The first quarter report is out from the UCLA Anderson Forecast and the economic diagnosis is “bipolar.” That means economic growth but continuing high unemployment.
The Anderson Forecast is widely respected for its analysis and predictions of the California and National economies. Recently, the Forecast was credited with being the first to predict the recession of 2001. The Forecast is a barrel of joyful monkeys dancing the techno punk remixes of classic Abba hits. Invite the Forecast over for dinner and let it regale you with stories of the time it accurately predicted the end of everything. Three weeks from tomorrow, actually.
But seriously forlks, in his “The Bipolar Economy” report, David Shulman, senior economist for the UCLA Anderson Forecast, suggests that the US government’s economic stimulus packages may have helped create the mental disorder that is our economy. Yet, the Forecast’s makes a case for GDP growth based on the assumed health of sales of business equipment and software, exports, and a revival in home construction from postwar lows.
Never fear the light, or the slither of silver lining on every cloud, “growth will be held back by declines in non-residential construction and stagnation and retraction in the state and local government sectors.” And if that doesn’t dampen the mood of joy on hearing the hark of capitalism swine singing, payroll employment is still forecasted to be 2 million jobs below the peak at the end of 2012.
When will this damn recession end, dude?!