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Chart of the Day
Posted at 3:20 p.m. on Nov. 20, 2013
— Neil Irwin provides this chart comparing the percent change in the University of Michigan’s consumer sentiment index (in blue) and in personal consumption expenditures (in red) over the last three decades.
“On one level, this is a reminder that consumer confidence surveys have a quite poor track record of predicting actual economic activity… In other words, it seems to be the case that these debt standoffs affect actual consumer behavior — and thus economic growth — only through financial-market channels, rather than directly.”