No one can really deny that the job market is really starting to kick in now.
This past week provided economists a very positive jobless claims report for the February 5 week. It showed a steep 36,000 decline in initial claims to 383,000 for the lowest total in 2-1/2 years.
The Labor Department -- which released the report -- suggested in their comments that the latest level is likely free of seasonal or weather related distortions.
The four-week average, which helps even out weekly distortions, fell a very substantial 16,000 to 415,500.
Adding further fuel to the positive jobs report was the news on Friday that the Reuter's/University of Michigan's Consumer sentiment index continues to improve and is approaching its mid-year 2010 recovery high.
The two positive reports added an exclamation point to a week that begin by showing retail sales numbers skyrocketing into February.
When all you read is gloom, turn here for a much different perspective.