Three signs that the economy could be poised to boom

Being optimistic by nature, I like to look for good news. So, a handful of recent articles on the economy struck me as a possible harbinger of good times ahead. These reports suggest that consumers and businesses are wising up by borrowing less, living within their means, and -- in the case of a lucky handful of companies -- piling billions of cash onto their balance sheets through initial public offerings. These developments could be laying the groundwork for an economic recovery.

Since 70 percent of GDP growth comes from consumer spending, the reports that consumer spending and borrowing are down clearly suggest short-term bad news. On Oct. 7, AP reported that more people are using food stamps and that more are cooking at home instead of going out to restaurants. With 15.1 million unemployed, this doesn't come as a big surprise.