The August 2018 Wall Street Journal Economic Forecast Survey was published on August 9, 2018. The headline is “Growth Seen Hitting 3% in 2018, but Risks to Outlook Mount After This Year.”
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 average forecast for growth in 2019 was 2.4%, little changed in recent months. By 2020, the average forecaster projects economic growth will slow to 1.8%. That is down from estimates earlier this year of 2%.
Trump administration officials disagree with these projections. The White House has said 3% growth or better can be sustained. Other government forecasters, including the Federal Reserve, Congressional Budget Office and International Monetary Fund all project a slowdown from the growth rate of 2018. The Fed, for example, sees 2% growth in 2020 and 1.8% growth in the long run.
As seen in the “Recession Probability” section, the average response as to the odds of another recession starting within the next 12 months was 18.3%. The individual estimates, of those who responded, ranged from 1% to 50%. For reference, the average response in July’s survey was 17.71%.
As stated in the article, the survey’s respondents were 57 academic, financial and business economists. Not every economist answered every question. The survey was conducted August 3 – August 7, 2018.
The current average forecasts among economists polled include the following:
full-year 2018: 3.0%
full-year 2019: 2.4%
full-year 2020: 1.8%
December 2018: 3.7%
December 2019: 3.6%
December 2020: 3.9%
10-Year Treasury Yield:
December 2018: 3.17%
December 2019: 3.46%
December 2020: 3.50%
December 2018: 2.5%
December 2019: 2.4%
December 2020: 2.3%
Crude Oil ($ per bbl):
for 12/31/2018: $69.91
for 12/31/2019: $67.52
for 12/31/2020: $65.66
(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