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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


Richard Brooks
Professor of Law, Yale Law School

Todd Moss
Senior Fellow, Center for Global Development; Director, The Emerging Africa Project

Ahmed Mushfiq Mobarak
Professor of Economics

George Green
President and CEO, Hearst Magazines International

Catherine Smith
Commissioner, Connecticut Department of Economics and Community Development

Clara Miller
President and CEO, Nonprofit Finance Fund

Elizabeth H. Bradley
Professor of Public Health and Director of the Health Management Program, Yale School of Public Health



Jonathan Schechter '86

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