Recovery Bubble Bursting

We’ve been hearing for a while now that the recession is over, that the world is getting back to “normal” in the wake of Wall St.’s Great Train Robbery and that we should just wait for the jobs to rain down like free market manna. A tiny AP story, however, suggests that the opposite is likely to happen (at least as far as the United States is concerned), because our paper recovery is already showing signs of abatement:

The index of leading economic indicators rose 0.3 percent last month, according to Thursday’s report from the Conference Board, a private research group. That’s weaker than a 1.2 percent rise in December and a 1.1 percent rise in November.

Its also was short of the 0.5 percent gain that economists polled by Thomson Reuters expected.

The index has risen for nearly a year thanks to a recovery in the manufacturing sector and the rally in the stock market.

Some economists have been worrying that growth in the economy will stagnate this year, however, as government support programs wind down and unemployment remains high.

But lookey here: The DOW Jones has rebounded despite people still losing their homes and their jobs, so why would the media let wonkish economic indicators get in the way of the Great American Comeback? Or spoil their fun allowing the narrative of a “failed” $780 billion stimulus package to take root?

Reality bites.