General Question

Mtl_zack's avatar

Is the US already in a depression?

Asked by Mtl_zack (6762points) October 18th, 2008

i hear news that the us will be in a depression, but isnt it already in one? do politicians use the word depressions as a scare factor?

when california was announced as “officially” being in a depression 2 months ago, everyone started freaking out. the day before, however, was perfectly fine.

where is the line where depression and not depression seperate?

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9 Answers

loser's avatar

I’m depressed…

joeysefika's avatar

Well they’re now officially in recession, which could lead to worse things like a depression in the coming months.


jrpowell's avatar

A recession is two quarters of negative GDP growth. We probably are in a recession but the numbers haven’t gotten crunched yet to officially announce it.

A depression is like a recession on steroids. What we are seeing is nothing like what a depression would look like. When GPD drops 15+ percent we can start talking about a depression.

xgunther's avatar

what’s the difference between a recession and a depression?and what signals the end of one and the beginning of the other?

xgunther's avatar

sorry john, just saw your previous response. Great answer!

gimmedat's avatar

Can’t see how we soon won’t be with the government PRINTING, not borrowing (not that that option would be any better) $830 billion to own failed banks.

Who woulda thunk we’d be living in a socialist society under a Republican administration?

jvgr's avatar

We’ve been in a functional recession for a while; the technical indicators just haven’t made it fact.
Since many other countries are affected by the financial fallout, and they are tending to blame the US for causing it, I doubt that a recession is likely. I also know the cost to us, taxpayers, is going to escalate well beyond the $850B. Some economists estimate $5 Trillion.
That may be depressing, but no to depression (except for the clinical depression this mess may cause)

stranger_in_a_strange_land's avatar

@johnpowell explanation is the textbook definition. Some areas of the US are already at this point. My region (northern New England) is approaching this. One especially worrisome point is that the Obama administration seems to be repeating what FDR did in 1936, throwing a recovery back into a depression by scaring the business community. This doesn’t mean that serious reforms aren’t necessary, but the vindictive attitude towards business leaders whose previous actions were within the letter of the law is causing many to “sit” on their capital: rising gold prices are an indicator of this.

The US must also insist that other nations pick up their fair share of the expense of the “war on terror” and international “policing”. We are now at a cusp in history similar to that of the British in the 1920’s. We cannot afford to be the unilateral superpower.

Right now our currency vs. national debt is the largest Ponzi scheme in history. I’m sure that one thing President Obama was telling the Chinese in private was “keep buying our debt or what you already hold will be worthless”.Only hyper-inflation can erase the current debt. It is too large to ever be repaid through economic growth and taxpayers would never consent to the high taxation necessary to even try.

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