The Institute for Supply Management issued its April report for the non-manufacturing sector, which dominates the American economy. The ISM's index measured at 56, versus Bloomberg consensus expectation for a reading of 53. The figure was also up from March's 52.4. So, you must be angry at me now. How can we be headed for recession if the services sector is doing so well, and we also had strong labor department news yesterday with positive implications for inflation and evidencing healthy employment.
Logic guides me, and it is steering me to believe the services sector should not start to suffer until after the consumer slows his spending. That should lead to some heads rolling in the retail sector and other industries impacted by reduced consumer outlays. I think that where we could debate is on the topic of whether the consumer will weaken or not, and that's where I am really out there with my view. The American consumer has been stalwart. But, the fact is, as evidenced again by GM's (NYSE:GM) news yesterday, credit is becoming harder to come by for folks, and interest rates are steady and could rise. Gasoline is expensive, and trips to the supermarket are becoming costlier. It's getting harder for American's to make those mall runs and excursions to restaurants.
We are not here to tell you how it is today, but fill you in on how it should be tomorrow. That's where this brave independent equity research provider adds value my friends. We do not mind the criticism that comes with running ahead of the curve while the Dow and S&P rocket (ouch), as the results of those forecasts are also the reason most of you are still reading today.