Economy Needs to Break 'Shell Shock,' Zandi Says

Share this content:
TUCSON, AZ -- Though the luncheon keynote speaker at The B-to-B Marketing Conference here predicted a return to positive job growth in early to mid 2004 yesterday, he described a bleak short-term future.


"I'm concerned that businesses aren't going to do what we expect them to do -- that they're not going to hire, that they're shell shocked by all the things that we've been through and they've been through." said chief economist and co-founder of Economy.com Mark Zandi. "It's hard to attach a probability to another terrorist attack, in fact, you can't attach a probability to it," he said. "So, if you can't attach a probability to something, what do you do? You freeze."


He then outlined a possible scenario that would include waning tax cuts and a drying up of refinance money.


"If you don't have jobs, there's nothing to fill the void," he said, "and consumers are going to start pulling back and there's no policy response to that.


"I'm concerned that it's not going to play out the way we think it's going to play out. This is the same kind of chicken-egg problem we had coming out of every recession. You're wondering to yourself, 'What's going to be the source of growth? What's going to drive us forward?' "


He said all that is needed is one company from each industry to decide that it's time to grow and expand and everyone's going to follow.


"Businesspeople are sitting there looking at each other and saying, 'Who's going to go first? Who's going to take that step?' And ultimately someone does," he said. "If they do that, everyone else has got to go with them, otherwise they're toast. Hopefully, that's what we'll see. But all the risks, I think, are still decidedly on the down side."


He also discussed foreign competition during the Q&A session.


"We're getting creamed by the Chinese," he said. "One of the reasons why manufacturing is being so hard hit is because we're losing market share very rapidly [to] the Chinese, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, India, because they peg their currency. It's not determined in the marketplace and their currencies are now substantially undervalued."


close

Next Article in Marketing Strategy

Sign up to our newsletters

Company of the Week

Since 1985, Melissa has helped thousands of companies clean, correct and complete contact data to better target and communicate with their customers. We offer a full spectrum of data quality solutions, including global address, phone, email, and name validation, identify verification - available for batch or real-time processes, in the Cloud or on-premise. Our service bureau provides dedupe, email/phone append and geographic/demographic append services for better targeting and insight. For direct mailers, Melissa offers easy-to-use address management/postal software, list hygiene services and 100s of specialty mailing lists - all with competitive pricing and excellent customer service.

Find out more here »

Career Center

Check out hundreds of exciting professional opportunities available on DMN's Career Center.  
Explore careers in digital marketing, sales, eCommerce, marketing communications, IT, data strategies, and much more. And don't forget to update your resume so employers can contact you privately about job opportunities.

>>Click Here