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RIP Sam Zell, Home Depot Falls Off and Remodels are Mid
Episode 14323rd May 2023 • The Higher Standard • Chris Naghibi & Saied Omar
00:00:00 00:53:31

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According to a report from the Commerce Department, retail sales increased but fell short of expectations. The advanced sales report showed an increase of 0.4%, below the Dow Jones estimate for 0.8%. Excluding auto-related figures, sales increased 0.4%, which was in line with expectations. As the numbers are not adjusted for inflation, the headline increase equaled the 0.4% monthly rise in the consumer price index. On an annual basis, sales were up just 1.6%, well below the 4.9% CPI pace.

In this episode of The Higher Standard, Chris and Saied examine this news and determine the effect it will have on the economy as a whole.

They discuss news that stock in Home Depot tumbled more than 5%, or $13 a share, in premarket trading, which was worth about 100 points on the Dow Jones Industrial Average. Once trading opened, the stock recovered some of its gains, and was recently down about 1.5%, still big enough to shave about 30 points off the Dow.

Chris and Saied look at a Census Bureau survey, showing that more Americans struggle to meet expenses now than in the immediate aftermath of the Covid-19 pandemic, when millions lost their means of employment. About 38.5% of American adults — or 89.1 million people — faced difficulty in paying for usual home expenses between April 26 and May 8. That’s up from 34.4% a year ago and 26.7% during the same period in 2021.

They also offer some thoughts on the passing of Chicago real estate magnate Sam Zell, who earned a multibillion-dollar fortune and a reputation as “the grave dancer” for his ability to revive moribund properties.

Join Chris and Saied for this fascinating and informative conversation.


What You’ll Learn in this Show:

  • Why retail sales rose 0.4% in April, and why this is indicative of bad things to come.
  • The concept of a real estate trust.
  • A University of Michigan report showing that consumer sentiment is at an all-time low.
  • Why Home Depot is warning of annual sales drop for the first time since 2009.
  • And so much more...


"Home Depot just forecast weak consumer demand — here’s what that could mean for the rest of the economy" (CNBC)

"Almost 90 million American adults struggle to make ends meet, Census says" (Bloomberg Business)

"Retail sales rose 0.4% in April, less than expected as consumers struggle with inflation" (CNBC)

"Americans Curb Spending on Home Improvements" (The Wall Street Journal)

"Home Improvement Goes on Hiatus" (The Wall Street Journal)

"Experts Predict Home Improvement Spending to Decline by 2024" (M Report)