Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Look for positives in these times

It is tough to find good economic news these days, but I can tell you from personal experience that there are strong markets in today's environment. Our agency has considerable business in the manufacturing sector, specifically, metalworking. The growth in markets including energy, aerospace, military and medical is strong. Our clients are busy, and their customers are busy. The export market is growing rapidly as well. We will soon be publisihing the results of some research conducted within this industry, and I am happy to report that there is optimism out there - even in a sector as beaten down as manufactring.

In a recent article in Newsweek, Robert Samuelson also shares some reason for confidence. His comments reinforce the reason that advertisers should stay aggressive during these times. The competition will likely pull back, the rebound will reward those who stay agressive.

(Excerpt from Newsweek)
The paradoxical thing about today's economy is its strength. No kidding. Consider all the hand grenades lobbed at it. Higher oil prices. The housing implosion. Large layoffs in affected industries: autos, airlines, construction, mortgage banking. The "credit squeeze" triggered by losses on "subprime" mortgages. Despite all that, the economy hasn't collapsed. It's merely weakened. Output in the first quarter of 2008 was actually 2.5 percent higher than a year earlier.

We are relearning an old lesson: The business cycle isn't dead. Prosperity's pleasures breed complacency and inspire mistakes that, in time, boomerang on financial markets, job creation and production. Just as expansions ultimately tend to self-destruct, so downswings tend to generate self-correcting forces. People pay down debts; pent-up demand develops; surviving companies expand. The Great Depression was an exception. The present economy would have to get much, much, much worse before it warranted the same appraisal. - Robert Samuelson, Newsweek

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