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Obama’s Point of No Return?

Lynn Franco, director of The Conference Board Consumer Research Center, reports, “Consumer confidence deteriorated sharply in August, as consumers grew significantly more pessimistic about the short-term outlook. The index is now at its lowest level in more than two years. A contributing factor may have been the debt ceiling discussions since the decline in confidence was well underway before the S&P downgrade. Consumers’ assessment of current conditions, on the other hand, posted only a modest decline as employment conditions continue to suppress confidence.”…

The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index®, which had improved slightly in July, plummeted in August. The Index now stands at 44.5 (1985=100), down from 59.2 in July. (The Consumer Confidence Index is benchmarked to 1985=100 because it was neither a peak nor a trough year). This simply confirms what other (depressing) economic data has shown.

There are still 14 eventful and unpredictable months between now and November 6, 2012. But if the president fails in his re-election bid, there will be many contributing factors. And during the post-mortems people may well go back to this terrible summer of 2011 – and most especially this awful August – as Obama’s point of no return, when the presidency slipped from his grasp, when his fate was essentially sealed.



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