Economic recovery is about making people feel more confident, says Mark Zandi, chief economist of Moody’s Economy.com.
Zandi evidenced increasing home sales and gains in the stock market are some promising signs that the worst is over and people will start spending again.
“We’re starting to see some pent-up demand for goods,” he says.
But Zandi warns that the situation is still fragile. “Confidence is a very fickle thing. It can go from abject pessimism that pervades now to a more balanced view of the world rather quickly.”
Robert Brusca of FAO Economics is predicting strong growth in the last half of the year and a quick recovery for the labor market. “You’ve lost 5 million jobs. It shouldn’t be hard to put 2.5 million jobs back on rather quickly after you hit bottom,” he said.
Joseph Carson, chief economist at AllianceBernstein, calls improving home sales, a rising stock market, and better-than-expected retail sales in February and March good signs of a turnaround. By the time President Obama’s stimulus package takes effect, the economy will be ready, he says.
“The stimulus has a much better chance of working if trends are already turning up than if it needs to halt a decline,” he said.