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Funereal Forecast Faces KC Commerce

Tom Hoenig, President of Federal Reserve Bank of KC speaks to Chamber on 09 outlook
KCUR photo by Dan Verbeck
Tom Hoenig, President of Federal Reserve Bank of KC speaks to Chamber on 09 outlook


Kansas City, Mo. – A dark economic forecast for 2009 has been delivered to the Greater Kansas City Area Chamber of Commerce.

The doleful message comes from Mid America Regional Council analyst Frank Lenk who put together two scenarios for 2009. The first would see a loss of ten thousand job. And, in Lenk's words,
In scenario two we lose 30 thousand jobs and..actually this employment path is very similar to the employment path we experienced, during the 2000-2001 (recession)..it took us 5 years from beginning to end to get us back to where we were in two thousand.
A chamber publication further refines the worst case job loss next year at 34 thousand. That's nearly identical to the regional loss in aftermath of the 2 thousand one recession.And the projected level of job loss would be about what was experienced in the region during the 1982-83 recession. During the previous four quarters of regional history, the Gross Regional Product is estimated to have grown an overage of 1.3 percent. In the sunniest forecast-scenario for 09, the GRP would grow at less than one percent. In the grimmer of the two outlooks, the rate of decline is more severe and would last longer, so the area economy winds up being one-half of one percent smaller at end of 2009 than at end of this year. Lenk reminds he's been wrong before, predicting economic growth for this year that never happened.

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