Highlights of the report include:
- Year-old recession will continue for another six months, making it one of the longest and most severe in post-war history.
- Key underpinnings of the recovery in the second half of 2009 will be federal economic stimulus and resolution of the financial crisis.
- Major risks to the economy include uncertainty about the extent of bad investments in mortgage and other securities.
- Payroll losses will average 218,200 jobs per month in the first six months of the year, slowing to 41,700 jobs per month in the second half of 2009.
- Unemployment rate will rise to 8.2 percent in the second half of the year.
- Turnaround in the labor market will be later than that of the overall economy, as employers wait for evidence of growth.
- Fed will maintain historic low target for key interest rate before raising it toward the end of 2009.
- Inflation will be relatively low over the year, and core inflation will slow.
- Central bank is widely expected to pursue financial lending and monetary stimulus initiatives.
- Financial crisis is considered the most serious since the 1930s, while the global economic downturn compares to that of 1982.
- Averting a worse downturn will depend critically on stimulative policies, with more fiscal stimulus needed in industrial and developing countries.
- Emerging markets will continue to grow but at a much slower pace, contradicting the idea that they are independent from the industrial countries.