Some of the most powerful members of the financial community think the American economy is going to be just fine.
That was the consensus reached by an elite group of about 90 "hedge fund managers, corporate leaders, activists, buyout specialists, real estate titans, private equity folk and venture capitalists" assembled by Byron Wien, Blackstone Advisory Partners vice chairman, for his annual series of lunches in the Hamptons in August.
"Investors almost universally believed that all of the threatening geopolitical problems would somehow work themselves out favorably without significantly disturbing the United States economy or its financial markets," Wien wrote in a monthly commentary letter released Thursday night.
"I was struck by the optimism about the outlook for the U.S. in the face of the unsettled conditions around the world," Wien added, noting turmoil in the Middle East, economic problems in Europe and tensions in Ukraine.
Wien himself appeared more cautious.
"I wondered if our economy could continue to thrive in the face of so many problems elsewhere," he wrote. "On top of that you had the threat of cyberwarfare and terrorism. Our political process seems unable to respond to the challenges confronting the U.S. and inequality is a growing problem. Can America move ahead economically at a satisfactory job-producing pace with all these conditions in front of us?"