Jeremy Hobson: The government said this morning that consumer spending jumped in this country 0.6 percent last month. That spending came at the expense of savings, which dropped.
Well that is more data that we can add to yesterday’s news that the U.S. economy grew at a rate of 2.5 over the summer. And of course there was the news out of Brussels that there is a plan to deal with the debt crisis in Europe.
For more on what all of this means for the economy, let’s bring in Mike Holland, CEO of Holland and Company. He’s filling in for Chris Low this morning and he with us live from New Canaan, Conn. Good morning.
Mike Holland: Good morning, Jeremy.
Hobson: So, Mike, some relief in Europe, some good news on the domestic economy — have we turned a corner?
Holland: The quick answer is yes with respect to Europe, because people had pretty much written off the possibility of anything constructive. This phrase “kicking the can down the road” had become a cliche about both Europe and the U.S. with respect to the politicians.
And Angela Merkel 24 hours ago, 48 hours ago, actually started something that surprised — to the upside — a very positive development that she was able to craft, even. The naysayers are already out there, Jeremy, saying well this is one step in the right direction, but the hard work is yet to come. This is a major positive surprise and the markets reflected that yesterday. Now the U.S. politicians have to go to work in November.
Hobson: Well that’s the next question. I mean we’ve got this super committee, these negotiations — which appear to be kind of deadlocked right now — could that end up like the debt ceiling debate and really put the economy in trouble again?
Holland: Yes, it could. Your question is perfectly phrased, and that’s where we were a few days ago in respect to Europe. And Angela Merkel was able to surprise people. She was able to show leadership, she was able to bring together seventeen disparate entities.
As one wag reported on it several days ago, it was like having seventeen Nancy Pelosis at the table and trying to get them to come together with something, and she did it.
The U.S. politicians on both sides of the aisle both have to come up with something. There’s already been a salvo from each side — from the Republicans and from the Democrats — that this is a non-starter with respect to where we are.
But that’s where we were with the Europeans — let’s see if some of our people in Washington act like adults like they did in Europe just a couple of days ago.
Hobson: Mike Holland, CEO of Holland and Company, thanks so much.
Holland: Thank you, Jeremy.
As a nonprofit news organization, our future depends on listeners like you who believe in the power of public service journalism.
Your investment in Marketplace helps us remain paywall-free and ensures everyone has access to trustworthy, unbiased news and information, regardless of their ability to pay.
Donate today — in any amount — to become a Marketplace Investor. Now more than ever, your commitment makes a difference.