Friday, November 21, 2014

Embracing lowered expectations. Said in the most sarcastic way.

I think we all are waiting with baited breath to see what the lower oil price does for the economy. Some think this will cause the economy to go gangbusters. Some like me think there are too many other factors going on for it to make much difference. But I still hope I am wrong. I want the economy to get better.

Sadly when I read stuff like the following - I think I am closer to right than wrong. It started out with an article from MarketWatch talking about the economy getting a boost from falling oil prices. Because this is what I really want to happen. I'm hopeful at this point. Then he spits out this:

"The good news is that lower oil prices are creating lower gasoline prices at the pump. This puts more discretionary-spending money into the hands of consumers. The latest retail sales figures reflected a nice jump in retail sales in October vs. September. Look at the nice jump in the retail sector recently, as seen through the Market Vectors Retail ETF RTH, +0.41%"

Now I didn't pay attention to the retail numbers that much, but if it had experienced "a nice jump" I think I would have noticed it. 

So I run over to the link Marketwatch provided me where I found this headline.  Retail sales up 0.3% in October, versus expectations for 0.2% gain.

"U.S. retailers reported strong sales in October, a sign American consumers were spending with more gusto and could help keep the economy growing at a brisk pace."

The article goes on to say...

"Retail sales account for about one-third of consumer spending, and overall they rose 0.3 percent, held back by a 1.5 percent drop in receipts at gasoline retailers. Economists polled by Reuters had expected a 0.2 percent gain."

These people have to be effing joking me. Those numbers are only slightly above stall speed. Without the gas bump, likely they would all be negative. Whatever,

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