Recession Watch: Uh Oh, It's Getting Safer to Predict One

There’s now plenty of company on the recession-prediction side of the fence, so the depressing forecasts are coming more frequently. Most forecasters are still casting the news in the best possible light, of course (so as not to be viewed as nabobs of negativity), but the consensus is building.

  • The Congressional Budget Office allows that “recession risk” is increasing (but then hurriedly notes that “most analysts” don’t expect one).
  • Chapman University says that “some of the fundamentals that helped prop up the economy in 2007 are beginning to look shaky,” and expects a “shallow” recession in the “first half” of 2008.  [beginning to look shaky? What economic show have they been watching?]

Meanwhile, in the tell-it-like-it-more-like-it-is department, is projecting that national housing prices will drop 15% from peak to trough, with some areas dropping 30%. Further, projects that prices will drop through 2009 (two years from now) and won’t begin to recover meaningfully until 2010.

At SAI, we’ve been worried about a recession–and its potential impact on advertising and technology spending–since last July. Full timeline after jump.

Recession Timeline

Dec 6   Comcast Says Economy Has Weakened, and Financial advertisers cut spend
Dec 5   Merrill Lynch Predicts Recession
Nov 30   “Helicopter Ben” Rushes to the Rescue

Nov 20   How Bad Could This Market Crash Get? Very.
Nov 19:  Monday Morning’s marvellous Economic News
Nov 16:   Recession Watch: We’re Probably Already In One

Nov 16:   JC Penney cuts outlook, blames economy and housing.
Nov 13:   Echostar says US Already In a Recession
Nov 8:     Toll Brothers says Oct Worse Than Sept, Bernanke cautious, LOOK whiffs

Nov 2:     Mortgage plague spreads, $96 oil
Oct 30:    $93 oil, falling houses, UBS blows up
Oct 25:    Merrill blows up, Caterpillar says weakness spreading, BOFA whacks 3,000
Oct 23:    Omnicom Fine Q3, but New York Times sees October weakness in retail ads
Oct 19:    WPP Misses targets, Wachovia and BOFA bomb, $90 oil
Oct 18:    Yahoo and then Google report strong quarters, no evidence of slowdown.
Oct 17:    Thornburg, mortgage-banker to rich people, bombs: not just sub-prime problem
Oct 15:    Beazer, Countrywide, Tax receipts down to “recession levels.”
Oct 12:    Spending by Top 10 Web Advertisers Drops in Sept vs. Aug?

Sep 28:    News Corp’s Fox Interactive Media misses sales targets in July/August
Sep 28:    Housing gets even worse.
Sep 20:    Google reports anecdotal advertiser cutbacks from mortgage crisis (though not on Google)
Sep 19:    CBS and Viacom say they see no signs of advertiser cutbacks
Sep 18:    NY VC Fred Wilson: The Coming Downturn

Sep 14:    First online ad estimate cut for mortgage crisis.
Sep 13:    Countrywide gets life support, but we still worry about online ads.
Sep 12:   Ad network Burst Media reports cancellations from “budget constraints”
Sep 11:    Mortgage giant Countrywide fires 12,000, WaMu sees “perfect storm”
Sep 11:    TNS reports two quarters of decline in US ads–first since 2001.
Sep 10:   Online mortgage ads remain strong in August: Good sign or false signal?

Sep 6:      Countrywide crumble and stock foreshadows Yahoo, Google, et al?
Sep 5:      OpCo “cautiously optimistic” about mortgage mess.  We’re cautiously pessimistic.

Aug 30:    How Bad Could Mortgage Mess Get for Google, Yahoo, et al
Aug 29:    Will mortgage crisis hurt web ads?  Sure looks that way.
Aug 29:    Bankrate CEO call provides more reason to worry about online ads.
Aug 27:    Cracks in Manhattan’s commercial real-estate market?
Aug 22:    JupiterMedia CEO Meckler says every Internet company now for sale.

Aug 17:    Dear Internet Industry: Brace for harder times
Aug 17:    What happens to Yahoo, Google, et al, in recessions?
Aug 16:    About that crashing stock market
Aug 3:      Bankrate confirms online ad market strong, print weak
Aug 1:      The market’s crashing: Are you recession proof?

July 20:    Google blows up the stock market


Sep 18:      NY VC Fred Wilson: The Coming Downturn
Aug 17:     Dear Internet Industry: Brace for harder times
Aug 17:     What happens to Yahoo, Google, et al, in recessions?
Aug 1:       The market’s crashing: Are you recession proof?

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