In January I wrote a post about Captain Sullenberger safely landing his plane in the Hudson River. At the end of the post I said it was a sign that the economy had reached bottom and would soon improve, thanks largely to what I predicted would be an upsurge in consumer confidence. I think people needed exactly that sort of story to regain their faith in humanity.
As you can see from this historical chart of the S&P 500, my prediction might turn out to be about right, give or take a few months. And now the latest news is that consumer confidence rose by an “unexpectedly” high number.
My real estate broker tells me that the market for homes in our part of California is white hot. Every property is getting multiple offers, and real estate hasn’t been this affordable in a few decades. Prices aren’t rising, but they abruptly stopped falling.
Inventories have shrunk, which is generally a good sign for the future, and the public has an unusual level of confidence in an American president for a change.
Gas prices no longer seem so high, and the war in Iraq appears to be “won” in some fashion, depending on how you define that sort of thing.
We still have high unemployment, which will dog us for some time, and a crushing debt that seems impossible to fix but probably isn’t. But for now the media is tired of reporting bad news, partly because doing so is bad news for their own bottom lines, so expect to see some new media-driven economic bubbles forming by the end of the year.
Disclaimer: Don’t get your financial, legal, or medical advice from cartoonists.