A one-page summary is posted as soon as any new numbers are released. Formatted for your desktop or smart phone, it is a quick and quotable reference -- so that you always have a concise and accurate overview of the economy. The Current Economic Digest reflects the overarching relationships in macroeconomics: the relationships among unemployment, growth, money supply, confidence, interest rates, and prices.
Aa we feared in last month’s talking points, the pandemic and inept responses from the Trump government have together created an economic shock from which a depression is now inevitable. The path to a depression is now official. The National Bureau of Economic Research has declared that the economy has been in a recession since February. This Current Economic Digest shows a negative 33 percent growth in real GDP in the second quarter of 2020. The last time real GDP growth fell like this was 1932 (-12.89%) -- and then 1946 (-11.60%). The median growth rate since the Great Depression was 3.12 percent.
That the economy is on such a dismal track is supported by nearly every number and ratio that is derived from national accounts. Ours is a consumer economy, and consumer spending began to slip in the first quarter of 2020. Consumer confidence is now off 30%; the leading economic index is down 8%; employment is off 15 million; in response the treasury was obliged to throw a new $4 trillion into the economy (M2). An adverse change in any one of these indicators is significant. Adverse changes in all of them together forebode a serious threat to economic welfare.