There is some good news to report today in that applications for unemployment fell to a seasonally adjusted 390,000, the third decline in four weeks. This comes as economic growth ticked up a bit as well. Economists are still worried however, that consumer spending rose only as household revenues decreased indicating people are using credit again making less money. With crude on the rise again and gas prices soon to follow for the holidays, Wall Street is “sketchy” at best in its forecasts, though the Dow did manage to hold on to modest gains today after yesterday’s plunge. This is probably due in part to some possible stability being reported from overseas within the last 24 hours.
Truth be told, our economic prognosis is still grim at best considering businesses are hedging their bets to make certain they survive. Additionally, and in the absence of any real growth spurring initiatives by this Administration, and with a national debt that looks only to climb dramatically over the next five years, job creators in America are simply looking to outlast the bad times and emerge on the other side. This understandable consensus is only aggravated by the lack of any level of confidence that might be instilled by the current political climate in Washington. Regrettably, I see these infinitesimal upward movements as only the gasps of a grievously wounded economic engine in need of immediate, tangible and “real” stimulus.