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Raising the Debt Ceiling

Better jobs number gives hope to U.S. economy, despite debt talk

Marketplace Staff Jul 28, 2011
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Stacey Vanek Smith: Adolfo Laurenti joins us now. He’s Deputy Chief Economist at Mesirow financial in Chicago. He’s with us live. Good morning, Adolfo.

Adolfo Laurenti Good morning, Stacey.

Vanek Smith: It seems like we’ve been hearing one piece of bad news after the other. Are these job numbers a sign that things are turning around?

Laurenti: Well, we are always careful to make a trend out of a single data point. But, I think it is an encouraging development. It shows that this lowdown we suffered in the spring and early summer was indeed temporary. The economy has the potential to bounce back. Unless, of course, we suffer a new setback because of the political uncertainty in the debt-ceiling drama we are experiencing in Washington D.C.

Vanek Smith: Will that debt ceiling drama — assuming it gets resolved, and maybe that’s a big assumption — will it have a lasting impact? Will it affect other countries ability to have enough faith in our political system to keep buying our debt?

Laurenti: Well, I remain confident in the stance of the United States in the world — before global investors — but the longer it takes to come up with a solution, the deeper the economic will go, and the longer it take to bounce back. I will also add the longer it will take to come up with the solution, the higher the risk becomes to treat a full-blown financial crisis — the jump in interest rates and the steep decline in the value of the dollar — that’s something that we definitely do not want to see.

Vanek Smith: And what about the situation in Europe? Is that any different?

Laurenti: Yes, I would say it’s a substantially different because what we are really discussing here is not our ability to pay for our bills — what we are discussing is how to pay for our bills. The problem in Europe is they are running out of money. They are definitely in more dire straits and need to be significant sacrifices to their lifestyle to achieve a balance — that we can still do at a reasonable cost if we proceed discreetly right now with no further delay.

Vanek Smith: Adolfo Laurenti with Mesirow financial… Thank you!

Laurenti: Thank you.

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