Saturday, October 11, 2008

Economy 1980-1982

Here are some indication of the state of the economy during 1982:

Population: 231,664,458
Life Expectancy: 74.5
Dow Jones High: 1070
Low: 776
Federal Spending: 745.76 billion
Federal Debt: 1137.3 billion
Inflation: 6%
Consumer Price Index: 96.5
Unemployment: 7.6%

The economy is not looking very good for this year, but it is considerably better than the statistics of 1980. Inflation has gone down almost 50%, but unemployment has stayed about the same. The consumer confidence index shows that in October 1982 it was down to 54.1. 1980 show a low of 50.1, so things have gotten better in two years, but people are still not comfortable.

The recession seems to have lasted from 1980-1982. The GDP of the early 80s fluctuated up and down creating uncertainty. There was a a lot difficultly keeping it steady which was one reason the economy led to a recession. By the second quarter of 1980 the GDP actually drops about 5 billion, with another drop the next quarter of 9 billion. This pattern repeats itself all through 1981 and 1982. Investment purchases also went way down in 1982. A graph I saw showed a drop of about 100 billion dollars in investment purchases. In 1983 and 1984 they rose again though.

The cause of this recession is hard to find on the internet. There are a lot of biases politically and it has been blamed on Jimmy Carter as well as Ronald Regan. According to my research the recession started going south in 1979, before Regan became president. There were lots of tax cuts and reworking of the budget with Regan. You could say it was his fault because the worst happened while he was president, or was that because of Carter's leftovers? Regan did pull us out of the recession though.

When researching the economy for 1982 I got a lot of headlines saying the recession of 1980-1982. There are a lot facts about how this was a bad time for inflation, unemployment, lack of consumer spending, and investment. This makes me think that maybe it got better in the next two years. These two years almost mirror what is going on with the economy in 2008 in the present as well. Can we predict this recession will get better by 2010?

Source: Economic Indicators,
Consumer Confidence Index,
US Recession of 1980-1982

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