It’s stagnant.  No news there.  The reality is the economy has been hurting (for vastly different reasons) since that infamous day in September in 2001.  It did recover for a brief time around 2005-2006, but certainly since 2007, high unemployment and reduced wages are making life miserable for much of the middle class.

But what else is going on?  Prices are flat.  July’s consumer prices showed no change for the second month in a row.  This means that some prices went down, because gas prices were up in July.

Unemployment remains stagnant.  One month shows an increase in jobs created, the next an increase in those filing for unemployment.  It’s a mixed bag. 
According to a report from Reuters, (who provided the background for much of this article) industrial production increased .6% in July after a miniscule .1% in June.  The optimistic view is that this signals that markets are picking up.

On the consumer side, there was some good news of a sort.  According to the Wall Street Journal online, consumers are paying their credit card bills on time.  All major banks reported a decline in their delinquency rate.  There was hope here too, that this would loosen the very tight reins that bankers are holding with their lending funds.  There certainly is no one expecting a return to the free-wheeling type of lending that took place prior to 2007, but optimists are hoping for some purse-string loosening.

Now for the pessimist in us.  It’s election season.  This generally means that two sides yell at each other to the detriment of all others.

Maybe the overall economy will ignore them.  Time will tell.