Oct

9

Many have commented about an apparent conflict between the current payroll data and payroll tax receipts. One analyst specifically used the phrase "Social Security receipts." However, Social Security receipts are not the same as Federal withholding tax receipts. The Social Security data have considerably different intrayear seasonality, and of course do not include the very high-end individuals.

We download the withholding tax data daily, and post a chart at the end of each week.

Apparently, Trimtabs looks at the annual growth rates in whichever data they are examining. We confirm that whether you look at monthly, quarterly or annual federal withholding, the current growth rates are accelerating on the downside. The annual growth rate however is not yet negative, whereas monthly and quarterly growth are actually negative. At the moment, the market is ignoring these data. Typically, effects of the daily data have a five-week lag, and we are now in the fifth week. However, we all trade the market, not the tax data!

We have encountered some problems in pursuit of knowledge down this alley.

The Treasury reports its data differently on its Daily Treasury Statement and its Monthly Treasury Statement. Attempted communication with the group responsible within the Treasury has been unsuccessful, making it nearly impossible for us to reconcile the differences in the reported figures. By differences I refer to the fact that monthly total of the figures reported in the Daily Treasury Statement does not agree with the data reported in the Monthly Treasury Statement.

The Treasury reports its data differently on its Daily Treasury Statement and its Monthly Treasury Statement. Attempted communication with the group responsible within the Treasury has been unsuccessful, making it nearly impossible for us to reconcile the differences in the reported figures. By differences I refer to the fact that monthly total of the figures reported in the Daily Treasury Statement does not agree with the data reported in the Monthly Treasury Statement.

Also, the figures are reported not seasonally adjusted. That makes it difficult for the average researcher to draw any conclusions. Seasonal adjustment of data is not difficult to do, if one has the data. That also presents a problem because the older archived data are in .pdf form rather than .txt. Conspiracy theorists thus have considerable grist for the mill. However, as H. L. Mencken said, "Never attribute to deviousness that which can easily be explained by stupidity." We have managed to overcome those problems and build a dataset of the Daily Treasury Statement going back to 1997, and seasonally adjust it. With application, most others can also. The Daily Treasury Statement series also contains Corporate Tax receipts data, which may be of interest to some.


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