Magazine article Workforce Management

Beneath the Bottom

Magazine article Workforce Management

Beneath the Bottom

Article excerpt

Forecasters shaved a point off of GDP growth and added one to the unemployment rate in their October assessment of a country without credit.

DATA BANK

THE 48 FORECASTERS surveyed October 2 by the National Association for Business Economics agreed that if credit conditions do not improve by year's end, real GDP growth will drop to -1.1 in the fourth quarter of 2008 and -0.5 percent in the first quarter of 2009 before it rises to 0.9 in the second quarter. This would drive the unemployment rate up to 7 percent by midyear 2009, with job losses continuing until then. Some association forecasters predict that the unemployment rate could hit 8 percent by the end of the second quarter of next year.

Just days after forecasters sharply lowered their expectations for economic growth, Bank of America released financial statements that do not bode well for any improvement in credit conditions during the next year.

The bank announced a 68 percent plunge in its third-quarter profits, cut its dividend by half and said it would sell off $ 10 billion worth of stock. …

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