The Baltic Dry Index is a trade indicator that measures shipping prices of major raw materials and is often seen as a global growth indicator. The index is based on a daily survey of agents all over the world.
The Baltic Dry Index is down 48% over the past month (and down 47% over the past year). Is this an indicator of more trouble around global growth?
The European Commission slashed their GDP growth forecast for the European Union (excluding the United Kingdom) and the Eurozone for 2019 and 2020 citing slowing growth in China and weakening global trade.
The growth forecast for 2019 for the European Union (excluding the United Kingdom) was cut to 1.5% for 2019 (was previously forecast 2%) and for the Eurozone was cut to 1.3% (was previously forecast 1.9%).
Germany, Italy and the Netherlands all saw big downgrades for their growth outlook.
There are various ways to look at Household Debt (total debt outstanding including mortgages, loans, credit cards and other debt) in the United States, we look at two today.
The first is debt servicing costs to disposable income which effectively is how much it costs to service household debt as a fraction of disposable (after tax) income. The second is household debt outstanding to disposable income which effectively is how much debt there is with respect to the same disposable (after tax) income measure.
22 out of the 28 Member States of the European Union (EU) currently have national minimum wages. The 6 countries in the EU that do not currently have any minimum wage level set are Denmark, Italy, Cyprus, Austria, Finland and Sweden.
Chart 1: E-Commerce Retail Sales as a Percent of Total Sales
E-Commerce retail sales are now 9.8% of total retail sales (at the end of Q3 2018). Amazon is estimated to be 50% of all E-Commerce sales in the U.S. which would mean Amazon accounts for around 5% (or $1 in every $20 spent) of all retail sales in the U.S.