Last Thursday, home sales and construction data were released that provide little evidence of a meaningful recovery, let alone a rebust one. According to the New York Times:
According to new statistics, pending homes sales and construction both declined in May. In addition, figures showed that while manufacturers recorded some gains in June, the pace of activity in that sector slowed last month compared with May and also came in slightly below estimates.
“The idea of a growth slowdown in the second half of 2010, a long held belief of ours, is catching on as the data increasingly reinforces this idea,” said Dan Greenhaus, the chief economic strategist for Miller Tabak and Company.
Unfortunately, reporters continue to view this as evidence of the need for greater stimulus. Another interpretation that seems more and more plausible is that federal stimulus programs have done little more than move demand to different periods, creating uncertainty in sectors that desperately need stability to plan for future investment and employment.
See also my colleague Anthony Randazzo’s blot post here.