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“The US economy grew a surprisingly strong 3.2% in this year’s first quarter, according to the latest real GDP estimate from the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA). This was about a percentage point more than expected by the consensus of economists who track this number. While a surprise, global investors didn’t seem to care. Stock prices and interest rates hardly budged on the data. Why?
The main message in the first-quarter gain is that worries about an imminent recession, widespread just a few weeks ago, were overdone. The economic expansion that followed the Great Recession remains in place and is on track to celebrate its 10th birthday in June. A month after that, it could become the longest expansion in US economic history. The previous record holder, the 1990s expansion, was fueled by business adoption of the internet — Amazon opened for business as an online bookseller in July 1994.
The current expansion is often thought of as weaker than those of the past, but this is largely why it has gone on for so long. Booms usually end because of runaway inflation, stock market and housing bubbles, or over-borrowing and mountains of debt. The 1990s expansion ended with the bursting internet stock market bubble. Remember Pets.com?”
JJ Editor's Daily Picks
"With many other countries already studying the Asian playbook, the United States and Europe could benefit from doing the same."
"Trump's cursing is one of the most straightforward parts of his appeal... Trump is not the only politician whose profanity has stood him in good stead."
"‘If we get all of this because Netanyahu wants to make Trump happy, that’s fine with us,’ says local council rep in Golan Heights as plans ramp up for ‘new’ neighborhood honoring U.S. president..."
"...there is something worth paying attention to in this latest petition from fans keen to have a creative work made the way that they want it. The comments on the petition are instructive."
"The sunny job numbers and steady growth hide the fact that most people think the economy works only for people in power."
"Like many other Americans, I now wear AirPods all day at my desk to combat the awful tyranny of the open office. Since they don’t cancel noise, they provide me with writing music..."
"The logic of attributing mental states to nonhuman animals is complicated. We cannot use deductive inference, because there are no general rules..."
"As the canon of English literature slowly, gradually opens itself up to books by women and authors of color, Modern Library and Penguin Classics have just launched two new series..."
"Egalitarian couples assume their progressive ideology will carry the day. Sociologists know that it doesn’t.... sharing child care is associated with valuing gender equality..."
"Business Booms for Sephardic Food: Women are leading the way as small businesses bring traditional recipes to the commercial marketplace..."
"With most animal populations, the niches that encase the populations are of constant size. Animal societies growing in a given niche have dynamics neatly fitted by equations with a constant limit or ceiling."
"Now some 200,000 Jews live in Germany, a nation of 82 million people, and many are increasingly fearful.... 85 percent of respondents in Germany characterized anti-Semitism as a “very big” or “fairly big” problem..."