Markets & Economy

Nobody knows how healthy housing really is

Commentary: Every modern Fed tightening cycle has ended in recession

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Today's sleepy, semiholiday dawn was interrupted by news of a surge in new jobs, up 195,000 in June plus 70,000 in upward revisions of prior months. Every bond big shot is at the beach, heard the news through hangover fog, and then barked or texted "sell," and went back to sleep. The 10-year T-note jumped almost a quarter-point to 2.72 percent, putting the most vulnerable mortgage borrowers close to 5 percent. Gold's in a new collapse, to $1,215, and stocks are struggling to decide whether good economic news is worth a tightening Fed. Those of us who are little shots, working stiffs today, read on. Most of the new jobs were low-end: retail, hospitality, business services and health care. Construction added a piddling 13,000, and manufacturing shrank for a fourth month. "Involuntary part time" rose, the 25-54 age group weakened, and the unemployment rate stayed the same at 7.6 percent, new jobs a push versus new people trying to find work. The one legitimate bright spot: ...