Gunnar Rathbun / AP

When it comes to the economy, people feel one way but act in a completely different manner. That's what the Wall Street Journal's lead story shows — that we are optimistic about the state of the economy, yet we're not spending money.

"Uneven retail spending stands in sharp contrast to soaring measures of consumer confidence. The University of Michigan's consumer-sentiment measure ... is near the highest level in more than a decade," WSJ's Eric Morath writes.

Why it matters: The election reportedly has something to do with this feeling vs. spending situation. Consumers steadily reported economic optimism since the 2016 election, despite Trump's delayed agenda thanks to a continued focus on replacing Obamacare. But, the hard data suggests these feelings aren't strong enough for consumers to support the economy with their hard-earned money — and that has retailers worried.

Fast facts: Thursday's results from the consumer-sentiment survey showed the index has risen to 98 (on a scale of 100). The survey measures consumers' optimism about the state of the economy and their personal financial situation. Meanwhile, in March there was a 0.2% decrease in sales among U.S. restaurants, and online and retail stores compared to the previous month. February had a 0.3% sales decrease.

Go deeper

Markets swell as the economy shrinks

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

The economy is sputtering, but the markets are thriving — a highly unusual event that shows how the coronavirus has thrown all bets off.

Why it matters: The disconnect adds to the wealth gap. The richest 10% of households — who own 84% of stocks — are getting richer, while millions of out-of-work Americans cross their fingers that pandemic unemployment benefits will be extended.

Updated 9 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 10 p.m. ET: 10,836,500 — Total deaths: 520,605 — Total recoveries — 5,723,808Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 10 p.m. ET: 2,735,554 — Total deaths: 128,684 — Total recoveries: 781,970 — Total tested: 33,462,181Map.
  3. Public health: The states where face coverings are mandatory Regeneron stops trial after drug fails to help patientsWhat we know about the coronavirus immune response — Fauci says it has been a "very disturbing week" for the spread of the coronavirus in the U.S.
  4. Business: Top business leaders urge the White House to develop mandatory mask guidelines.
  5. Politics: Herman Cain hospitalized for COVID-19 after attending Trump Tulsa rally — Biden downplays jobs number, rebukes Trump for ignoring health crisis.
  6. Economy: The economy may recover just quickly enough to kill political interest in more stimulus.
  7. States: Texas mandates face masks in public spaces Florida reports more than 10,000 new coronavirus cases, and its most-infected county issues curfew.
10 hours ago - Health

Fauci: Coronavirus surges mark a "very disturbing week" in the U.S.

Fauci testifies to the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee on June 30. Photo: Al Drago/AFP via Getty Images

NIAID director Anthony Fauci told medical journal JAMA on Thursday that it has been a "very disturbing week" for the spread of the novel coronavirus in the U.S.

What's happening: The number of coronavirus cases increased in the vast majority of states over the last week, and decreased in only two states plus the District of Columbia, Axios' Caitlin Owens reports.