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The Washington Post today reported

The Institute for Supply Management reported Tuesday that manufacturing expanded in August for the first time since January 2008. The institute’s index of business activity rose to 52.9, from 48.9. Any number below 50 signals a contraction.

[…] Separate reports showed that construction spending on residential real estate rose 4.5 percent and that pending home sales increased for the sixth consecutive month, supporting other recent indications that the decline in the housing market is leveling off.

Taken together, the reports show that two of the hardest-hit sectors have, at the very least, ceased to be a drag on growth. The new indicators, in fact, suggest that manufacturing and housing could drive the incipient recovery, accounting for an unusually large share of growth and stimulating a rebound in more sluggish areas such as consumer spending.

“The key we’re looking for is consistency,” said Bernard Baumohl, chief global economist at the Economic Outlook Group. “The more we see of these types of indicators all sending the same message, the more confident we are that the worst is over and the economy is on track to recover.”

Jobs recovery still remains a few months in the future, but businesses are signaling their desire to begin hiring in the coming months as business volume picks up. Surveyed businesses report they expect to begin hiring – expanding their staff – in the next few months.

So the worst is over…but we still have major endemic problems to solve which cripple our national competitiveness. If anti-competitive costs, such as the increasing costs of health care, are not solved, US businesses will never be able to compete, domestically or internationally, with companies that do not have to account with those costs in their prices.


One Response

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  1. Hmm… I don’t think I can agree with you on that but hey, very interesting thought you got there, makes a lot of sense.

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    December 2, 2010 at 10:52 PM

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