Context…on the Economy, Some Context, Please

By February 7, 2008Economy

This was the lead of a Wall Street Journal e-mail alert: “Retailers reported weak January sales figures, further fanning fears about the U.S. economy.” (Full story here.)

The news about the economy isn’t ALL bad, you know. Yet when the latest positive economic report comes out — say the recent data about durable goods — you get takes like this Bloomberg paragraph: “Feb. 4 (Bloomberg) — Orders to U.S. factories rose in December by the most in five months, indicating business spending on new equipment is growing even as hiring falters.”

Perfectly reasonable. Still, it seems we never see stories that start like this: “Orders to U.S. factories rose in December, easing fears about the U.S. economy.”

Economic fears are always being fanned, rarely dampened. Seems…inconsistent.

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