August 20, 2010

First, there's this technical definition that says there's a recovery. Why? Because some rich people are getting richer? If the economy doesn't serve the broadest group of citizens and there aren't jobs for people who want them, what kind of recovery is that? Perhaps this is why economists are so often confused.

Maybe, as Atrios says, somebody should do something?

A slowdown in American manufacturing and weak employment data sent stocks lower on Thursday as investors continued to absorb news of a weak economic recovery.

The separate reports from the Federal Reserve and the Labor Department were a fresh reminder of the slow pace of the recovery. Manufacturing, in particular, had shown tentative signs of a rebound in recent months.

The reports were enough to reverse the upward trend of the previous two days, when the market rose 1.1 percent.

“You had a one-two punch in one day,” said Doug Roberts, chief investment strategist for the Channel Capital Research Institute.

The result was a broad sell-off. The Dow Jones industrial average fell 144.33 points, or 1.39 percent, to 10,271.21. The broader Standard & Poor’s 500-stock index declined 18.53 points, or 1.69 percent, to 1,075.63, and the Nasdaq composite index fell 36.75 points, or 1.66 percent, to 2,178.95.

Financial, materials and industrial stocks all fell more than 2 percent.

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