The March 2018 Wall Street Journal Economic Forecast Survey

The March 2018 Wall Street Journal Economic Forecast Survey was published on March 15, 2018.  The headline is “WSJ Survey:  Economists See Steeper Fed Rate Path, Stronger Inflation.”

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:

The economy grew 2.5% in the fourth quarter from a year earlier, well above the postrecession annual average of 1.9%.

Economists in the latest survey saw annual inflation rising to 2.1% in the fourth quarter of 2018 and remaining relatively stable thereafter.

As seen in the “Recession Probability” section, the average response as to the odds of another recession starting within the next 12 months was 13.66%. The individual estimates, of those who responded, ranged from 0% to 35%.  For reference, the average response in February’s survey was 13.97%.

As stated in the article, the survey’s respondents were 59 academic, financial and business economists.  Not every economist answered every question.  The survey was conducted March 9 – March 13, 2018.

The current average forecasts among economists polled include the following:


full-year 2018:  2.9%

full-year 2019:  2.4%

full-year 2020:  1.9%

Unemployment Rate:

December 2018: 3.7%

December 2019: 3.7%

December 2020: 4.0%

10-Year Treasury Yield:

December 2018: 3.23%

December 2019: 3.47%

December 2020: 3.58%


December 2018:  2.3%

December 2019:  2.3%

December 2020:  2.3%

Crude Oil  ($ per bbl):

for 12/31/2018: $60.98

for 12/31/2019: $59.56

for 12/31/2020: $59.25

(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 2746.74 as this post is written