Gauging the odds of a double-dip recession amid signals and slowdowns
Public sentiment says the recession isn't over. Never mind that the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), the arbiter of recessions, declared that the Great Recession of 2008 and 2009 officially ended in June 2009. An unrelenting pessimism constrains the recovery as consumers spend reluctantly while paying down debt, gripped by persistent fears of unemployment. The economy grew at a 2.5 percent annualized pace in the third quarter, according to the second estimate of real gross domestic product (GDP), a moderate improvement after two quarters of decelerating growth during the recovery. ...
High unemployment points to below-target (but still stable) inflation
The Federal Reserve has a mandate to promote price stability and full employment. Generally, ?price stability? is given a forward-looking interpretation. Policy should be conducted so that expected medium-term (two- to five-year) inflation is low and stable or, less strictly, so that expected inflation beyond the next few years is low and stable. Households and businesses, too, are generally more interested in where prices are headed than in where they have been.
How bad was it? The costs and consequences of the 2007–09 financial crisis
The 2007?09 financial crisis was associated with a huge loss of economic output and financial wealth, psychological consequences and skill atrophy from extended unemployment, an increase in government intervention, and other significant costs. Assuming the financial crisis is to blame for these associated ills, an estimate of its cost is needed to weigh against the cost of policies intended to prevent similar episodes. We conservatively estimate that 40 to 90 percent of one year's output ($6 trillion to $14 trillion, the equivalent of $50,000 to $120,000 for every U.S. household) was foregone ...
Changes in Labor Force Participation Help Explain Recent Job Gains
The U.S. labor force participation rate declined following the Great Recession to a low of 62.3 percent in 2015.
The Production Process Drives Fluctuations in Output and Uncertainty
If economic developments drive most of the changes in uncertainty—rather than the reverse—then the direct effect of a change in uncertainty on economic activity is much smaller than previous research has shown.
Complementarity and Macroeconomic Uncertainty
Macroeconomic uncertainty—the conditional volatility of the unforecastable component of a future value of a time series—shows considerable variation in the data. A typical assumption in business cycle models is that production is Cobb-Douglas. Under that assumption, this paper shows there is usually little, if any, endogenous variation in output uncertainty, and first moment shocks have similar effects in all states of the economy. When the model departs from Cobb-Douglas production and assumes capital and labor are gross complements, first-moment shocks have state-dependent effects and ...
Consumers’ and Economists’ Differing Inflation Views Can Complicate Policymaking
Economists and consumers likely think of different concepts when they consider inflation. Economists typically focus on the underlying trend that monetary policy can steer. U.S. consumers appear to think instead about unpredictable changes in prices most relevant to their regular decision-making.
U.S. Economic Rebound Uneven amid Resurgent Local COVID-19 Outbreaks
A full recovery to pre-pandemic levels of economic activity appears unlikely until the virus is under control.
Is rising unemployment an early warning of state-level recession?
Based on experience with national unemployment, analysts have viewed sharply higher state joblessness as signaling possible further deterioration. However, analyses indicate increasing state-level unemployment by itself does not indicate a recession, and that applying rule-of-thumb properties regarding recession to state economies is misguided.
Pandemic Disproportionately Affects Women, Minority Labor Force Participation
Data showing changes in labor force participation rates for several demographics reveal that women with children, especially Black women, have been disproportionately affected by the pandemic.