Confirmation on the strength, or lack thereof, of the economy can come from multiple sources. In that the consumer accounts for 2/3rds of U.S. economic activity, we are forever digging deep for data that instruct us as to how the everyday American is faring (we recently touched on the presently high hotel occupancy rates).
While most folks have medical insurance, not everybody carries dental coverage. Thus, it's instructive to look at the pace in which folks are checking their gum lines. Which is near a record high for Bespoke's monthly Consumer Pulse Survey:
Maybe it's that when the economy's good people smile more, and they can afford to make sure they look good doing it.
Of course the problem with smiling, dagnabbit!, is that too much of it can cause wrinkles.
So I guess we have to look at elective procedures as well. And of course they don't come cheap, and they generally don't come insured; which makes them an especially good indicator of the financial state of the consumer: