Everything is awesome... or terrible - depending on when you were asked. The Conference Board's consumer confidence surged to its highest since October 2015 at 98.1 (beating expectations of 96.5). However, Gallup shows economic confidence crashing back from a post-State of the Union bounce to its lowest since November 2015. Take your pick...
Trump’s meteoric rise to the top of the polls represents something of a coup for a system that has for years been dominated by an entrenched political aristocracy. While we know that Trump has managed to secure an almost religious following in part by whipping voters into a veritable frenzy, we do not yet know what, specifically, voters see in brazen billionaire beyond the rather amorphous “Make America Great Again” campaign slogan. Here to shed some light on the subject is Gallup.
More people in the United States than ever are breaking away from the political duopoly by refusing to self-identify as either Democrat or Republican - and they now effectively comprise the true silent majority: Independents.
Three weeks out from the Iowa caucuses, and clarity emerges. Hillary Clinton, the likely Democratic nominee, is in trouble. But if a cloud is forming over the Clinton campaign, the sun continues to shine on The Donald. What does the surge for socialist Sanders and the Republican base’s backing of the outsiders Trump and Cruz and collective recoil from the Republican establishment candidates tell us? As Dylan sang, "The times they are a changing."
Love guns or hate guns, one thing is becoming perfectly clear. The American public’s perception of guns and the NRA is moving in the exact opposite direction of Barack Obama’s message and agenda.
What explains America's revulsion with the existing system? The answer comes from the latest Gallup article: "Explaining Trump: Widespread Government Corruption" in which it finds that once the silent majority of the population can identify the object of their distrust and anger - in this case Congress and the political status quo - and once they can subsequently identify an object that represents its opposite, the latter object's distance to the Oval Office becomes considerably shorter.
Many of us are wishing to be bold, and maybe even revolutionary. But we are far too comfortable, and also too afraid.
"In the same Gallup survey that listed 'dissatisfaction with government' as the top concern for each of the past two years, 'guns/Gun control' was considered 'the most important problem' by 2 percent of respondents, about the same who listed “lack of respect for each other” and pollution.'
- China stocks tank, triggers circuit breaker (Reuters)
- Stocks Slump Across Europe and Asia Following Shanghai's 7% Crash (BBG)
- China Halts Stock Trading After 7% Rout Triggers Circuit Breaker (BBG)
- Iran says Riyadh thrives on tension after relations cut (Reuters)
- Saudis and Bahrain Face Off With Iran in Worst Clash Since 1980s (BBG)
- Syrian rebel group backs Saudi move to cut ties with Iran (Reuters)
Our quarterly survey of “Off the Grid” economic indicators finds that the U.S. economy is still growing, but the pace seems to be slowing from Q3 2015.
This is the highest percentage of Americans to mention terrorism in a decade... So are the terrorists winning? Or the fearmongers?
And if American Entrepreneurism is in a death spiral, then so too is the U.S. economy and the state that lives off the surplus generated by American Entrepreneurism.
So how do you grow household wealth by $18 trillion in the face of these dismal real world trends? In a word, with a printing press. But what happened today is that Draghi showed he is out of tricks and Yellen confessed she is out of excuses. Yes, this sucker is going down. And this time all the misguided economics professors turned central bankers in the world will be powerless to reverse the plunge.