Wholesale numbers, wholesale failure
Second quarter numbers are out this week for the wholesale sector and unfortunately for President Obama, the numbers offer few positives to highlight and instead reinforce the fact that the economy is not recovering as the Obama machine is trying so hard to have voters believe. The numbers are especially hard to take following another month of lackluster employment stats and surely have the Obama campaign scrambling for positive talking points to feed the media.
Wholesale sales saw their largest drop in over 3 years with a 1.4% decline. This stat, coupled with shrinking wholesale inventory stockpiles, could be an indication that growth will be slower in the coming months. Manufacturing is also worried that a drop in sales right now will stifle production demands in the near future. While wholesale numbers have been down, some economists point to June’s drop in U.S. trade deficit as a signal that the economic growth rate may see a slight bump next quarter. Abysmal growth in the first quarter of only 1.5% was not even enough to slow the growing unemployment numbers. The projected 1.8% laid out by Barclays Capital economist Peter Newland is a move in the right direction, but still falls far short of growth needed for a sustained recovery.
This seems to be the theme with Obama and the economy lately. Optimism and hope dashed with each new release of economic numbers and poor reports piling on and hammering Obama nearly every week. The President and his advisors are worried as polls remain close and the focus is repeatedly turned back to the economy. The fact that so many swing states are still within reach for Romney is especially troubling for them.
Earlier this month, unemployment numbers showed an uptick in the population of jobless to 8.3% which marks the 41st consecutive month above the dreaded 8% level. This mark was made infamous by Obama’s personal assurance that if lawmakers would approve his emergency stimulus package, 8% unemployment would be the absolute high-water mark for unemployment during our recovery. Oops!
As gas prices continue to creep up, inflation fears continue to grow, housing numbers remain stagnant, and lending and credit markets stay dry it becomes clearer that Obama must shy away from his record if he hopes to be reelected. This may explain the personal attacks launched on Romney in the last few weeks. Obama would have voters believe that Romney is a fraudulent felon, greedy tax evader and heartless murderer. This is a desperate case fueled by a failure to understand and adapt to a tough economic climate and a troubling example of stubborn dedication to ideology over creative problem solving compromise. While this week’s wholesale numbers are troubling, they may just be one more hole in the bottom of Obama’s economic ship.