Industry NewsMarkets & Economy

Economy is still in the ICU

Future-Proof: Navigate Threats, Seize Opportunities at ICNY 2018 | Jan 22-26 at the Marriott Marquis, Times Square, New York

In the early 1970s we used to say to each other, especially when embarking on a questionable adventure, "When the going gets weird, the weird get going!" Get going out there. The dominant economic and financial commentary has us in strengthening recovery, and a serious minority says we are near new recession. Both are correct and mistaken. Begin at the very beginning, circa 1990, when the entrance of China into global markets began to undercut Western wages. We were still so rich that we didn't notice. A dozen years ago we found it easy to borrow to maintain our standard of living, until the whole shebang hit the wall, from Anaheim, Calif., to Athens, Greece. In the last five years, the U.S. Federal Reserve and European Central Bank have prevented a collapse of the financial system, buying time until we get our affairs in order by other means, which we have not gotten around to. We are in the Central Bank Intensive Care Unit, and all the beeping and hissing and...