Markets & Economy

Sacrifice youth on the altar of panic and we’ll pay a high price

Relax the overreaction to the credit bubble

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To the silent consternation of markets, today's report of March payrolls arrived exactly as expected, a gain of 192,000. Zounds. Since this report has never before come in as forecast, no one knows what to make of it. On our son's third birthday, the young man held court in his highchair while fiddling with his spaghetti and simultaneously kicking one foot up and down, over and over. Suddenly that shoe flew off, did perfect somersaults above his head and landed flat on his tray beside his plate. He remained deadpan, eyes in steady contact with the video camera, as though, "Oh, happens all the time." Thus today, bonds and stocks sit in stunned paralysis pretending all of this makes sense. The twin Institute for Supply Management (ISM) surveys for March: manufacturing from 53.2 to 53.7, and service sector from 51.6 to 53.1. So much for the better-weather surge. Wages are still stuck on a zero percent annual slope after inflation. Auto sales are up 7.3 percent year over year, more t...