Wednesday, June 13, 2012

USA Consumer Sentiment at 4-Year High, But Only 29% Report Improved Finances

USA Consumer Sentiment: Thomson Reuters / University of Michigan

Americans are becoming downright giddy, compared to sentiment lows in recent years. From a longer-term perspective, we are neither very optimistic nor very negative these days, but the Index of Consumer Sentiment reached a 4-year high in May. Consumer sentiment has decisively rebounded from the depths of the Great Recession. High gasoline and food prices stifle and remind consumers everyday their disposable income is slipping away, but at least we all have the latest Android or iPhone! We can text and surf away unto oblivion. 29% of households report their finances had improved, the same as a year ago, described as "dismal" by Reuters.

Some of the good is technology is changing life for the better, American spirit and entrepreneurship perpetually rises up through the government disincentives, the economy is muddling along with at least some jobs growth, the spring weather is nice, consumer sentiment has increased 9 consecutive months to a 4-year high, and maybe nothing really bad will happen for at least awhile.

Some of the bad is technology is changing our life for the worse, just 1 in 4 households anticipate an improved financial situation during the year ahead, 1 in 7 citizens are on food stamps, 50% of 2012 college graduates are unemployed or underemployed, full employment is far from being restored, the government encroachment in and control of our lives continues unabated, the national debt rises ever higher towards a debt bomb, a possible "fiscal cliff" could occur later this year, and the Wall Street Banksters continue runninig amok.

Surely the EU sovereign debt crisis and the mess those silly Europeans created is not a preview of things to come here in the Land of the Free? Japan won't be the next to succumb to overwhelming debt, will they? Good Lord, us Americans are not that goofy to run up a huge debt we can't pay and be forced into fiscal austerity hell, are we?

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