2 out of 3 expect recession
What's that we keep hearing about consumer sentiment remaining robust? That the stalwart U.S. consumer will keep the economy fired up?
All that "expert" opinion doesn't seem to square with what ordinary folk believe:
Almost two-thirds of Americans say a recession is likely in the next year and a majority believes the economy is already faltering, according to a Bloomberg/Los Angeles Times survey.
By 65 percent to 29 percent, Americans say they expect a recession, the poll found. Fifty-one percent say the economy is doing poorly, compared with 46 percent who say it is doing well, the gloomiest view since February 2003.
The negative sentiment on the economy contrasts with a June poll in which 57 percent of respondents said it was doing well.
This jibes with my own experience of people's sentiment about the housing mess. It wasn't till this summer that folks who weren't trying to sell a home, and who weren't struggling to keep up payments, really started to realize what a dire situation had developed for those who were.
I imagine numbers like these make a Fed rate cut at the end of this month more likely. Since the Fed governors pay a lot of attention to "inflationary expectations" when making their decisions (since their policies are inherently inflationary, and it's merely a matter of how effectively they bamboozle the booboisie), it only makes sense that they'd look at poll data like this and conclude that "recessionary expectations" are such that they can cut, cut, cut, and the value of the dollar be damned.
The poll also has some very high disapproval numbers for both the president and Congress. Combined with the economic gloominess, things are starting to feel a little like the mid to late 70s again. Only this time the land war in Asia that's burning such a big hole in the federal budget isn't anywhere near over.