Recession close to a ‘sure thing’

America’s downgrade is a sideshow, say bearish commentators. The sell-off in equities actually reflects something much more serious.

Recession close to a ‘sure thing’
SG's Albert Edwards says the lesson from the crisis is not to put academics like Ben Bernanke in charge

Albert Edwards, Societe Generale’s gloomy global strategist, fired off a strongly worded weekly email to clients yesterday, arguing that the global economy might already be in recession and dismissing “perpetually bullish analysts” as “diehard happy clappies”.

Even by Edwards’ standards, the five-page note is harsh and uncompromising, accusing the US Federal Reserve and the Bank of England of being “wholly complicit” in perpetrating “daylight robbery” on the middle classes, and implying that riots in the...

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