How We Missed Signs Of A Slowdown

Deep into last fall, many economists argued the boom isn't over. Ahem. How to avoid missing the signs the next time things look too good

It was all going so well.

Joblessness was at its lowest level in 30 years. Prices were in check. Productivity had surged to levels not seen since the 1960s. Early last year the economy was on a luxury cruise ordering umbrella drinks. Conditions seemed so perfect that a new, more cocky breed of economist was arguing that the New Economy had changed history. Recession? A relic. Despite falling stock prices, this optimism continued into autumn, with one prestigious group of business economists predicting "solid growth ahead with no end to the expansion."

And then it happened. After the economy roared...

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