commercial motor vehicles to maintain more than $2 million in insurance liability, more than doubling the existing $750,000.

Wouldn’t it be nice if our representatives in Washington were forced to take a basic course in economics before they were allowed to serve?

The blind are leading the blind, and the economic nightmare that we are currently experiencing is eventually going to get a whole lot worse.

But hopefully we can at least have a short period of time where things will plateau a bit before the next major trigger event happens.

So many people out there are really hurting right now, and it is not just financial pain that they are dealing with.

The past several months have been excruciatingly painful for tens of millions of Americans, and the truth is that there are countless people out there that are emotionally shattered at this moment.

If you are one of those people, just keep hanging in there.

It will take some time, but you will get through this and you will recover.

And I will continue to be here pumping out articles as I do my very best to try to help everyone make sense of a world that is going completely mad.

***Michael’s new book entitled “Lost Prophecies Of The Future Of America” is now available in paperback and for the Kindle on Amazon.***

About the Author: My name is Michael Snyder and my brand new book entitled “Lost Prophecies Of The Future Of America” is now available on Amazon.com.  In addition to my new book, I have written four others that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned)  By purchasing the books you help to support the work that my wife and I are doing, and by giving it to others you help to multiply the impact that we are having on people all over the globe.  I have published thousands of articles on The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe.  I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but I also ask that they include this “About the Author” section with each article.  The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions.  I encourage you to follow me on social media on FacebookTwitter and Parler, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with as many people as we possibly can.

America’s Slide Into Economic Oblivion Is Already Starting To Accelerate Here In 2021

Isn’t it fun to live in a rotting, decaying society that is coming apart at the seams all around us?  The latest economic numbers are extremely depressing, but now that free speech is being abolished and the elite are consolidating control over every aspect of our society, we are being assured that better days are right around the corner.  We have just got to be willing to accept the “new normal” which includes living in “tiny homes”, snacking on worms, and never expressing any independent thoughts which diverge from official mainstream narratives.  So with that in mind, I will try to share the horrible economic news that we have been getting in the most positive light possible.

This week, we learned that another 965,000 Americans filed new claims for unemployment benefits during the previous week…

The number of people seeking unemployment aid soared last week to 965,000, the most since late August and evidence that the resurgent virus has caused a spike in layoffs.

The latest figures for jobless claims, issued Thursday by the Labor Department, remain at levels never seen until the virus struck. Before the pandemic, weekly applications typically numbered around 225,000. Last spring, after nationwide shutdowns took effect, applications for jobless benefits spiked to nearly 7 million – 10 times the previous record high. After declining over the summer, weekly claims have been stuck above 700,000 since September.

But we are being told that this is only because of the failed policies of the outgoing administration and that things will definitely be much better under the next socialist administration.

2020 was particularly a tough year for low paid workers.  At this point, even officials at the Federal Reserve are admitting that the unemployment rate for low paid workers “is above 20%”

Unemployment for the lowest-paid workers in the U.S. is above 20%, a figure that Federal Reserve Governor Lael Brainard said underscores the importance of policy help for the economy.

The figure indicates how uneven the recovery has seen since efforts to control the Covid-19 pandemic resulted in the biggest quarterly GDP drop since the Great Depression.

How can we put a positive spin on this?

Well, at least more of them have had an opportunity to stay home and not catch COVID.

So I guess you could say that this unemployment crisis has actually had a positive impact for public health.

And more Americans are getting the opportunity to “stay home” with each passing day.  Here is just one example

Dropbox is cutting its global workforce by about 11%, the company said in an 8K filing released Wednesday. The company’s stock was down more than 4.5% in late-morning trading.

The move will affect 315 people, who will be notified by the end of the business day.

Of course as fear of COVID continues to rise, American consumers are doing less shopping at Walmart and other corporate behemoths, and U.S. retail sales just fell for a third month in a row.

But that problem will soon be fixed, because more universal basic income checks are on the way.

All of the previous socialist “stimulus packages” weren’t enough, and so Joe Biden has unveiled “a $1.9 trillion plan to prop up the economy”

Friday offered the first chance for traders to act after President-elect Joe Biden unveiled details of a $1.9 trillion plan to prop up the economy. He called for $1,400 cash payments for most Americans, the extension of temporary benefits for laid-off workers and a push to get COVID-19 vaccines to more Americans. It certainly fit with investors’ expectation for a big and bold plan, but markets had already rallied powerfully in anticipation of it.

Doesn’t that sound great?

And Biden is also calling for “a national minimum wage of $15 an hour”.

Don’t worry, that won’t hurt the restaurant industry at all.

I don’t know why that statement is true, but that is what the “fact checkers” want us to say.

And since Republicans and Democrats both abandoned any pretense of fiscal responsibility long ago, nobody is really pointing out that we are already 27.6 trillion dollars in debt and that we simply can’t afford any more “stimulus packages”.

In fact, thanks to all of the reckless spending that we have already done, the budget deficit for the month of December 2020 was more than 10 times larger than the budget deficit for the month of December 2019…

The U.S. government posted a December budget deficit of $144 billion – a record for the month – due to far higher outlays with coronavirus relief spending and unemployment benefits, while revenues ticked slightly higher, the Treasury Department said on Wednesday.

The Treasury said the December deficit compares with a $13 billion deficit in December 2019, before the COVID-19 pandemic started in the United States.

Overall, the U.S. national debt increased by more than 7 trillion dollars under the outgoing administration, and even CNN is admitting that “it will go much higher under Biden”.

But the adherents of Modern Monetary Theory assure us that “deficits don’t matter” and that we can borrow and spend as much money as we want.

Since that is true, why don’t we make the stimulus payments much larger?

If we are liquidating the Republic anyway, why not send a billion dollars to everyone?

Seriously though, there are millions upon millions of Americans that are deeply hurting as the U.S. economy melts down all around us.

I hope that you enjoyed my attempt at injecting some humor into our situation, but what many Americans are facing right now is not humorous at all.

At this point, most Americans are barely scraping by from month to month, and some are literally facing life or death financial decisions

A mother’s tearful confession that she can’t afford her son’s insulin despite working full-time has left commenters deriding the American healthcare system.

Katie Schieffer’s ten-year-old son was recently diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes and requires insulin every two hours — but the North Carolina mother was left in tears when she couldn’t afford his $1,000 prescription.

Can you imagine what it would be like to be in her shoes?

Our entire system is failing, and things are only going to get worse in the months and years ahead.

For decades, America has been running in the wrong direction and our leaders have been making incredibly foolish decisions.

Now there is deep pain everywhere around us, and the level of suffering is only going to increase as the U.S. slides even faster toward economic oblivion.

***Michael’s new book entitled “Lost Prophecies Of The Future Of America” is now available in paperback and for the Kindle on Amazon.***

About the Author: My name is Michael Snyder and my brand new book entitled “Lost Prophecies Of The Future Of America” is now available on Amazon.com.  In addition to my new book, I have written four others that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned)  By purchasing the books you help to support the work that my wife and I are doing, and by giving it to others you help to multiply the impact that we are having on people all over the globe.  I have published thousands of articles on The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe.  I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but I also ask that they include this “About the Author” section with each article.  The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions.  I encourage you to follow me on social media on FacebookTwitter and Parler, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with as many people as we possibly can.

Waiting For The Other Shoe To Drop…

Do you feel like another major crisis could erupt at any moment?  If so, you are certainly not alone.  Here in 2020, it has just been one thing after another, and we have come to expect the unexpected.  Right now, so many people that I am hearing from are anticipating that more big trouble is just around the corner, but as we wait for “the other shoe to drop”, economic conditions all over the United States continue to rapidly deteriorate.  For example, on Thursday we learned that the number of initial claims for unemployment benefits last week was the highest in four months

The US job market continues to suffer, and Thursday brought more bad news. Another 885,000 people filed for first-time unemployment benefits last week — an increase from the week prior and higher than the 800,000 claims that economists were expecting.

The latest figures, which are adjusted for seasonal factors and reported by the Labor Department, are particularly grim since last week’s numbers were revised up to 862,000. And even before the revision, that week had been the highest level since mid-September.

This isn’t how the numbers were supposed to be trending.

For four of the past five weeks we have seen the number of new unemployment claims go up, and experts are warning that we should expect things to get even worse as we head into winter

‘US weekly jobless claims continue to head in the wrong direction,” Edward Moya, an analyst at the currency trading firm OANDA, wrote in a research note.

‘The labor market outlook is bleak as the winter wave of the virus is going to lead to more shutdowns.”

Could we soon see more than a million Americans filing new claims for unemployment each week like we did earlier in the pandemic?

To put this in perspective, the previous all-time record prior to 2020 was just 695,000, and that old record was set all the way back in 1982.

We absolutely shattered that record once COVID-19 started spreading widely in the United States, and we have been above that old record every single week throughout this entire pandemic.

Just think about that.

We are seeing numbers that we have never seen before in all of U.S. history every single week, and now they are starting to climb higher once again thanks to the new lockdowns.

In addition, the number of Americans that are collecting unemployment aid from two major federal programs is also on the rise again

The number of jobless people who are collecting aid from one of the two federal extended-benefit programs – the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program, which offers coverage to gig workers and others who don´t qualify for traditional benefits – surged to 9.2 million from 8.6 million for the week that ended Nov. 28.

But the number of people receiving aid under the second program – the Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation program, which provides 13 weeks of federal benefits to people who have exhausted their state aid – also rose from 4.5 million to 4.8 million.

By now, the “recovery” was supposed to be in full gear, but instead major companies keep laying off more workers at an astounding pace.

For example, on Thursday we learned that Coca-Cola will be eliminating 12 percent of their entire U.S. workforce…

Coca-Cola is planning to cut 2,200 jobs, including 1,200 in the United States, as it faces declining sales during the pandemic.

In the United States, where there were about 10,400 employees at the end of last year, the cuts represent roughly 12% of the workforce. In Atlanta, where the company is headquartered, about 500 jobs are being eliminated, the company said Thursday.

Coca-Cola wouldn’t be doing this if the U.S. economy was about “to turn a corner”.

All of these big corporations that are letting workers go can see what is about to happen, and they are slimming their payrolls in an attempt to make it through the coming storm.

Meanwhile, Congress is getting close to approving yet another “stimulus package”, and the Federal Reserve is promising to do whatever it takes to support the financial markets.

Trillions upon trillions of dollars are being slammed into the system, and as a result M2 is up more than 60 percent so far this year.

In other words, our money supply has been increasing at an almost vertical rate in 2020.

Back in November I included a chart in an article that I wrote which shows exactly what I am talking about.  If you are not one of my regular readers, you can find that article right here.

For many years, many of us have been warning that hyperinflation would arrive someday.

But now we can stop warning, because the process has actually started.

Other industrialized nations have also been flooding their systems with new money, and this is really starting to drive up food prices all over the globe.  The following comes from Zero Hedge

The reason this has suddenly become a hot topic is because while overall inflation remains subdued (we will spare a discussion here of why the CPI is purposefully distorted to stay as low as possible – readers can catch up herehere and here), food inflation has been on a tear in recent months. In fact, it has gotten so high that earlier this week Goldman published a report looking at “The Recent Spike In Food Inflation”, in which it noted that “in recent months, inflation has risen and surprised to the upside across a number of major EM economies (e.g. Turkey, South Africa, India, Brazil andRussia).” According to Goldman, one of the main drivers of these increases has been higher food inflation, which has coincided with a sharp increase in the price of some key agricultural commodities (e.g. grains, oils and soybeans).”

Sadly, this is just the beginning.  Eventually, the food riots which have already started on the other side of the planet will start happening in the western world too.

And as hungry people become increasingly desperate, I believe that eventually companies will start putting armed guards on food trucks.

We aren’t quite there yet, thankfully, but things are really starting to get crazy out there.

A few days ago I went to the supermarket again, and I really tried to economize and get things that were on sale, but I still spent more than 260 dollars on one cart of food.

Just one cart!

As the cost of living continues to soar into the stratosphere, many American families are going to discover that they are no longer able to afford enough food for the week.

And once millions upon millions of Americans get desperately hungry, that is when we will see absolutely insane economic riots in this country.

All of these things are coming, and we definitely will not have to wait very long at all for “the other shoe to drop”.

***Michael’s new book entitled “Lost Prophecies Of The Future Of America” is now available in paperback and for the Kindle on Amazon.***

About the Author: My name is Michael Snyder and my brand new book entitled “Lost Prophecies Of The Future Of America” is now available on Amazon.com.  In addition to my new book, I have written four others that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned)  By purchasing the books you help to support the work that my wife and I are doing, and by giving it to others you help to multiply the impact that we are having on people all over the globe.  I have published thousands of articles on The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe.  I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but I also ask that they include this “About the Author” section with each article.  The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions.  I encourage you to follow me on social media on FacebookTwitter and Parler, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with as many people as we possibly can.