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Registered Investment Adviser Caleb Lawrence

Wholesale trade advanced .3% in September. Inventories increased noticeably for a 5th consecutive month, sales marked a 2nd consecutive solid month. A good thing as rising inventories without sales is a bad sign. The inventory to sales ratio slipped to 1.27.

While a lot of details are still absent, and much negotiation remains, Trumps tax plan, true to expected form, primarily benefits the 1%, and corporations at the expense of most everyone else. Tax and other policies over the last 30-odd years or so have skewed wealth and income distribution in the US and the world to very dangerous, and historically high levels. A recent piece by the Institute for Policy Studies noted that Trumps tax plan would not only exacerbate these problems, it went on to label it “immoral”. Using data from the Forbes 400 richest persons list the study noted that the top 3 richest people Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos and Warren Buffett combined control as much wealth as the bottom half of the entire US population, or about 160 million people. Additionally, I have repeatedly noted that income growth distribution over the last 30-years or so has been heavily skewed to the top quintile and in fact the top 1%, most everyone else has seen their real or inflation adjusted income fall. Worse the further down the socio-economic ladder you go the greater the income declines seen. While I don’t claim to have all the answers, I’ll note that from a historical perspective social instability goes hand in hand with income and wealth distribution inequality. We need policies that correct this, not ones that blow destabilizing and reckless asset bubbles, allow corporations to run roughshod over the populace, blow huge unpayable deficits and push the vast majority of Americans into a corner.

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