Net Net: Promoting innovation and managing change
Net Net: Promoting innovation and managing change

Why We're Likely in a Recession

Recession-themed newsprint cuttings

It's almost a certainty that we're already in a recession.

The latest sign comes from the dismal consumer confidence number, which is at its lowest since April of 2009.

Mike Shedlock of SitkaPacific Capital Management points to one reason why consumer confidence is so low: Fear of layoffs is at a record high, according to the latest Gallup poll.

American workers' concerns about various job-related cutbacks have returned to the record highs seen in 2009, after improving slightly in 2010. In terms of the most significant employment risk measured, three in ten workers currently say they are worried they could soon be laid off, similar to the 31 percent seen in August 2009 but double the level recorded in August 2008 and for several years prior.

Separately, 30 percent of workers say they are worried their hours will soon be cut back, and 33 percent worry their wages will be reduced. An even larger number, 44 percent, worry their benefits will be reduced, making this the most prevalent job-related concern.

Don't expect much of a boost from back to school sales or even holiday sales when a third of the workforce thinks their next paycheck might be their last.

It will take some time before we're officially declared to be in a recession. But I believe that it is all but inevitable.


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