Econbrowser: The Stimulus Package Considered against a Deteriorating Macro Backdrop

Here are the latest CBO forecasts of the output gap and unemployment rate, as well as counterfactual gap and rate that would have taken place in the absence of the stimulus package.

Notice that the no-stimulus counterfactual output gap and unemployment rates are noticeably worse now than only a month ago (see this post). For 2010, the February counterfactual was -6.3% of GDP, now around -10%; the February counterfactual for 2010 was 8.7% unemployment, now it’s nearly 11% (I’m eyeballing the current counterfactuals off of Figures 2-1 and 2-2). The January outlook is discussed here. My guess is that that “massive” stimulus is going to look a lot less “massive” given the severity and duration of this recession.

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