A Little Spring in Our Steps
Yesterday is but today’s memory, and tomorrow is today’s dream. -- Kahlil Gibran, poet (1883-1931)
For six months or so, in the eye of the worst economic contraction of my lifetime, businesses and forecasters have been declaring the recession over. Regardless of layoffs and spending freezes, experts and non-experts alike stated with great clarity that all was well. And I suppose this is human nature—when things go too far south, at some point it is best to take the attitude that if I believe it, it will become truth.
At long last, this week we heard from the only opinion that matters on this topic. Robert Hall, head economist at the National Bureau of Economic Research’s Business Cycle Dating Committee, the guy charged with looking at all of the data that is coming in, comparing statistics and historical data, spoke with Bloomberg. “I personally put lots of emphasis on employment,” he said. When asked whether he thought the economic downturn had ended, he responded, “I would say ‘pretty clear’ is a good description.”