San José, CA – On June 9, Spain and the European Union made an agreement to bail out Spain’s troubled banking sector. This agreement means Spain is the fourth country (along with Portugal, Ireland and Greece) in the eurozone to have to take a bailout.
San José, CA – The United States is now in its longest recession since the Great Depression of the 1930s. At the end of April, the recession that officially began in December of 2007 reached 17 months in length, passing the deep 1981-82 and 1974-75 recessions. The economy has lost almost 6 million jobs, or 4.1% of total jobs at the beginning of the recession, the worst downturn since the recession of 1948. Unemployment in the African American community hit a depression-level 15% in April, while unemployment for Asian Americans has risen the fastest, more than doubling over the last year.
In the six months since the financial crisis exploded with the collapse of New York investment bank Lehman Brothers, the world economy has been gripped by the greatest economic crisis since the Great Depression of the 1930s. U.S. and European banks have admitted a trillion dollars in losses, while the banking system of Iceland totally collapsed. Almost all of the major economies of the world, with the exception of China, have started to contract, with millions of workers losing their jobs and businesses going bankrupt right and left. Hardest hit for now are the new capitalist economies of eastern Europe, who are being slammed by their dependence on borrowing from foreign bankers, falling exports and plunging currencies.
San José, CA – On Jan. 7, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimated that the federal budget deficit for this fiscal year (October 2008 to September 2009) would be $1.2 trillion. But the CBO estimate only counted the $68 billion approved for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, when they actually cost more than $186 billion in 2008. Given that the wars will cost at least another $100 billion, the federal budget deficit will be $1.3 trillion, or even more if the economy worsens more than expected. This estimated deficit is almost 10% of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP), which measures the value of all the goods and services* produced in the United States in a year, and would be the biggest deficit since World War II.