business news in context, analysis with attitude

The National Retail Federation (NRF), meeting in New York this week for its annual conference, predicts that total retail sales in 2003 will improve 5.6 percent over 2002.

The organization’s chief economist, Rosalind Wells, said that the second half of the year should be stronger than the first half, as the economy gets turned around and emerges from the doldrums.
KC's View:
Okay, we know we’re gonna get hammered by a bunch of you for being pessimistic. But it seems to us that maybe this year people ought to not make predictions about retail sales and other economic phenomena. After all, there could be a war. Could be two wars. Could be more terrorist attacks. And there could be countless other incidents that could have a dramatic impact on how and what people buy.

Not making predictions -- as radical a notion as that seems -- might be a good way of not providing yardsticks by which achievements can be measured. Normally, we believe in keeping score…but our general skepticism on this issue makes us think that maybe a new approach is required.