Gallup's Economic Confidence Index dropped 14 points since the government shutdown, the lowest is has been since December 2011.
For starters there is no recovery. Secondly, there is every reason for eurozone exports to slump; there is no reason to believe hiring will pick up, and no reason for imports or internal demand to pick up in the absence of hiring.
Avik Roy from the Manhattan Institute weighs in on the fiscal cliff.
They walk where no mortals dare. They face challenges that melt the resolve of ordinary people. They fearlessly stride the pathways of the world, towering over the feeble masses. Commoners worship them as gods, without whom their lives would dissipate into madness and chaos. Who are these giants that rule the world and whose wisdom is essential to our daily existence? They are economists.
It's difficult to be a good economist and simultaneously be perceived as compassionate. To be a good economist, one has to deal with reality. To appear compassionate, often one has to avoid unpleasant questions, use "caring" terminology and view reality as optional.
By applying the seasonal adjustments the BLS uses for April it suggests the BLS may report an uptick in the unemployment rate from 8.2% to 8.5%.
Here's one for the Guinness World Records people: Two New York City taxi medallions were sold last month for $1 million apiece. That's the highest price ever paid for the right to operate a car as a taxicab in The City That Never Sleeps. It's also an expensive lesson in the harm caused to consumers and would-be entrepreneurs by overregulation and the strangling of competition.