State of Business: V for Velocity

In gauging the strength of a business recovery, economists are fond of using the letter V to describe the pattern made on the graphs by a fast and vigorous comeback, the letter U to describe a slow one. Last week, for the first time since the 1960-61 recession began to wane, there were some cautious bets on V. On Wall Street the switch was reflected in growing confidence that the stock market is in for a new and sustained advance.

If evidence of a V-shaped recovery increases, it will inevitably affect the decisions of U.S. businessmen in two areas that...

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