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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


Christine Barton
Senior Partner, Boston Consulting Group


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

Reed E. Hundt
Former Chairman, Federal Communications Commission; Senior Advisor, Telecommunications and Technology, McKinsey & Company; Vice Chairman, Frontline Wireless; Graduate, Yale College and Yale Law School; Member, Yale SOM Board of Advisors

Edieal J. Pinker
Professor of Operations Research and Professor of Health Policy

Paul Kennedy
J. Richardson Dilworth Professor of History, Yale University; Author, The Rise and Fall of the Great Powers

Ibrahim Mayaki
CEO, New Partnership for Africa's Development

President and Co-Founder, Meehan Combs
Eli Combs
President and Co-Founder, Meehan Combs

Rajesh Subramaniam
EVP, Global Marketing and Communications, FedEx Services

Ellen Shuman
Founder and Managing Partner, Edgehill Endowment Partners

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