Record-Breaking Data Everywhere!

One of the interesting aspects of this unprecedented housing collapse, credit crisis, economic recession and market crash has been all the new records we keep seeing:

• Over the past year, the S&P 500 index lost ~$1 trillion more than the entire 2000-2002 bear market, according to Standard & Poor’s. From the October 2007 highs of 1,565, to yesterday’s close of 806.58, the S&P 500 market capitalization lost $6.69 trillion. That’s almost $1 trillion more than entire 2000-03 bear market losses of $5.76 trillion. (Marketwatch)

• The S&P 500 hasn’t been this far below its 200-day moving average on a percentage basis since The Great Depression. (Doug Kass)

• CPI: U.S. consumer prices in October registered their largest single-month decline since before World War II. It is the largest monthly drop in the 61-year history of the data;

• PPI, down 2.8% for the month, was also record breaking drop.

• The dividend yield on the S&P 500 is now greater than the yield on the 10-year Treasury. That hasn’t happened since 1958. (Barron’s)

• First-time claims for U.S. unemployment insurance rose to the highest level since September 2001. The total number of people on unemployment benefit rolls jumped to the highest level since 1983.

• Housing starts fell to 791,000, off 38% from a year ago. That’s the slowest pace of starts since data began being compiled in 1959. Starts are now down 65% from the early 2006 peak — this has become the very worst housing downturn on record.

• Permits for new houses, at a 708,000 pace, were off 40% from a year ago, also the lowest total since it has been tracked starting in 1960. Put this into context of population — in 1960, the total U.S. population stood at 180 million — 60% of today’s 300 million.

more Doug Kass: The 30-year return for BBB-rated corporate bonds is now greater than the 30-year return for stocks. So it has not paid to take equity risk for 30 years! (The

• The TIPS Spread ( Treasury Inflation Protected Securities versus the 10-year Treasury) is at a record low 54 basis points (1997)

• The Russell 3,000 now has 1228 stocks a share price under $10. That’s 42% of the index. At the market’s 2002 lows, there were significantly less stocks trading below $10/share — just 884 (Bespoke Group).

Originally published at The Big Picture blog and reproduced here with the author’s permission.