The October Wall Street Journal Economic Forecast Survey was published on October 8, 2015. The headline is “WSJ Survey: Economists See U.S. on Cusp of ‘Full’ Employment,” WSJ Survey Says.”
I found numerous items to be notable – although I don’t necessarily agree with them – both within the article and in the “Economist Q&A” section.
The recession that began in December 2007 propelled the jobless rate to 10% and put more than 15 million Americans out of work. As recently as last year, Federal Reserve officials believed that even by the end of 2016, unemployment wouldn’t be as low as it is now—5.1% in September.
Even as the unemployment rate has fallen in recent years, other signs of weakness have lingered. In particular, the share of Americans participating in the workforce declined. That rate declined in September to 62.4%, the lowest share since 1977, a period when women were far less likely to work.
As seen in the “Recession Probability” section, the average response as to the odds of another recession starting within the next 12 months was 15.34%; the average response in September’s survey was 9.97%.
The current average forecasts among economists polled include the following:
full-year 2015: 2.3%
full-year 2016: 2.7%
full-year 2017: 2.5%
December 2015: 5.0%
December 2016: 4.7%
December 2017: 4.6%
10-Year Treasury Yield:
December 2015: 2.33%
December 2016: 2.93%
December 2017: 3.37%
December 2015: .8%
December 2016: 2.1%
December 2017: 2.3%
Crude Oil ($ per bbl):
for 12/31/2015: $47.38
for 12/31/2016: $54.68
(note: I highlight this WSJ Economic Forecast survey each month; commentary on past surveys can be found under the “Economic Forecasts” category)
I post various economic forecasts because I believe they should be carefully monitored. However, as those familiar with this blog are aware, I do not necessarily agree with many of the consensus estimates and much of the commentary in these forecast surveys.
The Special Note summarizes my overall thoughts about our economic situation
SPX at 2013.43 as post is written