This was supposed to be a summer of recovery.
In fact, The White House even branded it “Recovery Summer.”
But with the summer officially over, we now know that there wasn’t much of a recovery at all, and the whole branding of it may go down as Obama’s “Mission Accomplished” moment.
June: 11.1 million sold
August: 11.4 million sold
Details: Total sales are stalled. Domestic sales are dropping, posting the worst August in 27 years. Cash For Clunkers is looking more and more like a miss.
May: $412 billion total orders
July: $410 billion total orders
Details: Not counting aircrafts, July data would mark a 1.5% drop, the worst in 16 months. After leading the recovery for months, manufacturing is stalling and starting to contract.
Consumer Sentiment Index June: 76
Consumer Sentiment Index August: 70
Consumer Board Index June: 54
Consumer Board Index August: 53
Details: Consumer sentiment dropped in June and July on bad economic news. Negative sentiment slowed or reversed in August.
June: -125,000 non-farm payroll
August: -54,000 non-farm payroll
Details: The August jobs report actually helped the market, as the private sector created 67,000 jobs. Job loss was less than expected following the census surge. Overall it's a mixed picture.
Details: With the census surge come and gone, unemployment is stuck at 9.6%. It's hard to say what how encouraged and discouraged workers are affecting the number.
Details: This measure of the service industry hit its lowest level since January.
June 1: 10,024
Sept. 7 (open): 10,320
Details: The Dow Jones Industrial Average is up nearly 3% since Memorial Day. Big gains in July melted away in August, before closing the summer with a surge.