Current real-time consumer tracking data is showing contraction even as the latest GDP release indicates nearly 6% growth. The GDP lags by some 17 weeks both because it measures production activities 'downstream' from consumers and because the traditional data requires months to collect and adjust.
From our perspective on the demand side of the economy, a contraction is already here, having started officially in the middle of January. The only question now is whether the 2010 contraction will revisit 2006 or 2008?
This coincides with my thinking that there will be a second dip to the recession, because of the slow M2 growth. Davis says this "second dip" is milder than the 2008 downturn ( I guess you can real only blow up the housing market once), but on a gut basis (not his numbers) he thinks it will be more prolonged.
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