We Dodged Another Recession. 4Q 2012 GDP Was Positive. Barely. The Bare Minimum. But, Positive. So No Blizzard Related Recession.
.by Anura Guruge
I had been meaning to write about this for 11 days since the REVISED 4Q GDP for the U.S. was released on February 28, 2013 — the day that the old pope, Benedict XVI (#266) officially resigned and left the Vatican. Suffice to say I have been crazy busy with pope stuff and continue to be.
I was waiting for the number. I was lying in bed, drinking my coffee, with CNBC on. When the number came in I gagged, more out of amusement than anything else.
I am so glad that after 4 years in power the Obama White House has finally come to realize that these are THEIR NUMBERS and a little bit of steaming, if not outright cooking, is OK — even expected. What is the point of being in power if you don’t abuse it — a bit.
The initial, first-cut reading of 4Q GDP, given Hurricane Sandy, at been negative. That was not good. Two quarters of back-to-back negative GDPs and we are automatically in a recession.
I was worried that the Blizzard Nemo might do to 1Q 2013 what Sandy had done to 4Q. That would have meant a recession. Not good for any of us, politically or financially.
But, common sense obviously prevailed in D.C., particularly at the W.H. Revise the 4Q GDP to 0.1%.
Everybody is now happy. It is positive. Even if 1Q 2013 comes in negative we are in the clear — since 2Q looks ‘OK’, sequestration or no sequestration.
Stock market is doing good, though my son, the new stock market wizard (with impressive results), got me to short the market on Friday. I indulged him, as I am wont to do. What is the point of having kids if you don’t indulge them. Of course there has to be a correction soon. So he will be proved right. Question is how much money we would have made by shorting. I, being poor, didn’t ‘bet’ that much. Don’t have the money. He was betting 2.5 times more than me. I am happy. I am the one who told him, about a year ago, that he, given the way his brain works, will be good at stocks. After a shaky start he is looking impressive. I could see a Guruge Hedge Fund in the future. That would be a riot. The ONLY other Sri Lankan I know who had a hedge fund is now in jail! But, Matthew has a different pedigree.