Watching for an economic recession is one thing, watching for a financial crisis is something different. And, a financial crisis is much worse than a normal recession!
Those confident consumers have nearly stopped saving, down to 3.1% of income, which is down from 6% just two years ago. The national debt continues to rise, credit card usage is up, and corporate bonds are being issued at a rapid rate (to lock-in low rates on money they may need in the future) Total debt is rising.
Remember the Minsky Moment, named after the American economist, Hyman Minsky, who believes a debt balloon will continue to expand — until it pops, producing a financial crisis. It is very premature to start worrying about a financial crisis, but it deserves more attention right now than the economic data deserves.
The decision by the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME) to begin a futures market in bitcoins worries me, and I will be watching it carefully. You should too!