The Economist detects green-shoots in the economic narrative


About a month ago, I wrote about my notice of a shift in the media’s economic narrative. For the first time since September, I was beginning to read stories that did not fall lock-step into the economic abyss narrative — articles that were beginning to include glimmers of hope without standard issue editorial caveats.

In that post, I explained that narrative-shift markers include:

1. Recession winner stories.
2. Statistics stories without a caveat explaining away any good news.
3. Stories about the role of psychology in economic cycles.
4. Stories that challenge the premise this is the worst recession since the Great Depression.

To that list, add what The is calling “the green-shoots index.” Apparently, the phrase “green shoots” is cropping up (unintended pun) as a metaphor economists are using to suggest there are hopeful signs in the economy during a period that corresponds to the annual signs of hope in nature. As the Economist’s chart shows, “green shoots” mentions in media coverage of the economy are busting out all over.

Note: While my “narrative” post was not about my opinion of the economy, just my opinion of how it is being written about, I have written other times revealing my personal belief that the only economist worth listening to is Chance the Gardner (or Chauncey Gardiner), the original green shoots economist.