Wait… a contracting economy is *bad*?

Missed this the other day, but it jibes nicely with the giddy excitement about the Canadian economy reporting a mere 5.4% (annualized) contraction in the first quarter of 2009. -5.4%, guys! Practically growing! Never mind that the outlook is not for growth for the rest of the year, but for continued, if not necessarily as significant, contraction, while the now-official recession drags on. Who cares if there hasn’t been such a bad GDP reading since 1991. Green shoots!

And so, this makes sense:

Canadians optimistic about economy despite downturn: Poll

According to the article, the poll results show that Canadians have not been more optimistic about the economy in EIGHTEEN YEARS. Which, come to think of it, is also 1991, a miserable time of contraction that led to a painful, slow, lost decade (or most of one) in Canada. Good to see Canadians still have the sharp insight into the economic state of the nation displayed back then.

And there’s this: “Last weekend, 53 per cent of those surveyed said they thought the economy was in either in “good” or “very good” shape.” If this is the economy in “very good” shape, I’d hate to see the “fair” iteration.