You better get ready, because there are a whole host of signs that economic trouble is on the horizon. U.S. economic growth slipped into negative territory during the fourth quarter of 2012. That was the first time that has happened in more than three years. Several important measures of manufacturing activity have also contracted in recent weeks, and consumer confidence is way down. There is a tremendous amount of economic pessimism in the air right now, and Americans are pulling enormous amounts of money out of our banks and they are buying up precious metals at unprecedented rates. Meanwhile, our “leaders” seem very confused about what is happening. For example, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid continues to insist that we are “in a recovery“, and some other Democrats are calling the latest GDP numbers “the best-looking contraction in U.S. GDP you’ll ever see“. On the other hand, the Federal Reserve says that economic growth has “paused” in recent months, and therefore a continuation of their latest quantitative easing scheme is necessary. Well, no matter how hard any of them try to spin the numbers, there is no way that they are going to get them to look good. Despite four years of outrageous “stimulus” spending by the federal government, despite four years of record low interest rates, and despite four years of unprecedentedmoney printing by the Federal Reserve, the U.S. economy continues to perform miserably. Later this year the federal government will probably finally acknowledge that we have entered another recession, even though the truth is that if the federal government used honest numbers they would indicate that we are already in one. In any event, nobody should have ever expected that our debt-fueled prosperity would last forever. When the debt bubble that we have been living in completely bursts, a “recession” will be the least of our worries.
Hopefully this little stretch of false economic hope that we have been living in will last for a little while longer. I don’t think that too many people are very eager to repeat the horrible economic pain that we experienced back in 2008 and 2009. Unfortunately, we never fully recovered from that last downturn and now the incredibly foolish decisions that our “leaders” continue to make have made another major economic downturn inevitable.
Personally, I would very much prefer for 2013 to be a year of peace and prosperity for America. But at this point there appears to be a great deal of downward momentum for the economy.
The following are 15 signs that you better get prepared for the Obama recession of 2013…
#1 The mainstream media was absolutely shocked when it was announced that U.S. GDP actually contracted at an annual rate of 0.1 percent during the fourth quarter of 2012. This was the first contraction that the official numbers have shown in more than three years. But of course the truth is that the official numbers always make things appear better than they really are. According to John Williams of shadowstats.com, U.S. GDP growth has actually been continuously negative all the way back to 2005 once you account “for distortions in government inflation usage and methodological changes that have resulted in a built-in upside bias to official reporting.”
#2 For the entire year of 2012, official U.S. GDP growth was only about 1.5%. According to Art Cashin, every time economic growth has fallen that low (below 2 percent annually) the U.S. economy has alwaysended up going into a recession.
#3 According to the Conference Board, consumer confidence in the United States has hit its lowest level in more than a year.
#4 For the week ending January 26th, initial claims for unemployment rose to 368,000. In future weeks, watch to see if it goes above 400,000. If we hit that level, that will be a sign of real trouble for the economy.