Breaking a record is almost always good — except when it comes to the deficit. The federal deficit is set to reach its highest figure ever: $1.65 trillion for this fiscal year. That would make it more than 10 percent of the toal economy, the highest level since 1945. And that is just for the current year. In total, the national debt — the cumulative total of deficits since the beginning of the Republic — is set to grow from $14 trillion today to $16.7 trillion by September 30, 2012. Lawmakers will begin debating $61 billion in budget cuts for the remaining months of this fiscal year today, but what will those cuts mean for average Americans?
Estimates for today's second quarter GDP numbers will show a decline of somewhere between one percent and 1.5 percent. That’s a sharp improvement – or at least a smaller worsening – after the 6.4 percent decline earlier in the year. Is the worst behind us? With us to help navigate the stormy waters of our global economy is Gus Faucher, director of Macroeconomics at Moody’s Economy.Com.
Home price indexes, GDPs and jobless claim numbers are all coming in this week. Sure, the numbers look good, but what does it all mean in practical terms? Can the worst of the economic downturn really be behind us? We speak with Gus Faucher, director of macroeconomics at Moody’s Economy.com, and Andrew Walker, who covers economics for the BBC, to interpret these fuzzy economic indicators.