Who is going to argue with the most recent Investor’s Business Daily Economic Optimism Index plunged 5.1 points in March to 42.2, the lowest number since December 2011.
Why? Rising gasoline prices, the doom and gloom pumped up by the administration and higher taxes took a toll on economic optimism.
In January, personal income fell 3.6 percent, the worst monthly decline in 20 years. Income fell as consumer prices climbed to new heights.
“Stock prices have wobbled as Italy’s inconclusive election revived concerns about the eurozone and global economy,” Investor’s Business Daily reported. “Meanwhile, President Obama has been campaigning across the country, warning that automatic spending cuts will have a disastrous impact on government services and the economy. The sequestration just took effect this month.”
It’s the worst decline since August 2011, when Standard & Poor’s downgraded the U.S. debt during that debt ceiling battle between the administration and the U.S. House of Representatives.
Has the president suffered in popularity with these declines? No.
“Democrats, however, showed a sharp drop in their economic optimism. Their index reading fell 9.4 points to 58.6, the lowest since the end of 2011. But the decline was deep and widespread, with independents, women and investors the most pessimistic since late 2011,” Investor’s Business Daily (IBD) stated.
“Americans across the board think that the economic outlook is grim,” said Raghavan Mayur, president of TIPP, a unit of TechnoMetrica Market Intelligence, IBD’s polling partner. “The big slide in our economic outlook subindex perhaps signals a turning point and an impending entry into a recession. This month nearly 60 percent believe that the economy is in a recession.”
That’s huge! With 59 percent of Americans claiming the U.S. economy is in recession, is there any light at the end of the tunnel?
Well, most consumers have not let their negative view of the U.S. economy dull their buying habits. Consumer spending in January was up 0.1 percent. Housing, auto sales and manufacturing overall have been picking up in the first quarter of 2013.