Read of the Day: 5 Economic Trends to be Thankful For

Here’s a nice change of pace – instead of persistently pointing out risks and potential trouble spots, here are 5 positive trends to be thankful for (via Washington Post):

Household debt is way down. For the quarter-century leading up to the great recession at the start of 2008, Americans accumulated ever-larger piles of debt, both in absolute terms and relative to the size of the economy.

The cost of servicing that debt is way, way down. Not only do American families owe less money than they did a few years ago, the price of maintaining that debt is much lower than it once was.

Electricity and natural gas prices are falling. Americans who cook or heat their homes with natural gas are seeing big savings, thanks to falling prices for the fuel: The retail price for consumers’ gas service piped into their homes is down 8.4 percent in the year ended in October.

Businesses aren’t firing people. The job market has been underwhelming in the economic recovery that officially began more than three years ago, and unemployment remains high at 7.9 percent.

Housing is dramatically more affordable. People often speak as if higher home prices are an unambiguously good thing, but that can be misleading. Sure, a retiree looking to sell off a large house and live in a small condo instead benefits from high home prices.

Read more here.

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Cullen Roche

Mr. Roche is the Founder of Orcam Financial Group, LLC. Orcam is a financial services firm offering research, private advisory, institutional consulting and educational services.

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Comments

  1. Seems there is a two edged sword to the household debt numbers. It is good if households have to repay less but given the nature of our “monetarist” system, driven by credit, that also means that less credit expansion means falling GDP unless we see an expansion of fiscal policy