Well, it looks like January 2010 has finally arrived. Goodbye 2009, and hello 2010!
According to most public sentiment surveys I've seen thus far, the overwhelming consensus is that 2009 was a particularly terrible year. The economy tanked, retirement savings were largely wiped out, and home equity values were pretty much eviscerated. However, where there's misery, there always seems to be a smidgen lining of hope. Despite most people's vastly negative opinion of 2009, the great majority of surveys indicate a very optimistic outlook for 2010. Maybe it's because this time around, we are no longer staring at the barrel of an imminent financial sector meltdown and hearing the ghastly doomsday warnings of a possible decade-long economic depression, but things certainly feel less dire than the same time 12 months ago.
Most certainly, while we are still languishing under the worst economic recession in decades with depressive unemployment rates continuing to climb, the pace at which the economy continues to worsen has drastically decreased. In other words, while the economy is still deteriorating, it's worsening at a significantly slower pace than before. This is very good news for the aspiring optimists and opportunists in all of us. Most significantly, there also does appear to be tangible economic metrics emerging to back up the growing optimistic fervor for 2010. While I personally think we are still many months away from a real and sustainable recovery, I think we are decidedly heading in the right direction as punctuated by the fact that I've been jumping back into the stock Read the full article »