Thursday, May 11, 2006

US Economy gathers steam

Those irrepressible capitalists over at the Wall Street Journal are bullish on the economy and the ability of our economy to weather rising energy costs.

E.S. Browning writes:
What helped drive stocks higher in the late 1990s was the rise of the Internet and information technology. They combined to boost labor productivity and to spark the market's love affair with technology companies such as Cisco Systems Inc. and Dell Inc.

Today, the stock market is benefiting from something broader: consumer demand at home and powerful economic growth abroad.

A series of developments that skeptics thought would kill the bull market -- resurgent inflation, rising labor costs, falling consumer spending, a collapsing housing market -- haven't materialized. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke gave investors a boost in late April when he told Congress that surging energy prices have so far failed to bleed into other prices.|WSJ (Sub'n Req'd)|
I admit to being one of those skeptics. I'm glad the economy is holding up. Hopefully this will give people the opportunity to convert to more energy efficient resources before it's too late. Anecdotally, I am seeing evidence of this. Recently one of my co-workers went to look at gas-sipping Toyota compacts and was told there was a waiting list for these cars in the Twin Cities metro area. Then I asked a building inspector about tankless water heaters and he told me I was the fifth person to ask him about them this month. And it's early in the month! (But he didn't know much about them, actually...)

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