I like to look at Google Trends every so often. Today I decided to plug in some economic buzz words and target them to USA searches
Here is one for foreclosure:
Google Trends: foreclosure
If you do the same search on recession:
Google Trends: recession
So if you do a search for "double dip" you can see what's happening:
Google Trends: double dip
Here you can see how many people are searching for "v shape" recovery:
Google Trends: v shape
It's pretty neat stuff to look at.
I downloaded the .csv for "recession" and made a 26 week moving average to see if you could identify a deviation that signaled things were about to go in the dumper. By the end of October 2007 it was clearly off and by January 2008 it was over 300% above the norm from the previous few years. IMO that's a pretty good signal things might be headed downhill and it would be proper to prepare.
I know. I know. Market timing is a game we should not play but it is interesting to think about how new sources of information could shed light on what people are thinking.
What other keywords would be good indicators of up or down swings in the markets?