The White House grapples with recession fears as grim economic news looms

WASHINGTON — White House officials have increasingly sought to combat the narrative that the United States is on the brink of a recession as it tries to get out before the dismal economic data expected on Thursday.

White House officials have covered this up ether informed reporters last week, published blog posts and to urge the proxies to reinforce their message as they seek to highlight areas of strength in the economy amid mounting Republican attacks.

“We’re not going to go into a recession,” Biden told reporters Monday.

The White House on Wednesday acknowledged that inflation is putting pressure on consumers, but they pointed it out strong employment growth as a hopeful sign for the economy. A senior administration official said one of their concerns is that fears of a recession will prompt consumers to retreat, creating a “negative self-fulfilling prophecy” that has prompted the White House to try to address recession concerns before the Release of data pushing back economic growth will be released on Thursday.

“I wouldn’t say it’s my biggest concern, but I think it explains why we think it’s important to get out there those few days before the GDP report and make sure people have a clear understanding that that’s also when it’s the case is if tomorrow you have a negative number we are and have not been in a recession,” the official said.

Economic analysts are awaiting the release of data Thursday showing an overall contraction in gross domestic product for the second straight quarter, one of several measures used in the past to signal the US economy is entering a recession. Earlier this week, data showed that consumer confidence fell to its lowest level in more than a year over the past month.

The Federal Reserve announced on Wednesday that it would raise interest rates by 0.75% to tackle rising inflation, but Fed Chair Jerome Powell said he doesn’t think the US is currently in a recession.

“I don’t think the US is in a recession right now and that’s because there are too many areas of the economy that are doing too well,” he said said.

For months, White House officials have worried about the impact the economy could have on Democrats’ chances of retaining control of Congress, trying to land on a message that will resonate with voters, one said person close to the White House asked not to be named when speaking about internal White House affairs.

The recent setback surrounding a recession is indicative of these broader concerns and efforts, the person said.

Signs that the US may be headed for recession also weigh on Democrats just over three months before the midterm elections. Biden has said he and other senior government officials will step up their trips ahead of the midterms to argue that their plan to improve the economy is better than the alternative should Republicans take control of Congress next year.

“We need to remind people what life is going to be like for American families, especially if Republicans get some of that power back, and that comes into play by contrasting and making clear where the Democrats are on the economy and where Republicans stand,” Democratic communications strategist Adrienne Elrod said.

As part of the White House push this week, officials have attempted to highlight areas of the economy they believe remain strong. Rather, the White House says the US is transitioning to a slower-growth economy, pointing to low unemployment, consumer spending that “remains solid”, loan and mortgage defaults at low levels, and fiscal balance sheets that “remain broadly in good shape.” , Brian Deese, Biden’s chief economic adviser, said.

“The body of economic data is consistent with this type of transition and not a recession,” he said during a briefing with reporters on Tuesday.

Biden continued his economic message even while in isolation with Covid this week, hosting virtual events promoting his administration’s work to bring down gas prices and the importance of Congress passing legislation to reduce gas prices Strengthening US computer chip manufacturing.

“The employment rate is still one of the lowest we’ve had in history, it’s in the 3.6 range, we still find ourselves with people investing and I hope to go from that rapid growth to steady one transition to growth,” he said. We’ll see some coming down. But I don’t think we’re going to see a recession, God willing.”

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen made a similar case on NBC’s Meet the Press on Sunday, saying “we’re not in a recession now” and even if GDP growth slows down, “we shouldn’t characterize it as a recession.”

The technical classification of a recession is provided by the National Bureau of Economic Research, a private, nonpartisan research group that looks at a range of data and usually makes a classification long after a recession has started. But a second quarter of slowing GDP growth will likely give Republicans fodder to try to argue that the US is already in a recession.

Whether or not the country is technically in recession may be irrelevant to voters majority of which have said in several surveys that they believe the country is already in recession.

According to a poll by more than, 15 percent of them said their region is already in recession, and 60 percent said they expect a recession in their main region by the end of next year 750 CEOs worldwide surveyed by the Conference Board in May.

It’s a reality the White House has acknowledged and said it’s continuing to try to address.

“But from the president’s perspective, and that technical issue aside, the most important economic issue is whether working people and middle-class families have more breathing room,” Deese said. “They have more job opportunities, their wages are rising at a steady rate, and they can afford the important things in life.”

https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/white-house-pushes-back-recession-fears-dismal-economic-news-looms-rcna40280 The White House grapples with recession fears as grim economic news looms

Fry Electronics Team

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