business news in context, analysis with attitude

Reuters reports that "the Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan's preliminary reading on the overall index on consumer sentiment came in at 80.4, down from 82.5 in December." The number seems to weighed down, the story suggests, "by lowered expectations among lower- and middle-income families," which are concerned "about lackluster growth in employment and income, and anticipated less improvement in long-term prospects for the economy."
KC's View:
I have to wonder if the lowered expectations among lower and middle class families have something to do with all the stories being dedicated to income disparity in the US and throughout the globe.

There is a story in the Los Angeles Times this morning that says that "the 85 richest people on Earth now have the same amount of wealth as the bottom half of the global population, according to a report released Monday by the British humanitarian group Oxfam International."

It would be completely natural for a lot of people to read that and feel lowered expectations because they sense that the deck is stacked against them. And I continue to feel like this is going to be an enormous public policy debate, especially as we move into mid-term elections later this year and a presidential election in 2016.