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« Wow, What A Week. | WILLisms.com | The Best Of The Trivia Tidbits Of The Day. »

Trivia Tidbit Of The Day: Part 200 -- America's Roaring Economy.


America's economy is booming.

No, really. You hadn't heard?

Our economy, by far the largest in the world, is also growing faster than just about every industrialized country on the planet.

In the third quarter of 2005, America's economy grew at an annual rate of 3.8%.


This marks 16 straight quarters of growth. 16 quarters, of course, is the same as four straight years of economic growth. 3.8% may not sound spectacular, but it is very strong. For example, in 2004, Japan grew at a 2.9% rate, Canada grew at a 2.4% rate, Germany grew at a 1.7% rate, France grew at a 2.1% rate, and the United Kingdom grew at a 3.2% rate.

So why do polls and surveys continue to show such poor attitudes from Americans on the American economy?

One might be tempted to say that it's because the statistics on GDP growth are meaningless or inaccurate, or that those gains are not trickling down to average Americans. This would be a mistake. Oddly enough, throughout this economic boom, Americans have expressed confidence in their own personal economic situations, just not the American economy overall.

Not only that, but people have continued to "vote with their feet" on the economy, regardless of what they have told pollsters. People are still buying homes and cars and computers and other consumer goods in strong numbers, not exactly the kind of behavior we would expect from people who are worried about losing their jobs or the economy going sour.

What could all of this mean? How are consumer confidence numbers so low, while measurable consumer spending itself is so robust? How is it that Americans are so concerned about outsourcing and jobs, when millions of jobs have been added in the past couple of years? How is it that Americans express doubts about the overall U.S. economy, with so many consecutive quarters of positive GDP growth?

Maybe that the media have done a typically poor job reporting on the economy. Maybe that the consumer confidence surveys are less meaningful than they once were in terms of predicting recessions.

Whatever it is, the overwhelming accumulation of good news has to sink in someday, right? Preferably before November of 2006.


BizzyBlog.com has more astounding trivia tidbits you probably didn't know about the American economy, past and present. Go check 'em out.


Previous Trivia Tidbit: The Still Emerging Latino Vote.

Posted by Will Franklin · 29 October 2005 10:12 AM


I LOVE BIZZY BLOG BUT HAVE NOT HAD TIME TO BLOG LATELY! Woops! my cap lock was on before I noticed. Sorry ! I wasn't trying to yell!... If you talk to File It Under guys tell them Hello! I wish I could stay but I have to go ! Did you try the MRE's that Linda sent you???....I shall return!

Posted by: Zsa Zsa at October 29, 2005 05:41 PM

Anchoress and Dr. Sanity have great posts on the econ data:



Dr. Sanity is absolutely awesome on the psychology of MSM biz reporting.

Posted by: Tom Blumer at October 30, 2005 12:38 PM