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Archive for Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Americans feeling better about economic recovery

February 29, 2012

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Americans are feeling better about the economy again, but will it last this time?

A widely watched barometer of consumer confidence surged in February to its highest level in a year as Americans took note of improving job prospects among friends and family and falling unemployment, which is now at a three-year low.

The brighter assessment released Tuesday by a private research group reflected a more upbeat attitude for the nation generally as the economy picks up. That is a boon for President Obama as he seeks re-election. Polls, including a recent Associated Press-GfK survey, show the Democratic incumbent is beginning to benefit politically from improved views of the economy.

“The economy is getting momentum. Clearly, shoppers are more optimistic about their job prospects,” said Amna Asaf, economist at Capital Economics.

The rising confidence among consumers gave confidence to Wall Street, too, helping it to reclaim the last of the ground it held before plunging into the depths of the Great Recession. The Dow Jones industrial average closed above 13,000 on Tuesday for the first time since May 19, 2008, four months before the fall of Lehman Brothers investment bank and the worst of the financial crisis.

Jack Ablin, chief investment officer at Harris Private Bank, called it “a momentous day for investor confidence.”

Tuesday’s gain puts the Dow 1,160 points below its all-time high, set Oct. 9, 2007. The Great Recession began two months later.

The milestone could draw some fence-sitting investors back into the market and add to the gains, said Brian Gendreau, market strategist at Cetera Financial Group.

But consumer confidence is still below the level of a healthy economy, and trouble could lie ahead. Rising gas prices could sully shoppers’ mood and derail the economic recovery. There are also fears about a nuclear showdown with Iran and the festering European debt crisis.

Comments

Steven Gaudreau 2 years, 1 month ago

It's the Kock bros forcing gas high to make Obama look bad. Anyone? anyone?

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BornAgainAmerican 2 years, 1 month ago

The new normal = Obama's failed (mis) administration. NOBama, 2012...one and done!

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its_just_math 2 years, 1 month ago

Networks Hype Rising Gas Prices 4 Times More for Bush, Than Obama

"Rising gas prices used to be big news, but not so these days. Although the national average climbed to $3.56 on Feb. 20, setting a February record after going up nearly a month straight, there was far less coverage than in 2008. Broadcast networks repeatedly covered the rise under the Bush presidency. Gas prices bounced around eventually reaching $3.56-a-gallon on April 24, 2008.

The Business and Media Institute analyzed broadcast network news references to gas or fuel prices between Jan. 20 and Feb. 20, 2012 and from March 24 and April 24, 2008. BMI found that in the 2008 period there were more than 4 times as many gas prices stories, news briefs or news headlines on ABC, CBS and NBC as there were in 2012 (97 to 21)."

http://www.mrc.org/bias-numbers/networks-hype-rising-gas-prices-4-times-more-bush-obama

More right-wing propaganda, huh Obama worshipers?

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FalseHopeNoChange 2 years, 1 month ago

Americans "feeling" better. This is why The Obama is best for "New America" in November. "New America" does not need a lighter skinned, with no Negro dialect President touting "responsibility". The 49% 'rs need The Obama to swell their "entitlements" to avoid another 1968 lovefest of riots. His OWS posse will not stand for less "entitlements".

I am really concerned about 2016. I say we pull a "Dumpling" and "cancel" elections that year.

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Richard Payton 2 years, 1 month ago

MSN and Fox both reported that the liberals were writing 4 times the articles about high gas prices during the Bush era. The price of gas has went up but the media is now mum. Articles suggest gas could be over $5.00 a gallon by June.

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autie 2 years, 1 month ago

I woke up this morning...and realized something; We are tied to the outcomes of a global economy and we ain't the big boy bully of the block anymore...not like we used to be anyway. I blame Obama, Reid, Pelosi..and the biased liberal media. And peeps. They put peeps in the candy aisle at WalMart. Peeps are part of the decline of our moral standard. Do only liberals eat peeps?

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tbaker 2 years, 1 month ago

The last paragraph says it all.

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yourworstnightmare 2 years, 1 month ago

The GOP seem to be almost 180 degrees out of sync with the economy.

Remember John McCain's "The fundamentals of the economy are sound." in early 2008?

Now, we hear the opposite, that the economy is not improving and is worse than all economic indicators suggest.

Denial of reality for political gain is the hallmark of GOP politics.

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its_just_math 2 years, 1 month ago

Step in front of a mirror for answer.

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Agnostick 2 years, 1 month ago

The usual trolls are out with their hatred and bigotry. On the bright side, Jon Stewart outed the Republican National Committee last night, for a memo they sent out to Faux News, Limbaugh, Breitbart etc. suggesting that regardless how much the economy may improve, that they keep up a steady drone of the same three issues:

1) National debt

2) Unemployment

3) Rising gas prices

http://www.mediaite.com/tv/jon-stewart-blasts-fox-news-rooting-for-america-to-fail-since-november-2008/

See the segment here. I'm searching for a web posting (preferably a PDF) of the memo in question. I'll post the link if I find it.

Agnostick agnostick@excite.com

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Liberty_One 2 years, 1 month ago

Unfortunately there will be no lasting recovery. The fundamentals have not changed at all. The national debt is still growing at an unsustainable pace, the situation in Europe has not improved, food and energy prices are still high, actual unemployment is still high, SS and Medicare are still completely underwater, the dollar is continuing to lose value.

The US will soon begin to default on its debts. Things will only get worse from there as the government tries to continue the failed policies that created this situation.

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yourworstnightmare 2 years, 1 month ago

An economic recovery! gasp

This is the worst nightmare of the republicans.

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beatrice 2 years, 1 month ago

Some people are upset that the economy is improving. It hurts their chances of getting an R in office. Party over country. That is just sad.

I hope things continue to improve, and it doesn't matter who wins in November.

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somedude20 2 years, 1 month ago

I would not get too excited because the republicans will try their best to sabotage the econ as they have said that goal #1 is to get Obama out. As we have seen, they are not afraid to kill America (and Americans) just to meet their goal.

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camper 2 years, 1 month ago

Consumer confidence feeds on itself. Sometimes it is the unknown factor that gets the engines of the economy running. When good news comes out it is best to take the cup is half full approach. Lets give this confidence a chance....lets not quelch it for partisan reasons.

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its_just_math 2 years, 1 month ago

And I forgot the biggie in my above post: a $15 trillion debt, which with all the presidents past and Obama combined, Obama owns a third of-------in just 3 years!!!

My god this disaster has to go!

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its_just_math 2 years, 1 month ago

As stated before, we'll continue to see these types of articles from the Obamamania corrupt media ad nauseum leading up to November. Worst housing market in the history of the US, national credit downgrade, longest sustained high (and under-reported) unemployemnt, gas at record prices and climbing, record welfare rolls, inflation, stagflation, anemic GDP, durable goods orders down almost 5%...... oh yeah, that's recovery baby!

Welcome to the Obama's New America!

Sickening.

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Gotland 2 years, 1 month ago

Take out a loan for 1,000,000 and feel better for a while.

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jhawkinsf 2 years, 1 month ago

If you're looking for facts to back up your belief that your cup is half empty, you will find those facts. If, However, you are looking for facts to back up your belief that your cup is half full, you will find those facts. Happy hunting everyone.

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FalseHopeNoChange 2 years, 1 month ago

The average Joe thinks that because his 401K is finally going up for the last few months that the economy must be in recovery, even though he can't afford to fill up his car anymore and dining out has become a memory.

Here's what a headline report had to say about today's improved consumer sentiment:

A gauge of U.S. consumer confidence rose to 70.8 in February, reaching the highest level in a year, with more optimism on jobs, the Conference Board reported Tuesday. "Consumers are considerably less pessimistic about current business and labor market conditions," said Lynn Franco, director of the Conference Board's consumer research center. "Despite further increases in gas prices, they are more optimistic about the short-term outlook." The January reading for confidence was revised to 61.5 from a prior estimate of 61.1. Generally when the economy is growing at a good clip, confidence readings are at least 90. Economists polled by MarketWatch had expected a reading of 64.5 for February on improving employment figures and higher stock prices. According to the U.S. Labor Department's most recent monthly employment report, total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 243,000 in January, while the unemployment rate fell to 8.3%.

http://www.marketwatch.com/story/consumer-confidence-gauge-rises-to-708-in-feb-2012-02-28-100160

Pay more attention to the caveat than the improved numbers - "Generally when the economy is growing at a good clip, confidence readings are at least 90". This is mostly jawboning and we have pointed out repeatedly that the government can use numbers to their advantage, such as lowering the unemployment rate by dropping millions of people off the labor rolls (even though they need and would appreciate a job), or using a 2% increase in inventory purchases to account for a 2.8% GDP where 2% of the GDP was the temporary inventory purchases.

(from a source)

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Michael LoBurgio 2 years, 1 month ago

Obama Stimulus Created As Many As 2 Million Jobs Recently

When it comes to keeping and creating employment, however, the package does appear to have done the job. A government report released this week suggests that the stimulus plan was responsible for the creation of 300,000 to 2 million additional jobs during the three months that ended December.

http://jobs.aol.com/articles/2012/02/24/up-to-2-million-jobs-in-4th-quarter-related-to-obama-stimulus-r/?a_dgi=aolshare_twitter&a_dgi=aolshare_twitter

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