No Cause For Optimism In The Real World

The latest Conference Board measurement of consumer confidence is out.  It recorded another decline, marking the fourth straight month the index fell, and surprised experts who’d predicted a smaller drop in consumer confidence.

I’m skeptical about efforts to measure consumer confidence in a country as large and diverse as America.  I wasn’t consulted.  Were any of our readers?  (How about a show of hands?)  And the only surprising thing, really, is that economic experts would be surprised about their inability to  forecast something as unpredictable as consumer sentiment.  Economists are almost always wrong in their predictions.  Why do you think Thomas Carlyle called economics “the dismal science”?  The weather forecast on my iPhone AccuWeather forecast is far more reliable than the musings of out-of-touch economists.

No one in the real world is surprised that consumer confidence is slipping.  Economists do things like measure whether rates of decline in one month are smaller than the rates of decline in the prior month, and conclude that things are getting better.  People in the real world don’t think that way — we just see that decline is continuing.  Where’s the cause for optimism that significant job creation will finally start in this recession that has lingered for almost four years now?

1 thought on “No Cause For Optimism In The Real World

  1. I feel sorry for the generation behind me, limited options. When I was young and moved from one area of the country to another I knew I’d be able to find a job somewhere and, if all else failed, I could work on a factory production line. No more factories, no more production. Those jobs have been disappearing since the early 80s and now they’re gone and “they ain’t comin’ back.” The world wide recession isn’t going to improve any time soon.

    In my corner of the world, people are slowly opening their wallets to buy the things they need and to maintain the things they have. I’ve decided not to be held hostage by austerity and fear, bought a new sofa, chair, box spring/mattress and TV. If I am to be home for the duration of the recession I will be comfortable. However, I’ve been frugal and I’m employed so I have the savings to make discretionary purchases. There are many families out there who have not been as lucky.


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