The Flinchum File

Thoughtful Economic Analysis and Existential Opinions
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Our Growth “Governor”

I hate to sound like a broken record, but . . . the Index of Leading Economic Indicators (LEI) was up again last month.  This traditionally means there is no recession on the 12-18 month time horizon.  Our economy being propelled by new manufacturing orders, consumer expectations, stock prices, and capital goods.

But, there is an interesting change.  The LEI has slowed over the last three months – still positive but slowing.  Apparently, the lack of available labor is starting to slow us down.  This doesn’t indicate a recession, but does indicate that the labor shortage is becoming a “governor” on our growth.

The traditional Republican view is that we could get more workers if people were forced to work.  While I agree those people should get no welfare nor food stamps, I think American employers would prefer non-lazy workers.  Whether those lazy people get benefits or not, that sidetracks the issue —   we need more non-lazy workers.

The traditional Democratic view is that we should allow more immigration.  Visions of the Border Patrol pop into the mind, but don’t forget – America is blessed with a long line of applicants for LEGAL immigration.  We need them, and they want us!  Unfortunately, our quota system is obsolete and will soon be limiting our economic growth.

More LEGAL immigration is NOT bad.  In fact, we need to OPEN the doors to more legal immigrants.