Tuesday, December 11, 2007

The consensus is moving from the soft vs. hard landing debate towards how severe the hard landing will be

While a few months ago analysts were still heatedly debating whether the US would experience a soft landing or a hard landing (a recession) the center of the macro debate has now clearly shifted away from soft landing versus hard landing discussion to a recognition that a hard landing is the most likely scenario; thus, increasingly now the debate is on how deep and severe the forthcoming hard landing will be.

David Rosenberg of Merrill Lynch is now clearly predicting a recession for the US economy in 2008; Jan Hatzius at Goldman Sachs is not formally speaking of a certain recession in 2008 but most of his analysis is consistent with a high likelihood of a recession in 2008; Mark Zandi of Moody’s Economy.com is also very close to a hard landing view.

And in the academic camp some of the most senior economists in the profession – Bob Shiller, Marty Feldstein, Larry Summers, Paul Krugman – are all in various degrees in the hard landing camp or very concerned about a hard landing.