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Old 06-24-2009, 04:52 AM
 
Location: Central CT, sometimes NH.
3,744 posts, read 5,565,692 times
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Exactly what event, economic data, confidence statements, evidence will it take for the average American who is gainfully employeed and not in imminent danger of losing his/her job to resume normal activity and spark economic growth?
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Old 06-24-2009, 06:56 AM
 
28,461 posts, read 76,220,082 times
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There is no "magic switch" that suddenly flips. If you have any memory at all you may recall that in the 4thQ of 07 or earlier there were MANY people cranking the sirens of doom. While the powers of Washington and the bankers did their best to try and convince people that all was well the events that unfolded nearer to the general elections of 08 really turned opinion.

When unemployment numbers go down and stay there for several months and house prices stop falling for several months that will be a "looking back" way of saying the corner has been turned BUT due to lag the data can be out of sync with new developments, especially negative forces from over seas, so I would NOT count on just those things driving Americans back to their spend spend spend ways...
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Old 06-24-2009, 07:16 AM
 
Location: Pennsylvania
5,726 posts, read 10,567,174 times
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You'd have to define an 'average' American. Other than selling a vacation home for reasons that had little to do with the economy, I haven't really changed anything about how I live, but then I've never been one to spend beyond, or even close to, my means - keep a car for ten years, no fancy TV, dine out maybe three times a month, older computer, pay off credit balances every month, etc. I don't know if I'd be considered average though - the articles you read would suggest not, but what I see in day-to-day life suggests yes.
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Old 06-24-2009, 07:27 AM
 
22,770 posts, read 27,788,224 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lincolnian View Post
Exactly what event, economic data, confidence statements, evidence will it take for the average American who is gainfully employeed and not in imminent danger of losing his/her job to resume normal activity and spark economic growth?
in my opinion -

Significant, sustained appreciation of investments (houses, stocks)
and/or an increase in income.

Lower unemployment rate and GDP growth wouldn't hurt, either.
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Old 06-24-2009, 07:31 AM
NCN
 
Location: NC/SC Border Patrol
21,142 posts, read 23,077,632 times
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We have never skipped a beat here. I am looking for a car and when I find one that I want at a price I am willing to pay, I will buy it. The problem is the high salaries of the car companies are so high, they have priced themselves out of the market.
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Old 06-24-2009, 07:57 AM
 
13,685 posts, read 23,899,631 times
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I think most people have already resumed normal spending.
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Old 06-24-2009, 08:00 AM
 
Location: Wouldn't you like to know?
9,114 posts, read 16,237,663 times
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None of you guys have mentioned the possibility of inflation.

Wait till that rears its ugly head.
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Old 06-24-2009, 09:08 AM
 
Location: western East Roman Empire
8,061 posts, read 11,845,298 times
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Normal in human history is downtrodden with broken teeth.

The consumption-driven industrial society is historically too short-lived to be considered normal. If it lasts another century or two it may achieve that distinction.

The outlook for the average American going forward is closer to the average Chinese or Brazilian in about ten years from now than it is to the average American ten years ago or sixty years ago.

Unless we discover a magic formula for energy to replace fossil fuels, or achieve a nano-technology revolution or similar, the pace of consumption in the 1990s/early 2000s is unsustainable, especially now that the playing field is global and the average American is increasingly an insignificant minority in left field with a hockey stick.

To put it another way, the average American must pursue a productive activity that competitively adds value to the global economy, and that much better if it adds value to the local and national economies as well. That would be a good outcome for "normal".

But don't expect that outcome given the quality of current leadership.

Good luck!

Last edited by bale002; 06-24-2009 at 09:18 AM..
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Old 06-24-2009, 09:34 AM
 
Location: Virginia Beach, VA
5,517 posts, read 9,409,301 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lincolnian View Post
Exactly what event, economic data, confidence statements, evidence will it take for the average American who is gainfully employeed and not in imminent danger of losing his/her job to resume normal activity and spark economic growth?

The fact that a majority of Americans are in imminent danger, or perceived imminent danger of losing their jobs, is the problem here. Im not sure that is ever going to go away. I think this whole prolonged recession has changed Americans perception about job security and loyalty forever.
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Old 06-24-2009, 10:40 AM
 
89 posts, read 241,513 times
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Unless you have lost your job, nothing at all has changed except the price of your house. If you are not planning on moving and have your job, zero has changed. The economy could be booming a few years from now, but if you lose your job then, things are horrible for you. 24 hour news cycles and the internet have made this downfall 1000 times worse in the eyes of the general public.

This is my take. We have all been spoiled beyond belief. Even in this recession. It used to be the uppidy uppidy who have the Flat Screen TV's, surround sound system, etc. Now probably half of middle America has one in their home. It is more affordable now to have luxury items(to a certain degree).

Just my opinion, but if you live within your means and have your job, nothing has changed. Now, if you got a bigger house than needed, bought a boat or vacation property, expensive car, etc. don't blame the economy, blame you!
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