Industry News

UCLA economist predicts U.S. will avoid the ‘R’ word

Forecast report notes disconnect in housing, jobs

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While the "R" word -- recession -- has been tossed about frequently in economic discussions, a quarterly economic forecast maintains that the word need not be a part of the dialog, at least in the short term. "Now there are countless prognosticators throwing around recession. That may be the best indicator that a recession is not coming soon," stated Ed Leamer, director of the University of California, Los Angeles, Anderson Forecast. "Better remember a recession is not measured by the frequency with which the newspapers use the 'R' word. To have an official recession commencing anytime soon, we would have to experience a rapid rise of the national unemployment rate" from a level of 4.6 percent to about 6 percent by the end of 2008 -- a loss of about 2 million jobs. Not to say there is not risk of recession -- Leamer's report states that "there really is some significant recession risk out there." While the construction sector has been losing jobs, that alone won't be enough t...