Polling the experts: In their own words (the recovery and the stimulus)

Posted: October 4, 2012 in economy
Tags: , ,

THIS week’s print edition highlights some results from our survey of top economists in advance of America’s presidential election. Due to space constraints, many entertaining, enlightening, and befuddling comments from the nation’s dismal scientists could not be included in the body of the article. Fortunately, the IT revolution, if it has given us nothing else, allows us to share these insights with the general public. This post, the first of a series, will feature economists’ thoughts on the slow recovery and the 2009 stimulus bill.On the recovery:“We don’t know”“Fear of high taxes in short run and, because of deficits, in the long run as well.”“Policy uncertainty primarily about fiscal cliff and debt ceiling rather than a more general malaise”“We could have overcome the headwinds (eurozone crisis, need for de-leveraging after financial crisis as predicted by Reinhart-Rogoff) if we had been following a sensible fiscal policy. A sensible fiscal policy would have meant simultaneously locking in a return to fiscal responsibility (featuring an increase in the retirement age for social security and many other measures well-known to economists but very unpopular politically) and continuing short-term fiscal stimulus (such as Obama’s reduction in payroll taxes, infrastructure spending, and money for states to stopping laying off teachers, policemen, construction workers …

via Economic Crisis http://www.economist.com/blogs/freeexchange/2012/10/polling-experts-0?fsrc=rss

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