Whether or not the U.S. economy is in a recession is debatable, but one thing is clear: Wall Street is bracing for the worst.
Most recently, billionaire hedge fund trader Paul Tudor Jones has sounded the alarm, saying the U.S. economy has already entered or is about to enter into a recession. He blames the Federal Reserve for catching interest rate fever in the face of high inflation.
Jones detailed to CNBC the recession risks that he has observed, saying:
“I don’t know whether it started now, or it started two months ago. We always find out, and we are always surprised when a recession officially starts, but I’m assuming we are going to go into one.”
Whether a formal recession has begun is unclear. On the one hand, there has been an economic contraction for two straight quarters, with GDP falling in Q1 and Q2 of 2022. In that case, a recession would have formally begun in July.
However, the National Bureau of Economic Research, which makes the official call on a recession, has yet to say so. With solid U.S. employment figures, including an unemployment rate of 3.6%, which is low by historical standards, the bureau may be waiting for the final shoe to drop. But that has not stopped Wall Street experts from claiming one.
Jones explained recessions tend to last for the better part of a year or 300 days. And while the S&P 500 index, a broad gauge of the stock market, is down over 25% year-to-date, he says stocks have further to fall before they reach a bottom.
The founder and CEO of Tudor Investment Corp, Jones knows a thing or two about market crashes. He foresaw Black Monday, the market meltdown of 1987 in which the Dow Jones Industry Average lost more than one-fifth of its value.
He is not alone in his doom-and-gloom forecast.
JP Morgan CEO Jamie Dimon has also issued a warning, forecasting that the U.S. and global economy are headed for a recession by mid-2023. Telling CNBC that this is “serious stuff,” he pointed to headwinds such as high inflation, higher-than-anticipated interest rates, and the prolonged war in Ukraine.
However, Dimon also sees a silver lining — the consumer. He says the consumer is holding up better now than they did during the 2008 financial crisis. Not willing to predict the severity or length of any impending recession, Dimon only tells people to “be prepared.”
For his part, the president is at odds with the Wall Street experts and believes the chance of a recession is only “very slight.” Meanwhile, the writing appears to be on the wall and may become clear sooner than later.
Third-quarter GDP is set to be released on October 27, 2022, at 8:30 a.m. EDT.