Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Progress Or Deception

According to a report from NPR yesterday,
The word late yesterday from MasterCard Advisors' SpendingPulse that consumers spent 5.5 percent more this holiday season than in 2009 is perhaps one of the best economic indicators we've had in months...
Of course, the mainstream media (I'm sure the federal government too) has chosen to interpret this data in a particular way. It could very well mean that America is turning the corner on the current economic slump. Since consumer spending fuels our economy, it could very well mean brighter prospects for 2011 and beyond.

However, it could also very well mean nothing of the sort. The first thing I note is that the information is coming from a credit card company. If people are buying things on credit, it probably means they don't have the disposable cash available to make those same purchases. So, they are buying things now in the hope that things will turn around and they can pay off the balance later.

Some people, in fact, may be hurting so bad that they don't expect they will be able to pay off the balance. They simply wanted one last hurrah before they go under completely.

With the official unemployment rate still hovering around 10.0%, the housing industry still slumping, very little consumer lending going on and prices continuing to creep up, it is hard to believe that consumer confidence is rebounding. Consequently, the second scenario -- not the first -- seems like the more realistic assessment.

But don't expect to hear such a notion from the lips of the mainstream media or our elected officials!! They jointly want everyone to believe that everything is a-ok.

Spend. Spend. Spend...even if ya don't have the money!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Comments are unmoderated, so you can write whatever you want.