While reading industry news today, I stumbled upon two articles with mirror-image titles. One reads, Even without U.S. "cliff," world economy teeters
. The other: The global economy isn’t falling apart. The U.S. might be.
The first article, in a nutshell, claims that “among the rich nations,” the United States is not at the bottom of the barrel. More data will come in during the next week in regards to our fourth quarter, but RBC Capital Markets economist Tom Porcelli predicts that the fourth quarter U.S. GDP growth will fall from 1 percent to 0.2 percent. The article claims that, compared to the struggling economies of Greece, Japan, Brazil, Spain, and Canada — with the exception of China’s booming factory industry — the U.S. “outlook remains the least troublesome.”
To summarize the second article, according to very recent data, most of the aforementioned economies are inching their way upwards from what one might call a “run-of-the-mill recession," not an economic collapse. The Institute for Supply Management’s purchasing managers’ index for the U.S. was 51.7 in October and is now 49.5. Taking into account the noted global improvements that exclude the U.S., the article suggests that Americans’ issues cannot be blamed on stalled foreign economies.
Written within 24 hours of each other, how could these articles be so different?
One thing is for sure. Draw a Venn diagram on the two news stories and you’re bound to see one item in bold lying between them: The U.S. economy hinges on the resolution of the looming fiscal cliff
. Whether “tipped back” or “pushed forward,” the U.S. economy is in danger of entering another recession.