» We’ve been really worried about the whole debt-ceiling mess for the past few days, but it really says something about the economy when the tooth fairy isn’t even giving as much for kids’ pearly whites. Perhaps, like Glenn Beck, she’s chosen to invest in gold instead of teeth. We hear gold’s doing pretty well nowadays.
» The worst result since July 2009: To explain what you’re looking at, this number represents manufacturing activity in July. Any number above 50 percent is growth. Good right? Well, in this case, not really, because the previous month was 55.3 percent. And earlier this year, it was above 60 percent for a few solid months. This number is another sign that the economy is starting to slow down again. This result was so bad that it deflated optimism about the debt deal on the stock market this morning.
» One word — anemic. On top of all this drama, the rates for GDP growth in the first quarter was projected down to an even lower 0.4 percent growth. While this does not bode well for our recovery, it doesn’t mean we’ll necessarily have a double-dip. It just increases the chances of one.
boehner’s bill falls short: After a chaotic day of vote-whipping, vote-delaying, and vote-switching, John Boehner has decided to postpone the vote on his debt ceiling bill. Despite multiple assurances that it would be brought to a vote before tomorrow, at the end of the day, Boehner didn’t have enough votes to ensure the bill’s passage (and he wasn’t going to embarrass himself by introducing a bill that was sure to fail). In an unusual alignment, conservative Tea Partiers and House Democrats all pledged to vote against the bill, albiet for different reasons. While the legislation has virtually no chance of passing the Democratic-controlled Senate, Boehner’s ability to shepherd it through the House is seen by many as the first real test of his leadership abilities. If he doesn’t eventually pass it, there’s a good chance he’ll (eventually) be deposed as Speaker. But it’s not over yet—sources say Republicans plan to tweak the bill a bit, and re-introduce it tomorrow. source
» That is a stark difference. In their latest study, Pew compared the net wealth of families in various racial groups and found that blacks and Latinos in particular did very poorly compared to whites. (Asians, on the other hand, were somewhat within shouting distance. EDIT: Please see explanation.) This is a historic trend which has lasted decades, but has become all the more apparent with the Great Recession. “The bursting of the housing market bubble in 2006 and the recession that followed from late 2007 to mid-2009 took a far greater toll on the wealth of minorities than whites,” Pew writes in its study. While net wealth among whites fell roughly 16 percent, blacks families lost about 53 percent, and Latino families lost the most — losing 66 percent of their wealth on average.
» Why this stinks for Obama: Early on in his administration, he said it wouldn’t go higher than 8.2%. While unemployment declined for a little while, it’s been steadily going up again. The Obama administration is trying to downplay the issue, but it’s proving difficult, and could prove his major flaw in the upcoming election. It’s an easy target for GOP candidates. Instead of talking about how he’s helped turn the economy around, Obama is going to have to fight back by saying how the Republicans will make it worse, and let’s face it: That doesn’t sound like such a great defense.
Almost nobody’s talking about one of the central points that everyone who has analyzed this situation makes – including the bipartisan Simpson-Bowles commission – which [is] you shouldn’t do any of this until the economy is clearly recovering.Bill Clinton • Discussing the deficit-reduction fight going on in Washington, with dealing over the debt limit functioning as a negotiating tool for the GOP to push for spending cuts. This is an angle that’s been taken by many mainstream economists (though obviously, the world of economics can be as contentious as anywhere else), namely that the ability to put off paying down the deficit for a while, though it may not jive with the popular notion of fiscal responsibility, is a valuable tactic to avoid straining the economic recovery. To use an overly simplistic metaphor, if we were to gain thirty pounds over the course of a year, working out twelve hours every day wouldn’t be a healthful way to slim back down. It takes a while to gain the weight, so it’s only natural and measured that it’ll take a while to safely cast it off again. source (via • follow)
» This isn’t good. The unemployment rate of Anacostia, a district in Southeast DC east of the river mostly populated by blacks? Nearly 20 percent. DC is merely just a flash point for a much-larger trend. All over the United States, blacks are twice as likely to be unemployed as whites. What’s worse is there’s no real explanation for it — other than the obvious one.
» That’s the highest level ever. While the poll question (from a CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll) had a slight majority — 51 percent — saying we probably won’t have one, a possible double-dip recession has many folks a little concerned. Obama promises that’s not going to happen. He better hope he’s right — 51 percent of people also said that the economy is extremely important in determining who they’ll vote for.