The Prevailing Moods Are Gloomy And Gloomier

Optimism seems to be a scarce commodity on the U.S. economic scene these days. According to the University of Michigan's latest consumer survey, the steady decline in consumer confidence this year has now erased all of the gains recorded since last August. Meanwhile, Dun & Bradstreet Corp. reports that manufacturers' moods deteriorated in July for the third straight month, reflecting "not just anxiety about the economy, but a fundamental weakness in the manufacturing sector."

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