Friday, May 6, 2011

The left hand doesn't know what the right hand is doing; editors at the NYT confused by the latest economic data

The editors at the Times are having few problems deciding today if the economy is gaining steam or slowing down - such is the conflicting news on the economy.
For while the editors have splashed the news about a decent hiring report as the lead on its website, buried inside in the business and opinion sections are additional articles that tell the opposite story.

Paul Krugman's column today expresses doubts about any recovery, for instance.

"From G.D.P. to private-sector payrolls, from business surveys to new claims for unemployment insurance, key economic indicators suggest that the recovery may be sputtering," Krugman writes, adding "And it wasn’t much of a recovery to start with."

Krugman's problem with the state of things is that he does not see much emphasis on job creation, while he sees an overemphasis on inflation fear mongering.

"What does Washington currently fear? Topping the list is fear that budget deficits will cause a fiscal crisis any day now. In fact, a number of people — like Erskine Bowles and Alan Simpson, the co-chairmen of President Obama’s debt commission — have settled on a specific time frame: terrible things will happen within two years unless we make drastic spending cuts," Krugman writes.

Well, I am sure that there are opposing views, but it is interesting to note that the editors of the news pages don't seem to be reading the columns by their economics columnist.