‘Subpar’ Now Par for the Economic Course

The Wall Street Journal, Friday, July 27, 2012


AHEAD OF THE TAPE, By Spencer Jakab

Subpar’ Now Par for the Economic Course

Don’t quite get this, as I don’t think golfers use subpar.  Below par is more commonly used.  Par is average, and, of course, a golfer would love to be below par, get a birdie (one under par) or an eagle (two under par) because the lowest score wins.  Perhaps, it works as a metaphor for economic news.

“Tiger Woods may feel encouraged by the phrase ‘subpar.’  Not Ben Bernake.  Unfortunately, of the thousands of times that word appeared in media reports recently, the majority were in the context of economics rather than golf.  Friday’s first take on U.S. gross-domestic-product growth for the second quarter is unlikely to improve the mood:  Forecasters see an annualized increase of just 1.5 %.  ….

What’s more, today’s tepid climb is from a deeper hole than any since the Great Depression–about three times worse than the average downturn since 1960.  Granted, today’s recession is marked by the need for deleveraging, making it different from a business-cycle downturn…

Washington already has unleashed far more firepower on the downturn than usual and received scant bang for its buck.  All the more reason the Fed may soon take an even more aggressive swing at boosting growth.  Fore!”


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