Thursday, September 23, 2004


Bush's economy takes a wrong turn

Two Breaking-News bulletins came into my InBox from CBS MarketWatch today:

U.S. leading economic indicators decline 0.3%

"We doubt this signals an imminent further sharp downturn in growth but the data make uncomfortable viewing and are not consistent with the Fed's view that the economy is regaining traction. Where?" said Ian Shepherdson, chief U.S. economist at High Frequency Economics, in a note to clients.

Where indeed? Even the capitalists are beginning to murmur among themselves.

U.S. initial jobless claims rise to 350,000

The Labor Dept. press release attributes this to the hurricanes. Any port in a storm, as Grandma Fuse used to say.

A Labor Department spokesman said the increase in first-time claims in the week ending Sept. 18 was "mostly" due to the effects of hurricanes, including Ivan, which forced the closure of thousands of businesses from Florida to Texas last week.

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