Monday Musings 65

On Friday, the US Department of Labor reported that non-farm payrolls rose by 916,000 in March, a much better performance than predicted by those entities that make such predictions. The unemployment rate fell to 6.0%. (Of course, revisions will no doubt “change” those numbers.)

Just for comparison, when was the last time France had an unemployment rate of even 7 percent? Just before the “Great Recession.” That country’s unemployment rate has only been below 8 percent in two of the last 30 years. Excessive regulation of its labor market is the primary factor for that poor performance.

The blind zealots who want governments to control everything are also deniers of facts.

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According to this Corvette Blogger piece, Chevrolet/GM delivered 6,611 Corvettes in the first quarter of 2021. Corvette deliveries have not been that high in a first quarter since 2015. In addition, all four GM US brands (Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC) had double-digit year-over-year increases in retail sales. Oh, they’re not selling a lot of electric vehicles.

 

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From a Chevrolet dealer a picture of a 2021 Corvette in Elkhart Lake Blue Metallic. Of course, my first Corvette was in Blue, Electron Blue Metallic, to be precise:

 

 

C5 and C6 Corvettes are now among the best performance car bargains anywhere. This is not a Frugal Friday post, but one can find C5 Z06 Corvettes in the $25,000-$30,000 range and C6 Z06 Corvettes in the high 30s. The C6 Z06 was powered by an engine of legendary displacement, 427 cubic inches, even though it was based on small-block architecture. Output was 505 HP/470 LB-FT of torque. C’mon, a 500 HP car for less than 40 grand! What more could you want?!

Obviously from autogespot, a picture of a C6 Z06 Corvette:

 

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I will always have a soft spot for C5 Corvettes as one of those was my first Vette, but I have grown to like the looks of the C6 more. I would probably rate the C6 as the third best looking generation, behind the C2 and the C7. Anyone else care to offer their hierarchy of Corvette generation looks?

 

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4 thoughts on “Monday Musings 65

  1. The problem with the unemployment rate is that it doesn’t take into account ( I think) people who have left the job market and only counts those currently drawing unemployment funds. If people who have “dropped out” of the employment picture were counted, I suspect the rate would be closer to 10%-12%.

    That being said, it seems the economy IS starting to pick back up. Our company has been getting more requests for quotes than we have seen in a year. Problem is tho, that cost of materials has gone up a major amount. Everything from concrete to structural steel is 15-25% higher than it was a year ago. Lumber has gotten stupid expensive for various reasons, processors that shut down last year, pine beetle infestation killing off forests, higher than anticipated demand over the last year, transportation costs, etc. I had to buy some lumber to do repairs on one of my rental homes and the prices were staggering. 3/4″ flooring was $53 for a 4’x8′ sheet where last year it was around $25. Roofing shingles have doubled in price in the last 6 months also, going from $14-$17 a bundle to $31-$35.This is putting a squeeze on new home construction. There are 2 planned subdivisions in my area that are on hold at the moment. The land excavations are done, some foundations have been done, but there is no move to constructing houses on these properties.

    Hopefully later this year prices will even out and we can get to “normal”.

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    1. You are astute, sir. The unemployment rate reported in the press is called the U-3 rate. The one to which you refer about discouraged workers is called the U-6 rate. It is published with the monthly report, but seldom reported.

      The U-6 rate declined from 11.1% in February to 10.7% in March. Your estimate was right on the nose. The French rate I mentioned was their U-3, however.

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  2. I saw a segment on Jay Leno’s Garage where he drove an electric Corvette. I went looking for it and found a YouTube link to a CNN Business report about a modified Corvette that kept the 7-speed transmission but put two electric motors to work. Top speed around 220 MPH. Drive it like a stick, or put it in 3rd gear and drive it like an electric. The price of admission to this rare club? $750K. Too rich for my blood.

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