An article today in Bloomberg News titled “Obama Defies Pessimists as Rising Economy Converges With Stocks” points out that that “economy has … strengthened beyond expectations at the time Obama took office” and highlights the Recovery Act as essential to this improvement. Other key points include:

“‘You have to give them -- along with the Federal Reserve - - a lot of credit,’ said Joseph Carson, director of economic research at AllianceBernstein LP in New York. ‘A year ago, there was panic, as well as concern. And a lot of the expectations were not only that we were going to have declines in activity but they would stretch all the way to 2010, if not 2011.’”

“Since then, monthly job losses have abated, from 779,000 during the month Obama took office to 36,000 last month. Corporate profits have grown; among 491 companies in the S&P 500 that reported fourth-quarter earnings, profits rose 180 percent from a year ago, according to Bloomberg data. Durable goods orders in January were up 9.3 percent from a year earlier. Inflation is tame, and long-term interest rates remain low.”