Mention the economy, and some are now convinced that light at the end of the tunnel is an oncoming train.
Twice a year, the topnotch financial publication, Barron’s, holds a day-long Roundtable with a dozen financial experts and publishes the discussion in three installments that underlines its importance. These are real experts and not just the talking heads that pop up on TV for 30 seconds. The discussion gets highly technical, and is usually optimistic, but in the recent Roundtable the term “kicking the can” came up often. Not just our government, but all major governments—in both Europe and Asia—are applying patches of temporary financial help, but are not addressing the underlying problems. They are all “kicking the can down the road,” hoping things will somehow work out. The Barron’s editors summed up the consensus in one sentence (okay, two):
The sky is falling—but very, very slowly. It could take another year, or two or four, before the dollar tumbles, the Euro crumbles and the price of gold, that great hedge against disaster, makes its way to the stratosphere.
(See the 6/6/09 posting “The Oreo Generation” and the 12/29/09 “Keeping Up”)