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2011 Is Proving to Be a Horrible Year For the Economy

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Guess what? The U.S. economy stinks! That may not come as a surprise but it's actually worse than the government first thought. While politicians in Washington bungle this debt ceiling debate the economy is mired in slow growth.

The economy grew at a 1.3% annual rate in the second quarter, but what's worse and more shocking is the Commerce Department revised first quarter growth to just 0.4% from its previous estimate of 1.9%. The combined growth for the first 6 months is the weakest since the recession ended.

Jeff Macke and Aaron Task discuss the state of the economy in the accompanying clip. Both say while the U.S. is not technically in recession (usually defined as two consecutive quarters of negative growth), the slow growth and above 9% unemployment sure make it feel like a recession.

Just look at consumer sentiment. Those numbers fell to their lowest levels in more than two years in July according to the Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan index. 9.2% unemployment, stagnant wages and concerns over the debt ceiling debate all weighed on Americans.

If Washington can't find a good solution to the debt talks and help create jobs in the near future, say goodbye to the "recovery" and hello to another recession, which for many feels like it never left.