Internet gains, middle-class losses and more
Amazon takes J.C. Penney's lunch
As a percentage of the total pie, Internet retailers like Amazon are increasingly capturing American wallet share from department-store operators like J.C. Penney. The nonstore category of the retail sales report does include more than Internet-based retailers, but the chart clearly represents the changing shopping patterns of Americans.
Retail sales fall
For the second month, retail sales dropped in May. Part of the decline comes from Americans buying fuel -- good news, really -- but many other categories also showed weak growth or outright declines.
Slowing rate of inflation
As gasoline prices drop from highs, the rate of inflation has been coming down. However, core inflation -- that is, excluding food and energy -- has held constant, and core inflation tends to be a better predictor of future inflation.
Middle-class wealth disappears
A Federal Reserve survey quantified just how much wealth was lost during the recession by the typical family: 39%. That's overwhelmingly a function of the house price bubble bursting. The chart here shows median wealth by percentile.
Why is Greece holding elections on Sunday for the second time in two months? This chart shows why, with unemployment spiking higher as the country implements the austerity package imposed as a condition of the two bailouts it's received (so far).
U.S. industrial output
Industrial production growth in the U.S. has slowed compared to the latter part of last year, and the incredible growth in auto production also has slowed a bit.
Euro-zone industrial output
The rest of Europe isn't doing so hot, either. The negative readings on industrial output point to a Continent in recession.
Chinese lending growth
A small bit of good news is that China seems to have stabilized after a few rocky months. The chart here shows Chinese lending growth on a year-on-year basis still running in the 15% range.