If you are like me, you find today's economic news is like a Stephen King horror novel. The possible breakup of the Euro, deflationary forces growing and being made worse by the worst possible timing for the implementation of austerity economics, and Chinese real estate bubbling with a burst inevitable add up to real risk of depression.
No surprise that in reaction global oil prices have fallen and the US stock market has lost 17 percent since April, when it reached its high since the last time the world stood at the edge of economic collapse in the 4th quarter of 2008 and the first quarter of 2009.
All this gloom made me ready for some football but both the Eagles and Steelers lost. I am so ready for any good economic news.
In an effort to lift rationally spirits, I highlight the September car sales. They were up 10% from one year ago, reaching a relatively healthy annualized rate of 13.1 million. General Motors and Chrysler sales were up 20% and Ford's nearly 9%.
Car sales matter a lot, because they account for 20% of consumer spending, and about 14% of total demand. The US economy will not return to health without if the auto and housing industries are flat on their back. At least auto is showing real signs of recovery.
What's driving the increase of auto sales? Good products and prices but also necessity. The average vehicle on the road is 10.7 years and is just plain wearing out.