zerohedge.com / by Jeffrey Snider via Alhambra Investment Partners / Oct 13, 2016 11:41 AM
Four years ago, recession fatigue had set in as by then it was already several years into recovery even though it just didn’t seem that way. Historical experience had been uniform in business cycle symmetry; the economy comes back with same intensity and pace by which it had been knocked down. From that expectation alone the economy of 2012 should have been roaring in every way imaginable. That view was only amplified by so much “stimulus” including two QE’s, more than three years of ZIRP by then, and a completed ARRA.
Yet, there were only constant interruptions. Though they seemed to be more European or “overseas” in nature, there was the nagging feeling that “something” was off. Economists were quick to claim that anything holding back great relief was but temporary, a belief they thought would be greatly strengthened later in the year (2012) with a third (then a fourth) QE. Weakness, then, could not have been weakness, it was always something else.
From that point on the litany of excuses has been at times entertaining, while at other times downright absurd. In December 2012, for example, CNBC reported that though Christmas sales in 2011 were marginally healthy, in 2012 they weren’t even close. The reasons provided at the time may have seemed plausible if only because it was guided (biased) by orthodox economic “analysis”:
Shoppers were buffeted this year by a string of events that made them less likely to spend: Superstorm Sandy and other bad weather, the distraction of the presidential election and grief about the massacre of schoolchildren in Newtown, Connecticut.
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