Let’s face it. When you ask Americans for their views on the state of the American economy today and their prospects for the future, it doesn’t matter who you ask, whether it’s your neighbor who owns a small business, a colleague at the factory or your spouse who teaches at the local elementary school, the sentiments most people share are pessimistic or cautious at best. These sentiments are reflected in some of the most recent consumer and business confidence data that show a sharp decline under the Biden administration.
With Congress having approved more than $6 trillion in spending over the past two years, a national debt now exceeding $30 trillion, a global pandemic that has only recently begun to fade, and wavering leadership from the White House, US consumer confidence and CEO prospects for the future hit new lows.
According to the Conference Board’s consumer confidence survey in July, the consumer confidence index fell, after a steeper decline in June, to 95.7 (1985=100), down 2.7 points compared to 98.4 in June. The Conference Board provides a Current Situation Index, “based on consumers’ assessment of current business and labor market conditions,” which fell to 141.3 from 147.2 last month. The Council also provides an expectations index, “based on consumers’ near-term outlook for income, business and labor market conditions”, which also fell to 65.3 from 65.8.
“Consumer confidence fell for a third straight month in July,” said Lynn Franco, senior director of economic indicators at The Conference Board. “The decline was mainly due to a drop in the current situation index – a sign that growth slowed at the start of the third quarter. The expectations index remained relatively stable, but remained well below a reading of 80, suggesting that recession risks remain Worries about inflation – rising gasoline and food prices, in particular – continued to weigh on consumers.
Last month, the Federal Reserve raised interest rates, as expected, by 0.75 points, its second consecutive time. Taken with an inflation rate of 8.5%, according to the July Consumer Price Index (CPI) report from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the rising cost of common household goods like gasoline (up 44%), groceries (up 14%) and utility bills (electricity up 15%; gas up 30%), weigh heavily on livelihoods of Americans, and those sentiments are reflected in the Conference Board data.
From the perspective of American companies, the Business Roundtable’s second quarter 2022 survey of 177 of America’s top CEOs showed major double-digit declines in all three categories that provide outlook for the next six months: plans hiring, capital investment plans and expectations. for sale.
“We urge the Biden administration to double domestic energy investments and take additional steps to address the high risk of a worsening global energy crisis. We are also calling on the administration to lower tariffs,” said Business Roundtable CEO Joshua Bolten. “We strongly oppose congressional efforts to impose tax increases on American businesses that would erode America’s competitive position and increase long-term economic risk.”
Republicans in Congress should heed this advice and continue to hammer the Biden administration for its inflationary efforts that usurp the hard-earned lives of millions of Americans. Inflation is a tax, which defrauds the middle class and lower class more than the wealthy, and with the tax increases of the so-called “Inflation Reduction Act”, recently passed by the Democratic Congress , the Republican message should remind Americans of Biden’s policies. broken promise not to tax Americans earning less than $400,000.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Senate Leader Chuck Schumer, and President Biden’s out-of-control tax-and-spend programs over the past two years have made living in America more expensive, with less money on your paycheck. after more hours worked. Biden’s America is where you work twice as hard and get half the reward, which happens first in socialist countries, before it’s all taken away by the government. Democrats hand Republicans a platter of courier money. Conservative leadership in government has always produced economic opportunity, growth and market stability. Republican plans for free markets, low taxes and less government can only come to fruition if Republicans loudly embrace this vision of prosperity and deliver that message clearly and effectively to voters this fall.
Bob Carlstrom is President AMAC Action
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