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Let's All Embrace the V-Shaped Recovery
Real Clear Markets ^ | April 10, 2010 | Larry Kudlow

Posted on 04/11/2010 4:13:41 AM PDT by expat_panama

Sometimes you have to take out your political lenses and look at the actual statistics to get a true picture of the health of the American economy. Right now, those statistics are saying a modest cyclical rebound following a very deep downturn could actually be turning into a full-fledged, V-shaped, recovery boom between now and year-end.

I'm aiming this thought especially at many of my conservative friends who seem to be trashing the improving economic outlook -- largely, it would appear, to discredit the Obama administration.

Don't do it folks. It's a mistake. The numbers are the numbers. And prosperity is a welcome development for a nation that has suffered mightily.

Credibility is at issue here. Conservative credibility. Capitalist credibility.

Now, I have written extensively about the tax-and-regulatory threats of the Obamanomics big-government assault. But most of that is in the future. The current reality is that a strong rebound in corporate profits (the greatest and truest stimulus of all), ultra-easy money from the Fed, and some small stimuli from government spending are working to generate a stronger-than-expected recovery in a basically free-market economy that is a lot more resilient than capitalist critics think.

Rather than blow their credibility over a cyclical rebound that is backed by the statistics, free-market conservatives should tell it like it is.

Let's begin with the March employment numbers recently released by the Labor Department. Those numbers were solid. People say small businesses are getting killed by taxes and regulations from Washington, but the reality is that the small-business household employment survey has produced 1.1 million new jobs in the first quarter of 2010, or 371,000 per month. If that continues, the unemployment rate will drop significantly.

Additionally, the corporate payroll number for March increased by 224,000 -- not 162,000 as some claim -- with the prior two months being revised up by 62,000. And this is being led by private-sector job creation.

And according to just-released data, retail chain-store sales for the year ending in March were up a blowout 10 percent. Ten percent. That's a V-shaped recovery. And the real-time ISM purchasing-managers reports for manufacturing and services indicate that the economy in the next few quarters could be much, much stronger than the consensus expects -- maybe 5 to 6 percent. Another V-shaped recovery.

Commodity charts, meanwhile, are roaring. All manner of raw industrial materials have been booming -- iron ore, steel, you name it. More V-shaped recovery. So with higher commodity prices running virtually across-the-board, there is every incentive for rapid inventory-rebuilding. (Inventory prices are going up as commodity prices go up.)

At this point it's impossible to project a long-lived economic boom, such as we had following the deep recession of the early 1980s. For one thing, tax rates will rise in 2011 for successful earners and investors, quite unlike the Reagan cuts of the 1980s. So it's possible that entrepreneurs and investors are bringing income, activity, and investment forward into 2010 in order to beat the tax man in 2011. This would artificially boost this year's economy, stealing from next year's economy.

Recall that when Hillary Clinton took her Rose Law Firm bonus in December 1992, rather than January 1993, she knew full well that her husband Bill would raise the top tax rate in 1993. So the fourth quarter of 1992 grew at nearly 4.5 percent, but the first quarter of 1993 saw less than 1 percent growth. The temporary growth spurt for all of 1992 was 4.3 percent, but activity dropped to 2.7 percent the following year.

It could happen again in 2010 and 2011. Although the Obamacons deny it, tax-rate incentives matter a lot.

And at some point, monetary policy will tighten, with higher interest rates on top of higher tax rates. That, too, could slow growth markedly next year. And then there's the dozen tax hikes in the Obamacare health takeover, and a possible VAT attack from Paul Volcker, all of which will work against growth in the out-years.

Clearly, we are not operating a supply-side, free-market model today. What I wish for is sound money and lower tax rates, which would promote sustainable economic growth. Instead, we're getting easier money and higher tax rates, which could mean a temporary boom today and disappointingly slow growth after that.

But then again, who knows? Maybe the tea-party revolution overturns the obstacles to future growth and the boom is sustained. Free-market populism and a return to Reaganism, along with an anti-federal-spending coalition that is the most powerful force in politics today, could right the economic ship.

That's the credible take.


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Government; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: business; crackpot; economy; keyensian; recovery
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1 posted on 04/11/2010 4:13:41 AM PDT by expat_panama
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To: expat_panama
There's a more appropriate symbol to describe this "recovery." However, it is not a letter:

\

2 posted on 04/11/2010 4:16:44 AM PDT by pnh102 (Regarding liberalism, always attribute to malice what you think can be explained by stupidity. - Me)
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To: SAJ; 1rudeboy; Mase; Toddsterpatriot
Credibility is at issue here. Conservative credibility. Capitalist credibility.

--except we need to remember that our goal is truth and reality, and not some vain effort to convince those who're delusional by choice.

3 posted on 04/11/2010 4:18:06 AM PDT by expat_panama
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To: expat_panama

larry is a moron. He’s the type of person that gives capitalist a bad name. If you’re a believer of capitalism, theres no way you could believe any of the current policies can lead to prosperity. Capitalism is a economic philosophy. You either believe it or you don’t.


4 posted on 04/11/2010 4:19:09 AM PDT by 4rcane
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To: expat_panama
Come on Larry you are smarter then this.

Let's begin with the March employment numbers recently released by the Labor Department. Those numbers were solid. People say small businesses are getting killed by taxes and regulations from Washington, but the reality is thatthe small-business household employment survey has produced 1.1 million new jobs in the first quarter of 2010, or 371,000 per month. If that continues, the unemployment rate will drop significantly.<./b>

THIS number from the BLS is completely made up. It is the BLS best GUESS. There is NO way to accurately measure this number. What Larry is arguing is "trust the Government". Sorry we know better. Given Obama's regimes past history of inflating the initial numbers then quietly adjusting them downward later in the month, it is utterly foolish to take any of their numbers at face value.

5 posted on 04/11/2010 4:19:27 AM PDT by MNJohnnie (Will work for guns and ammo!.)
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To: pnh102
Image Hosted by ImageShack.us
6 posted on 04/11/2010 4:20:29 AM PDT by cripplecreek (Remember the River Raisin! (look it up))
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To: expat_panama

The great zero is claiming his policies are causing the improvement, such as it is.
His policies, in reality, are going to tank the economy in a big way. We’ve got to look past the end of our noses and see what’s coming if we allow the great zero and congress to persist in their economic folly.


7 posted on 04/11/2010 4:22:27 AM PDT by Scotsman will be Free (11C - Indirect fire, infantry - High angle hell - We will bring you, FIRE)
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To: 4rcane

Central economic planner do not work. Government can certainly mark alot of problems by printing ALOT of money which gives illussion of prosperity. Apparently Larry rather the illusion that reality. As long as Maddoff is conning ppl and they still believing they’re geting insane return, then all is fine. To Larry, the problem are ppl who’s trying to tell ppl Maddoff is not a conman. He rather live in the illusion


8 posted on 04/11/2010 4:22:33 AM PDT by 4rcane
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To: expat_panama

Of one other thing to ask Larry. Considering the billions of dollars being written down by corporations right now to pay for Obamacare, just how long does he think this “v shaped recovery” going to last?


9 posted on 04/11/2010 4:24:02 AM PDT by MNJohnnie (Will work for guns and ammo!.)
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To: Scotsman will be Free
We’ve got to look past the end of our noses

True, and the point here is that we've got to be honest enough to see our noses first.

10 posted on 04/11/2010 4:25:22 AM PDT by expat_panama
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To: MNJohnnie

“my conservative friends who seem to be trashing the improving economic outlook — largely, it would appear, to discredit the Obama administration.”
****************

I heard him say this on his radio show last week. Quite frankly, it didn’t pass the sniff test or have the ring of truth then, and it doesn’t now, either.


11 posted on 04/11/2010 4:25:27 AM PDT by Canedawg (I'm not digging this tyranny thing.)
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To: cripplecreek

great pic and very apt. You’ll be sent to room 101 for that thoughtcrime.


12 posted on 04/11/2010 4:25:38 AM PDT by trashcanbred2
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To: expat_panama

is that why so many businesses are closing, almost weekly, because we are headed to recovery?

I don’t know who this moron is, but he sure isn’t much of an economist. Obama butt bot is more appropriate.

Why do these creeps always come out of the wood work ...


13 posted on 04/11/2010 4:25:59 AM PDT by Tarpon ( ...Rude crude socialist Obama depends on ignorance to force his will on people)
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To: Tarpon
Kudlow wrote this, didn't he? Kudlow is pretty good, but he is human and fallible.
14 posted on 04/11/2010 4:27:47 AM PDT by Lazamataz ("We beat the Soviet Union. Then we became them." -- Lazamataz, 2005)
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To: MNJohnnie
how long does he think this “v shaped recovery” going to last?

By asking how long it will last, you're saying it exists.  That's good.

15 posted on 04/11/2010 4:28:19 AM PDT by expat_panama
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To: expat_panama

What about default? If we can’t avoid default then it doesn’t matter what the shape of the recovery is right now.


16 posted on 04/11/2010 4:30:10 AM PDT by Partisan Gunslinger
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To: expat_panama

its time to buy rice, ammo and toilet paper... Svckers rally... Yes, that’s a ‘v’ in suckers ;)


17 posted on 04/11/2010 4:31:45 AM PDT by dubie (The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants.)
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To: expat_panama
How long does he think this “v shaped recovery” going to last?

I see reading comprehensive is not one of your strengths. Try reading it again.

18 posted on 04/11/2010 4:31:47 AM PDT by MNJohnnie (Will work for guns and ammo!.)
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To: expat_panama

The slope of the right side is near flat. There is an upward trend but the slope value is small.

It is similar to a hockystick, not a v. :}


19 posted on 04/11/2010 4:33:58 AM PDT by bert (K.E. N.P. +12 . Ostracize Democrats. There can be no Democrat friends.)
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To: Lazamataz

Every one goes off the rails from time to time. Writing delusional pieces is the way it happens. Most regimes send the media to the gulags to purify the species. Maybe this is how they try and avoid the the enviableness.

As the lies pile up, I read only the real data and reports, draw my own conclusions. It’s far easier to spot the lies that way. The books they are a cooking, and eventually the truth is not able to be hidden anymore.

yes, I know who Kudlow is ... And ignore him for the most part. Handing out fiat money to free loaders does not a sustainable economy make -— All the two bit tin pots who have gone before, have proved that point. And a short real video from Venezuela today, would show you in a few short minutes slavery still hasn’t been perfected.


20 posted on 04/11/2010 4:34:22 AM PDT by Tarpon ( ...Rude crude socialist Obama depends on ignorance to force his will on people)
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To: Partisan Gunslinger
If we can’t avoid default then it doesn’t matter...

Ah.  So if you're throwing away all your worthless Federal Reserve Notes, please let me know and I'll come over and haul away your trash for you.

21 posted on 04/11/2010 4:35:02 AM PDT by expat_panama
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To: expat_panama

Who’s numbers? Cooked Books anyone? He must be limiting his reading sources. Last I looked, the Republics of Kalefornia and New Yuk are about to collapse. Since either is greater in size than most of the European Socialist Combined; America, I think we have a problem.


22 posted on 04/11/2010 4:35:10 AM PDT by Steamburg (The contents of your wallet is the only language Politicians understand.)
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To: expat_panama
Credibility is at issue here. Conservative credibility. Capitalist credibility.

Yes, it is Larry. And, this is the form of capitalism that has ruined our country. Look at the now and make your money and to hell with the long term outlook!

Capitalism, like socialism loses its credibility when it espouses taking profit in the short term to the detriment of the long term.

Giving Obama and credit for this small spike is absurd. I STILL don't know what the market is growing on.

23 posted on 04/11/2010 4:37:53 AM PDT by raybbr (I hate B(ig) H(ead) Obama)
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To: expat_panama

If it is to be a “V” it will be a peculiar one. This “V” already has a wide flat bottom, if bottom it be.


24 posted on 04/11/2010 4:38:20 AM PDT by arthurus ("If you don't believe in shooting abortionists, don't shoot an abortionist." -Ann C.)
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To: expat_panama
Funny how the Fed itself has a totally different take vs. talking head Kudlow. <> http://www.comstockfunds.com/%28X%281%29S%28g0fs14id0dat14fjwra0n445%29%29/default.aspx?CFID=1912545&CFTOKEN=15217845&MenuItemID=29&&AspxAutoDetectCookieSupport=1
25 posted on 04/11/2010 4:41:23 AM PDT by techrules2002
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To: expat_panama
I like Mr. Kudlow, but this time he's wrong.

I have written extensively about the tax-and-regulatory threats of the Obamanomics big-government assault. But most of that is in the future.

But, Larry, business makes decisions about expansion based on perceptions of the future business climate. It's clear that, if Obama's policies are implemented, the climate will be dismal.

Apart from health care uncertainty, there's the specter of CO2 caps that the EPA is implementing very soon as well as quickly rising energy prices with no opportunity to drill in the US.

The economy will undoubtedly improve somewhat, but business is not going to spend any capital on expansion. Economic growth is synonymous with capital accumulation -- we're consuming capital; not accumulating it.

The recovery may, indeed, be "v-shaped", but it will be a distinctly lower-case "v".

26 posted on 04/11/2010 4:45:09 AM PDT by BfloGuy (It is not from the benevolence of the butcher, the brewer, or the baker, that we can expect . . .)
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To: dubie
I said it before and I'll say it again......

In my opinion the markets are exactly like a slot-machine with a progressive jack pot. The number (DOW) keeps going up. but eventually someone is going to pull the lever and cash out...... everyone else will be left feeding the machine.

I can't see anything that put the markets to increase... jobs continue to be lossed, spending continues to increase, taxes continue to increase, and companies continue to release reports they will take healthcare hits in the tens of millions, hundreds of millions, and even billions of dollars...... this just spells more layoffs, downsizing of industry (or moving offshore), followed by a shrinking tax base. It seems like we're just circling the bowl, but they can't quite plunge us down (I apologize for that visual).

The only thing I could see making a "V" is money. Deflation as more people stop buying and prices drop...... followed by a hyperinflationary lift off as funny money hits the system and the interest rates rise because our creditor masters want better return on their money.

27 posted on 04/11/2010 4:45:14 AM PDT by Repeat Offender (While the wicked stand confounded, call me with Thy Saints surrounded)
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To: 4rcane
"Capitalism" is actually a whole group of theories. It is really only the use of surplus value created by more efficient ways to produce things in order to make production even more efficient or to initiate production of goods not previously produced. Free Market Capitalism is what you mean, I think. After all, the name of Mr. Marx's opus was Das Kapital(Capital) and socialism is just another form of capitalism in that it is a theory about how to create, conserve, and organize capital i.e. accumulated surplus value. It is a theory that is grievously wrong if the goal is any sort of prosperity for more than a very narrow elite but it is still a theory of capitalism. Mercantilism is another. Freemarket capitalism in a politically free system is the engine that will send man to the stars in short order if it does not get smothered under socialist arrangements.
28 posted on 04/11/2010 4:47:52 AM PDT by arthurus ("If you don't believe in shooting abortionists, don't shoot an abortionist." -Ann C.)
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To: expat_panama

Kudlow always is a sunny optimist when it comes to the economy. Nothing new about that. He is what he is.

Of course he is wrong about a recovery. Once the Bush tax cuts expire and taxes go up because of ObamaCare then the economy will tank hard.


29 posted on 04/11/2010 4:50:09 AM PDT by Ticonderoga34 (Free Obama's Birth Certificate!)
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To: expat_panama

....I want to see solid corporate earnings before I’m convinced.


30 posted on 04/11/2010 4:50:13 AM PDT by STONEWALLS
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To: MNJohnnie

I think he is not discerning between a “sustaining” economy and a “roaring” economy. We saw a somewhat “roaring” or at least well-engaged economy during most of the Bush tenure. Housing prices up and unemployment way down. In fact 4% unemployment is considered “full-employment”, the theory being there are always 4% of workers, moving and looking for work or quitting for personal reasons. In other words, in 2005/06, if you didn’t have a job, you probably didn’t want a job.

Not so, now. People are being laid off and the remaining workers are doing 2 and 3 people’s jobs. As a result, efficiency, and therefore productivity is up and this leads to the stock market going up. But this is a sustaining economy ... people are buying only what they need. Extras and luxuries are generally not being purchased. So Kudlow sees commodities going up. Right, i.e., basics to the economy.

But this will not lead to increased employment. Higher taxes, even by his own words will put the brakes on any small recovery.

Here is a small example from the current news. Nicolas Cage put his island mansion up for sale for 35 million and got no offers whatsoever. Would this have happened back in 2006? I don’t think so.

I believe conservative principles are always right. Any economy has variables and ups and downs. But in the long run, if you want to increase employment, lower taxes. Lower interest rates. Reduce regulations. Reduce entitlemnents and welfare. When you do this, just about everyone is looking for a job and the economy picks up. It’s not hard to know what to do, just hard for Democrats to do it.


31 posted on 04/11/2010 4:50:22 AM PDT by JohnEBoy
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To: Repeat Offender

not to mention most state governments in the red, California is toast... It appears the very worst is still yet to come. I hope it turns around but our money is worthless paper backed only by debt and false promises.


32 posted on 04/11/2010 4:53:01 AM PDT by dubie (The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants.)
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To: SAJ; MNJohnnie; Tarpon
It's natural that most think of jobs/employment.  That's fair, but it means looking at the hiring that was done yesterday and ignoring the hiring that can happen tomorrow.  Others, like those working with commodities/equities have to focus on where we're going, not where we've been --they don't call 'em "futures" for nothing.

We need to remember to make the good better.   All this toxic depression is for losers.

33 posted on 04/11/2010 4:54:56 AM PDT by expat_panama
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To: expat_panama

Larry must have had some really good mushrooms on his pizza last night.

Why is it so hard to comprehend that the ONLY thing that is producing these outward (and temporary) signs of “recovery” is MASSIVE and unsustainable spending of money we don’t have and will never be able to repay, by our criminal federal government?


34 posted on 04/11/2010 4:56:40 AM PDT by Zeddicus
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To: expat_panama

phhhhllllltttt — You can talk yourself into anything ... That doesn’t make it true. The people I know have and had real businesses.

One friend down the street shuttered his decades long company employing 700 people because the turnaround is just ahead.

Another fellow has put his plumbing company on sustained life support in the last few weeks. He did new home construction. Said the market had washed out for new homes. Turnaround ahead.

The car dealer friend has closed and sold off his lot ... Because the turnaround is just ahead.

Turnaround just ahead — Printing money is a fools game to play for ignorant people’s votes. Like South America where there is no middle class, only wealthy and the underclass, like Kenya.

Nothing will change until we get rid of the Marxist debris infecting our government. Regardless what Kudlow or the rest have to say.


35 posted on 04/11/2010 5:05:25 AM PDT by Tarpon ( ...Rude crude socialist Obama depends on ignorance to force his will on people)
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To: expat_panama

Good article Larry. Yes we are headed on the road to ruin. No that doesn’t mean there are no hills on the road. Pretending there aren’t makes people look as self-delusional as the obamabots. And absolutely true, if we get a clean sweep in November key points could change.


36 posted on 04/11/2010 5:06:50 AM PDT by Rippin
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To: Zeddicus
Why is it so hard to comprehend that the ONLY thing that is producing these outward (and temporary) signs of “recovery” is MASSIVE and unsustainable spending of money

The American public has been lied to for so very long that they believe the state run media and they no longer think, in fact, it appears they cannot think independently.

What is obvious to you and me is unthinkable to the American public. Obama is a radical who is destroying America and he will continue until he is stopped.

37 posted on 04/11/2010 5:09:53 AM PDT by politicianslie (Lying got Obama elected, they don't care what you think, shut up and pay your taxes)
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To: expat_panama

I hope you, and Mr Kudlow are right. I am one of those people in the job market right now. I am trying to relocate to GA to be with my wife and kids.

However, I just do not see how a regime that has done every single thing, it could do economically, wrong still manages to produce a V shaped recovery.


38 posted on 04/11/2010 5:16:30 AM PDT by MNJohnnie (Will work for guns and ammo!.)
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To: MNJohnnie
“small stimuli from government spending are working to generate a stronger-than-expected recovery”

WTF? How do you call running up trillions of dollars of unfunded liabilities and debt conducive to economic recovery? The dirty little secret in all this is that by the end of this year taxation will be greatly ramped up on the investing class and all they are doing at this point is trying to maximize profits before selling off before the storm.

39 posted on 04/11/2010 5:22:57 AM PDT by RU88
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To: RU88

Yes, some ‘economist’ may being there is a very important election in November. Spring time always add jobs. Will Summer, Fall and Winter follow Kudlow’s trend? Not with narrow ‘tax credits’ being the incentive.


40 posted on 04/11/2010 5:46:11 AM PDT by Son House (The Reagan question to Democrat Majority in Congress; Are you better off than you were 4 years ago?)
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To: All

Alot of money is being made in the market.

Don’t let your politics keep you out.

Obama sucks but the American economy is recovering.


41 posted on 04/11/2010 6:28:58 AM PDT by rbmillerjr (Let hot tar wash their throats and may it flow freely.)
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To: expat_panama

what is he smoking?


42 posted on 04/11/2010 7:00:53 AM PDT by zwerni (this isn't gonna be good for business)
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To: expat_panama
The Great Correction…Still Pending
43 posted on 04/11/2010 7:03:32 AM PDT by blam
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To: rbmillerjr

All that is happening is money tinkering. Nothing fundamental is improving. Government is still becoming more invasive, taxes are increasing, energy and mineral production are still being handcuffed, and market forces are increasingly being hampered by central control. The model for this economy is Japan, which also saw teasing semblances of recovery, only to be disappointed with continuous malaise. Is the US any more special that it deserves some magical dispensation from economic law?


44 posted on 04/11/2010 7:24:06 AM PDT by qwertypie
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To: expat_panama

Besides being a market cheerleader, Kudlow also is a grating blowhard. His style makes me change the channel.


45 posted on 04/11/2010 7:27:17 AM PDT by qwertypie
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To: expat_panama

‘The numbers are the numbers’

And millions are still unemployed and 400,000 a month still losing jobs. Government is doing great.

Average Joe’s, not so much. the numbers are the numbers....


46 posted on 04/11/2010 8:44:32 AM PDT by Freddd (CNN is down to Three Hundred Thousand viewers. But they worked for it.)
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To: expat_panama

While America was down on bended knee, Obama kicked her and raped her.


47 posted on 04/11/2010 8:45:59 AM PDT by Freddd (CNN is down to Three Hundred Thousand viewers. But they worked for it.)
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To: qwertypie

Actually, if you go to Yahoo Finance and click on the economic indicators data link you’ll find about 10 different data measurements that show an improving economy.


48 posted on 04/11/2010 9:51:32 PM PDT by rbmillerjr (Let hot tar wash their throats and may it flow freely.)
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To: rbmillerjr
Yup!..the market is up!

Now..tell me about VOLUME and who's making it...it aint us!

(Pssst...HINT: GS... do youre own DD)

49 posted on 04/11/2010 10:18:03 PM PDT by M-cubed
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To: rbmillerjr

Of course, the business cycle is pulling indicators up. That is what occurs naturally as panic subsides and people with money begin opening their wallets, and as the federal government force feeds borrowed money into the system. It happens with even the cruddiest economies. So what, though? Individual spendthrifts go on spending binges again once a new source of borrowed money is given to them, too. That masks the underlying problem, not cure it. I listed the megatrends that are killing this country, and all Obama has done is to exacerbate them.

The business climate in this country is not healthy and getting worse. A little zig upwards from the bottom doesn’t change the deteriorating fundamentals.


50 posted on 04/12/2010 1:10:04 AM PDT by qwertypie
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