April, as it turns out, was a darn good month for the economy. Consumer spending rose for the seventh straight month, industrial production was up and businesses added 290,000 jobs, the largest monthly increase in four years.
Was April a harbinger of good times?
I say, yes, the economy is headed in the right direction. Full recovery is a long way off, but I feel significantly better about the economy today than I did a year ago.
The stimulus plan is working.
Other reasonably intelligent folk disagree.
One of those would be my lunchmate yesterday. He leans right and says the ever-growing federal budget dooms any recovery effort. Our conversation was off-the-record, so I can’t identify him, but he’s been around the business and political scene for many years and I respect his opinion. I disgree with him often, but he is a good debater.
Here’s more perspective on the economy
American Action Forum: Greece, Europe and Financial Markets
The Curious Capitalist: Reading the Jobs Report Tea Leaves
Calculated Risk: Industrial Production, Capacity Utilization increase in April