Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Beneath Gloom, Signs of a New Economic Vibrancy

Now, after months of seemingly nonstop bad news, there are hopeful signs on the horizon. Below the surface of gloom, there are signs of a new vibrancy. They include:

• A broad rally in stocks, confirmed last Thursday, continuing into this week and led by the beaten-down financials.
• A surprising 22% surge in February housing starts to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 583,000 units.
• A back-to-back jump in retail sales ex autos, in both January and February.
• A return to profitability at several major banks, including Citigroup, Bank of America and JPMorgan.
• A doubling in the obscure but important Baltic Dry Index, a key indicator of global trade flows.
• An upwardly sloping yield curve, which Fed research suggests all but ensures a rebound by year-end.
• A Housing Affordability Index that has hit an all-time high.
• A two-month improvement in wholesale used-car prices, measured by the Manheim Index.
• A rise in Monster's Employment Index in February, suggesting a turn in the job market may be around the corner.
• A 4 1/2-year high in the dollar against other major currencies, on a trade-weighted basis.
• A sharp increase in the money supply, as measured by M2 and M1. Weekly M2 growth has averaged 10.1% year-over-year since the start of 2009, while M1 has grown at a 14.6% rate.
• A two-month rally in the Index of Leading Indicators.
• A growing body of evidence that the "liquidity crunch" is dead. Data show nearly $14 trillion in liquidity on the sidelines of the markets, ready to boost consumer spending, credit growth or further stock market gains.

~IBD Editorial


At 3/18/2009 10:44 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

All of this before the tsunami of spending passed by the Democrats in congress hits the economy. I thought that we were doomed without the "stimulus"?

At 3/18/2009 4:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We need the "crisis" to persist else Rahmbo and company will not be able to use it to advance their agenda! "Never let a good crisis go to waste!"

At 3/18/2009 4:07 PM, Blogger marketdoc said...

It seems we didn't need the "mother-of-all-spending bills" after all. Free market capitalism is alive and well.

At 3/18/2009 5:36 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Are people starting to wake up?

Notice that these are all local news stories. The national media, firmly in the hands of the Democrat party, will only cover protests that are sponsored by unions and other leftist organizations.

At 3/18/2009 6:02 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is just too freakin' funny:

As it helps push for legislation that would make it easier for workers to organize, the country's fastest-growing union is engaged in its own labor dispute with employees it is seeking to lay off.

The Service Employees International Union, considered the most influential union in the nation, has notified the union that represents about 220 of its national field staff and organizers that 75 of them are being laid off. In return, the workers' union, which goes by the somewhat postmodern name of the Union of Union Representatives, has filed unfair labor practices charges against SEIU with the National Labor Relations Board. The staff union's leaders say that SEIU is engaging in the same kind of practices that some businesses use -- laying off workers without proper notice, contracting out work to temp firms, banning union activities and reclassifying workers to reduce union numbers.

"It's completely hypocritical," said staff union President Malcolm Harris. "This is the union that's been at the forefront of progressive issues, around ensuring that working people and working families are taken care of, but when it comes to the people that work for SEIU, they haven't set the same standards."

Washington Post

At 3/18/2009 7:01 PM, Blogger Kelly D. Miller said...

That is hilarious!


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