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For some perspective on the current government shutdown and threat of default, today's chart plots the weekly Gallup Economic Confidence Index. As today's chart illustrates, economic confidence was trending higher and making post-financial crisis highs as late as June 2013. Then the government stepped in. Since that peak, confidence dropped significantly only to accelerate beginning in late September as the government shutdown appeared imminent and a potential default approached. So even what amounts to a 'partial' government shutdown and a 'mere' threat of default has already had an impact on US economic confidence (other issues such as reduced GDP growth, furloughed workers, potential credit rating cuts, reduced global standing, etc. notwithstanding). Reduced economic confidence can encourage consumers to spend less which can in turn slow an already sluggish job market.

Notes:
Where's the Dow headed? The answer may surprise you. Find out right now with the exclusive & Barron's recommended charts of Chart of the Day Plus.

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Quote of the Day
"Everything is changing. People are taking their comedians seriously and the politicians as a joke." - Will Rodgers

Events of the Day
October 24, 2013 - United Nations Day

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