GDP Drops; Youth Unemployment Up

Tyler Durden at Zero Hedge blog noted that the GDP has crashed to .6%.
In addition, the January spending date revision showed consumers are not buying much.

So…

The Atlanta Fed which models concurrent GDP, slashed its Q1 GDP from 1.4% (and 1.9% last week) to a number not even we expected: a paltry 0.6%, which would match the “polar vortexed” GDP print from Q1 2015.

Should the number drop even more, will be the lowest since Q1 of 2014 when the US economy suffered its most recent contraction of nearly -1%.

This is what the Atlanta Fed said:

“The GDPNow model forecast for real GDP growth (seasonally adjusted annual rate) in the first quarter of 2016 is 0.6 percent on March 28, down from 1.4 percent on March 24. After this morning’s personal income and outlays release from the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, the forecast for first-quarter real consumer spending growth fell from 2.5 percent to 1.8 percent. The forecast for the contribution of net exports to first-quarter real GDP growth declined from –0.26 percentage points to –0.52 percentage points following this morning’s advance report on international trade in goods from the U.S. Census Bureau.”

There is one problem with even this sharply reduced number: the downward revised Atlanta Fed’s consumer spending estimate of 1.8% is still about 0.5% higher than where the hard data says it should be, suggesting when all is said and done, Q1 GDP may be 0% or negative, especially if the long overdue (and once again delayed) inventory liquidation finally takes place.

But, wait, as they say – that’s not all.

Did you know that when you take the number of working age Americans that are officially unemployed (8.2 million) and add that number to the number of working age Americans that are considered to be “not in the labor force” (94.3 million), that gives us a grand total of 102.5 million working age Americans that do not have a job right now? I have written about this before, but today I want to focus just on Americans that are in their prime working years. When you look at only Americans that are from age 25 to age 54, 23.2 percent of them are unemployed right now.

“This group of non-employed individuals is more than 3.5 million larger than before the recession began in 2007,” writes the Republican side of the Senate Budget Committee.

Clearly, we have never recovered from the impact of the last recession.

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