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View Poll Results: How do you think the economy is doing?
It's great and it's improving every day 15 16.85%
it's not too good but the outlook is positive 28 31.46%
It stinks with no end in sight 46 51.69%
Voters: 89. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 02-15-2014, 10:45 AM
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Seems okay to me. In some ways it's better than it's been for decades simply because it doesn't seem like people are too eager to get back in the bubble and burst mode of operation. Too many people got burned too hard last time around. I'd rather have slower growth that is sound and sustainable than wild growth fueled by massive consumer debt and rampant speculation, which always comes crashing down in the end.
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Old 02-15-2014, 11:56 AM
 
Location: moved
13,649 posts, read 9,708,585 times
Reputation: 23480
My personal economy is tied almost in lockstep with the stock market; mainly the US market, but to some extent worldwide. I don’t consider myself to be an expert investor, either in terms of tactics, market-analysis or general wisdom. However, I avoided the most abject stupidities, and have managed to do OK.

March 2009 was a staggering low-point for me, as it was for the stock market. In the ensuing years, I have suffered profound personal setbacks, but financially am doing substantially better, as is the stock market. This is no proof that we’re in a solid secular bull-market or that we have 20 years of strong profits ahead of us. Nobody knows. But from my vantage point, gas prices, inflation, tight credit, poor job market and so forth, are merely anecdotal vignettes. It’s like watching the local news and hearing of multi-car collision on the local highway. Doubtless this is a personal tragedy for those involved. I don’t mean to trivialize their loss. But I’m not on that highway. I don’t see the victims, and have not even been inconvenienced by the ensuing traffic jam. To me, that multi-car collision is an abstraction; something over which perhaps to offer condolences and to pause in contemplation that it could have been me. But otherwise, it does not impact my life.

Likewise, for people who have lost their jobs after 30 years of stable employment with a firm where they felt strong rapport between employee and employer, this economy has been a grievous source of loss – both of money, and of self-confidence. It is stupid to judge those people as “losers” who failed to adapt with the times. I recognize that such casualties of modern economic dislocation are many. But it also seems to me that just as reporting on the nightly news the smooth flow of traffic and the lack of highway accidents is not of interest, drawing no audience and making no point, likewise, the reporting of steady progress in the economy is not newsworthy.

My overall impression is that the economy is improving; not universally, and not fast enough. But it definitely is improving. And the huge increase in the stock market, 2009-present, is not some anomaly or gross misallocation. It’s real and it’s meaningful.
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Old 02-15-2014, 12:33 PM
 
79 posts, read 139,736 times
Reputation: 66
Well, from the informal poll here it seems sentiment is NEGATIVE, which is contrary to what the media has been spinning these days that consumer sentiment is mostly positive.
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Old 02-15-2014, 01:16 PM
 
106,654 posts, read 108,790,719 times
Reputation: 80146
I don't see that all. 22 out of 26 said they are feeling things are looking more positive on the horizon or things are better.

While things are not great they certainly are a whole lot less bad.

Why not have that as a voting option? Only options i see are great or still sucks

Last edited by mathjak107; 02-15-2014 at 01:20 PM.. Reason: reat the
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Old 02-15-2014, 01:24 PM
 
Location: Metro Detroit, Michigan
29,818 posts, read 24,898,335 times
Reputation: 28512
I feel that things are obviously better than they were around 2009, but that's not saying much. OTOH, I'm a young blue collar worker, and really have not felt much distress. Matter of fact, I'm in the process of purchasing my first home, so I do feel some confidence in this market. The fundamentals haven't changed much, but US production is booming, and people with marketable skills are having a much better time finding work. I'm not sure what happen to everyone else, but I can't sit and worry about everyone else. When it comes to personal finance, you have to look out for number 1.

What I worry more about is the turbulence up ahead. We will experience recessions again. What happens when all the folks barely hanging on, can't hold on any longer? Would a recession quickly snowball into a depression? Well, it's hard to say. We have a government that is very generous with other people's money. As much as I grumble about it, maybe that should offer some confidence?
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Old 02-15-2014, 02:04 PM
 
Location: Myrtle Creek, Oregon
15,293 posts, read 17,678,616 times
Reputation: 25236
Quote:
Originally Posted by speeddev1l View Post
Talked to a small business owner, he owns a motorcycle shop, and he was saying business is absolutely in the pits and the economy doing good is nothing but ridiculous nonsense. People are not confident to spend money.

Your thoughts?
It's winter. The motorcycle business is always in the pits in the winter, because nobody is riding. Go talk to the guy who sells generators and snow blowers to find out how the economy is doing.
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Old 02-15-2014, 02:07 PM
 
106,654 posts, read 108,790,719 times
Reputation: 80146
we do a whole bunch of different things in the company i work for. we grew from a 27 million dollar company to a 60 million dollar company in 4 states in one year.

we are electrical supply wholesalers, factory automation suppliers, builders and designers, we build water and sewage pumps, we own a plumbing supply company , motor and pump repair facility and plumbing contractor company, and are involved in commercial led lighting projects. we also bought an energy managment company a few months ago..

american manufacturing has been soaring again as labor costs in the emerging market countires has soared in dollar terms because of inflation.

i got a 4 million dollar order to build control panels for a japanese manufacturer who makes plastic extruders.. they too have seen big jumps in factory orders.

i have had my best earning years the last few years in my 40 year career.

so yes there are areas that are doing very well now.

Last edited by mathjak107; 02-15-2014 at 02:29 PM..
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Old 02-15-2014, 02:16 PM
 
79 posts, read 139,736 times
Reputation: 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Larry Caldwell View Post
It's winter. The motorcycle business is always in the pits in the winter, because nobody is riding. Go talk to the guy who sells generators and snow blowers to find out how the economy is doing.
Again, I am in Southern California, we don't have "winter" here. Yesterday it was 78F and sunny, today it's 80F and sunny, tommorow it's going to be 77F and sunny... etc. etc. Southern California has two seasons - sunny in winter and even sunnier in summer LOL!

People ride all year long, tomorrow I am taking both bikes out for a long ride because the weather has been so perfect. Infact I am looking out from my window and can't believe how awesome it is outside for a nice walk with just a t-shirt while the rest of the US is freezing over! Yes, I am infact rubbing it in but why shouldn't I? We folks here pay through our noses and asses and everything else to live here because the cost of living is astronomical...may as well brag about the weather
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Old 02-15-2014, 05:55 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles area
14,016 posts, read 20,902,793 times
Reputation: 32530
Quote:
Originally Posted by speeddev1l View Post
Well, from the informal poll here it seems sentiment is NEGATIVE, which is contrary to what the media has been spinning these days that consumer sentiment is mostly positive.
As I type this response your informal poll has 53 voters, hardly a representative sample of anything at all. Have you asked yourself what self-selection factors go into the people who read and post in this particular forum (Economics) in this particular board (City-Data)? Has it occurred to you that people who want to whine and vent about their frustrations are more likely to post than people who are satisfied?

When the media reports a poll about consumer confidence (or any other broad-based opinion poll for that matter), then the polling organization has made some scientifically based efforts to collect a random sample. This thread cannot be considered a random sample; one of the components of a random sample would be a large enough sample, and 53 is not large enough.
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Old 02-15-2014, 06:42 PM
 
6,326 posts, read 6,588,284 times
Reputation: 7457
My barometer is construction. New warehouses and distributions centers are popping up in many places (even though little older ones sit empty down a block, go figure), fast food joints, truck stops and gas stations, these are constantly built, no visible slow down. New housing construction and remodeling picked up even in rural areas. Hospitals, so many new hospitals have been built in the past 5 years. There are some serious super profits in the medical biz to justify that building extravaganza. Concentrated animal feeding operations, especially pig feeding operations mushroomed in the past years. New high voltage electrical lines, some new pipelines and oil terminals were built even in the midst of recession. New roads and road widening are fairly common (as potholes in the Midwest). Manufacturing facilities not so much, very little actually.

In short it seems that corporate America foresees that American economy will be linked to the Asian and Mexican sweatshops for the foreseeable future. We'll be buying more plastic junk, more industrial meats, more fast food. We'll be driving on the improved roads to the nearest McD or shopping centers or to our jobs in the distribution centers. Those forced into trucking biz will have more choices of truck stops (owned by only 3 major players remaining in business). Sweatshop goods will be delivered promptly by trucks from East cost and West cost ports or Laredo, Texas and a few other points on Mexico border. No sizable investments in the railroad network despite $4/gal of diesel. Those with funds and good insurance plans have wide selection of new hospitals to choose from. That's the future of American economy in a nutshell.
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