Despite optimism in the financial markets, people are spending less, per Wall Street Journal lead story by Ben Leubsdorf:
- "Stocks hit records [yesterday] and big U.S. banks reported stronger-than-expected earnings. But new government data showed consumers pulled back spending at mid-year even as markets rallied. Households also grew less optimistic about the future and inflation on consumer purchases softened."
- "Trump has set out an agenda to push economic growth well beyond the roughly 2% pace that has prevailed since the recession ended in 2009, but so far there is little sign of a real breakout happening."
- Be smart: "Markets—as they sometimes do— took bad economic news as good investment news."
- Why it matters: "The president has suggested a number of policies to spur growth, including a tax overhaul and major infrastructure spending, but those aren't yet close to reality."