Friday, August 14, 2009

Claim that Economy Has Recovered “Is Like Somebody Borrowing Money from Their Uncle and Then Celebrating that Their Income Has Gone Up”

John Hussman – PhD economist and former professor of economics and international finance at the University of Michigan – has a great quote:
If you look carefully at the economic data that shows improvement, and correct for the impact of government outlays, it is difficult to find anything but continued deterioration in private demand and investment. What we do see is a government that has run what is now a trillion dollar deficit year-to-date, representing some 7% of GDP.
That sort of tab will undoubtedly buy some amount of Cool-Aid, but it has been something of a disappointment to watch how eagerly investors have guzzled it down. It is not at all clear that short-term, deficit-financed improvement necessarily implies sustained growth in the context of a deleveraging cycle. This is like somebody borrowing money from their Uncle and then celebrating that their income has gone up .