National numbers out today show that the recession gently hit the breaks in the second quarter.The US Department of Commerce numbers show that the recession is deeper than estimated, but they also show that in the second quarter, conditions are betting better.
Dr. Bruce Yandle, economist at Clemson University’s Strom Thurmond Institute, says that the nations economy is clawing its way to positive growth.
“Stronger than expected, negative one percent.That is the preliminary estimate for the second quarter,” he explains.
But, Yandle says the South is still the weaker sector, “And South Carolina is one of the weaker states in the South. The most recent data on South Carolina from the Richmond Federal Reserve bank shows that the data for July was weaker than that for June for the state,” says Yandle.”
The recession is now in it’s twentieth month.
It’s the longest recession since WW II for the nation. Yandle calls it a long and painful one:
“Not quite as painful as the ’82-’83 recession, but South Carolina is at a disadvantage relative to the nation because of the large concentration of manufacturing employment. It’s our strength when we are running, it’s our weakness now in the recession.”
The economist says there may be unrealistic expectations associated with federal stimulus money helping in the short term.
“Most of that stimulus, those expenditures, will be showing up in 2010 and by the time they show up,the recession will have bottomed out–in a sense, it will be over. The question then will be how rapidly can we begin to show recovery and positive growth again. For South Carolina I think that will begin to show up the second quarter of 2010,” says Yandle.
Dr. Yandle is Dean Emeritus at Clemson University’s College of Business and Behavioral Science–and a Senior Fellow at the Strom Thurmond Institute there.