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On the Other Hand

What’s happening to the global economy? Dozens of equity markets have fallen into bear territory. There’s solid job growth in the U.S., but China is struggling to avoid a hard landing. The Fed is confident enough to raise interest rates, but oil prices have crashed.

The atmosphere is one of profound uncertainty. “What makes these falling prices unnerving,” the New York Times says, “is that it’s hard to tell a simple story about what is driving them.”

What’s the worst-case scenario? “We might be at the edge of a global recession,” said Citibank’s Christian Schulz on Bloomberg. In the fourth quarter of 2015, global growth approached the 2% mark—and central banks have few options remaining. “It’s a vulnerable situation.”

The drop in equity markets may simply be a needed correction, the Economist noted. But, the magazine wrote elsewhere, “whether the market gyrations are rooted firmly in fundamentals or not, they could themselves be a source of economic instability…. A recession, after all, is nothing more than a rut of self-ratifying pessimism.”

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Contributors


Beth Comstock
Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer, GE

Sarena Lin
Corporate Vice President for Strategy and Business Development, Cargill

Denise Landry
Senior Vice President and Chief Quality Officer, Emergent BioSolutions

Professor Robert Shiller
Robert J. Shiller
Sterling Professor of Economics, Yale University


Tom Zacharias
Chief Operating Officer, W.P. Carey Inc.

Sostena Romano
Executive Director, HealthRight

Robert Bettigole '83

Marissa D. King
Associate Professor of Organizational Behavior

Antonio Lucio
Global Chief Marketing, Strategy, and Corporate Development Officer, Visa Inc.; Board of Advisors, Yale Center for Customer Insights

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