Not everyone has read the memo it seems.
Lakshman Achuthan, co-founder of the Economic Cycle Research Institute, said on Friday that his research firm is sticking with the forecast it made in September: A new recession is inevitable, despite improvement in high-profile economic indicators, such as job creation and unemployment, and a stock market rally.
Achuthan predicts the recession will happen even without a new shock to the economy, such as a spike in oil and gas prices or a Greek sovereign debt default sparking a financial meltdown. If those things occur, he says they will simply make an inevitable recession more painful.
In fact, Achuthan said data gathered since his September forecast only confirms his view that economic growth has slowed to such a degree that a downturn is now unavoidable, likely by late summer.
"Now that we have several months of definitive hard data, this is not a forecast," he said, pointing to key measures that don't receive as much attention from the public or many economists.
Specifically, he identifies annual growth in industrial production, real personal income and spending, as well as the year-over-year change in gross domestic product, a broad measure of the nation's economic activity. That GDP reading has been stuck between 1.5% and 1.6% growth for the last three quarters, far less encouraging that the rising quarterly GDP, which is more widely reported.
"Basically, growth has flatlined," he said.Lakshman Achuthan has never been wrong.
H/T Bluegrass Pundit