Executive Briefing

The great unclenching

Also: A net promoter score for human existence. Chipotle’s new mega-George Foreman grill. And is 10 million Apple Cards good?

The throughline from my past few weeks of conversations, meetings, research, and reading: Things are actually looking okay right now. The US economy isn’t collapsing into the serious recession that many had feared.

The consumer is feeling better about life — it’s literally in our survey data (see next). And there’s an unclenching feeling going around: Prime Day spending was up; airports and movie theaters are packed; early-stage venture investors are busy on new deals and new funds.

We are not, to be clear, out of the woods: There are still bridge rounds to raise and more trims ahead. Some bad outcomes are inevitable for those who flew too close to the COVID/ZIRP sun. More labor action — like the averted UPS strike, which could have been disruptive for e-commerce — feels likely. Money is still moving much more cautiously. Things can always turn.

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Dan Frommer

Hi, I’m Dan Frommer and this is The New Consumer, a publication about how and why people spend their time and money.

I’m a longtime tech and business journalist, and I’m excited to focus my attention on how technology continues to profoundly change how things are created, experienced, bought, and sold. The New Consumer is supported by your membership — join now to receive my reporting, analysis, and commentary directly in your inbox, via my member-exclusive newsletter. Thanks in advance.

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