The December 2017 Wall Street Journal Economic Forecast Survey

The December 2017 Wall Street Journal Economic Forecast Survey was published on December 13, 2017.  The headline is “U.S. Economic Expansion Could Become Longest on Record.”

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.

An excerpt:

Forecasters are increasingly optimistic the U.S. economic expansion could continue beyond the 2020 presidential election, aided by Republican tax legislation that is expected to lift growth over the next several years.

The slow-but-sturdy expansion that began in mid-2009 already is the third-longest in U.S. history and, if it continues into the second half of 2019, will exceed the 10-year record set by the 1990s economic boom.

Most of the private-sector economic forecasters surveyed in recent days by The Wall Street Journal said the odds of a new recession by late 2020 were below 50%. The average probability of a recession in the next year was 14%, with the odds creeping up to 29% in two years and 43% in three years.

As seen in the “Recession Probability” section, the average response as to the odds of another recession starting within the next 12 months was 14.12%. The individual estimates, of those who responded, ranged from 0% to 33%.  For reference, the average response in November’s survey was 14.64%.

As stated in the article, the survey’s respondents were 62 academic, financial and business economists.  Not every economist answered every question.  The survey was conducted December 8-11.

The current average forecasts among economists polled include the following:


full-year 2017:  2.5%

full-year 2018:  2.6%

full-year 2019:  2.1%

full-year 2020:  2.0%

Unemployment Rate:

December 2017: 4.1%

December 2018: 3.9%

December 2019: 3.9%

December 2020: 4.2%

10-Year Treasury Yield:

December 2017: 2.42%

December 2018: 2.93%

December 2019: 3.26%

December 2020: 3.38%


December 2017:  2.0%

December 2018:  2.1%

December 2019:  2.3%

December 2020:  2.3%

Crude Oil  ($ per bbl):

for 12/31/2017: $56.25

for 12/31/2018: $56.20

for 12/31/2019: $56.30

for 12/31/2020: $57.98

(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 site 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 2667.0 as this post is written