Martin Feldstein: U.S. Slipping Into Recession

Martin Feldstein, chief of National Bureau of Economic Research, stated that the U.S. economy likely peaked in December or January, and is now slipping into a recession:

"I think we’re heading for a recession," said at the Reuters Investment Outlook Summit in New York. He stressed that he was speaking from his personal opinion, not that of the NBER, the unofficial arbiter of U.S. recessions."My sense is that the risk to overall GDP growth over the next six months is still very significant," he added.

The Cambridge, Massachusetts-based NBER has not declared a recession and is unlikely to do so for many months. Feldstein, who is also an economics professor at Harvard University in Cambridge, will step down from his NBER post at the end of the month."

Feldstein also noted that the current downturn was different from the norm because it was triggered by the housing slump rather than tightening of U.S. interest rates. "We have fundamental uncertainty about what is going to happen with house prices," Feldstein said. He also stated  it was conceivable the United States could go through
several years of higher-than-normal inflation along with subpar growth,
creating a mild form of the stagflation that plagued the country in the
late 1970s.

Considering that Feldstein is retiring, he is tipping his hand on the NBER call.


Jimmy P., are you going to make me wait for my BladerRunner discs, or are you going to throw in the towel and admit its all over?


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NBER chief: U.S. slipping into recession, U.S. economy peaked in Dec/Jan
Emily Kaiser and Ros Krasny
Reuters, June 10, 2008

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