Predicting the Start and End of the Great Recession, and Trying to Sell Books

by Mike Kimel

Predicting the Start and End of the Great Recession, and Trying to Sell Books
Cross posted at the Presimetrics Blog.

No doubt you’ve heard that the NBER put the endpoint to the last recession in June of 2009. I wonder if anyone forecasted that. Oh yeah, back in December of 2008 I said I expected the recession to end in the first half of ’09. (Yes, I know, the post was put up in early January, but I sent it in a few days before the end of the year, as is plainly evident if you read the comments to that post.) I think I made that call only a few weeks after Larry Kudlow stopped talking about the Goldilocks Economy and started acknowledging there was trouble. And incidentally, I also noted in a number of posts that the recovery would be unimpressive when it did arrive.

In the spirit of tooting my horn a bit (my wife tells me I don’t do it nearly enough), I would also note that I noted that the economy was in recession as early as March of ’08, and that the recession was a bit different from most earlier recessions. In fact, at about the same time, I also prebutted some of the arguments that conservatives and Austrians might make as they try to take credit for predicting the mess themselves.

Now, granted, I misunderestimated the inanity of the previous and the current administrations’ responses to the mess, and thus the severity of the recession, but I also recognized that recession really was not going to be the end of the world and that it would take mismanagement for it to end up being considered truly awful. For instance, the 73 – 75 recession, could have been alleviated with decent leadership, but it was going to be a deep recession no matter what. By contrast, this latest downturn could have been like early 90s fall-out from the S&L crisis except for the stupendously poor decisions made by those running the show. Yeah, I know, plenty of people who didn’t see it coming and then didn’t see it ending don’t agree with this last paragraph… so I’m going to avoid some grief by not telling you (right at this moment, anyhow) where the economy is going from here, and when.

Other recession-related predictions I got right… I think spotting the end game for the bail-out early on counts for something. And while its not recession-related, I did note something a few times that has some bearing now, which is that sooner or later even the conservatives who couldn’t stop singing Karzai’s praises would conclude he was a corrupt kleptocrat.

So… since I’ve got a book to sell, I have to ask – where’s my media exposure? Why am I not on tv? Doesn’t getting it righter than the average bear count for something? I can be loud and obnoxious if I have to. And the book is quite good if I say so myself,, and pretty original to boot.