Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Another Item for Your Watch List

A muddy field can ruin your day...

We try to give out action items here at FutureJacked, in addition to the occasional rant on economics, politics, war and energy. Here are two items for you to keep on your radar.


Crops

Not to alarm you, but it's wet out here in Flyover Country. The most recent Crop Progress and Condition report for Missouri is ugly:

Agricultural Summary
Continuing rains and below normal temperatures have all farm activities and crop progress well behind the normal pace, while temperatures dropped to the lower 30’s the later part of the week. There were 1.6 days suitable for fieldwork. Warmer weather is urgently needed for producers to begin planting in earnest. Spring tillage is 24 percent complete, over a month behind last year and the 5-year average. State-wide, topsoil moisture rates 48 percent adequate and 52 surplus...

...Corn planting is 8 percent complete for the State, nearly 4 weeks behind last year...

Now, this is not a crisis by any means.

Yet.

Keep an eye out for ag stories or check in on crop progress reports for various big ag states. Mississippi is having serious problems with flooding and there is talk of a drought later in the year. With grain stocks at historic lows, you want to be ahed of the curve on any potential shortages come year-end. The time to plan is now. Something to think about when those of you in the U.S. get your check from the guvmint. Instead of spending it on crack and hookers - or the Wal-Mart equivalent thereof - you might think about adding to your pantry. Just a thought...


A Musical Socionomic Alarm

As you all know, I try and monitor non-traditional indicators that help gauge the changing social mood, in the context of socionomics.

Listening to a country station on the drive home yesterday gave me another indicator for you. If you hear a popular country artist remake Merle Haggard's "Are the Good Times Really Over for Good?" or Bocephus' "A Country Boy Can Survive" - and it hits in the Top Ten on the Country charts, then you can rest assurred you are nearing a bottom in social mood - or are at least on the steep downhill side of the slope.

Both songs were hits in 1981 - a great year to make major countertrend moves into equities and U.S. Treasuries. Had you used those tunes as a socionomic signal, you would have been scouring around for bargains.

This is NOT investment advice, just an observation.

Keep your eyes open and your powder dry, friends.

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