Moody’s Zandi: Economy "Off and Running" No Matter Who Is Elected

Tuesday, 06 Nov 2012 01:20 PM

By John Morgan

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The broad path of economic recovery is going to be the same regardless of who wins the presidential election, according to Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody’s Analytics.

Both the Democrats under Barack Obama or the Republicans under Mitt Romney would have a lot to lose if the nation goes over a fiscal cliff, he told Yahoo.

“Whoever wins has to address key fiscal issues,” Zandi said. “Whoever wins will address those about the same way.”

Editor's Note: Economist Warns: 50% Unemployment, 100% Inflation Possible

He acknowledged Romney would be likely to place more emphasis on spending cuts and reforming entitlement programs than Obama would, while Obama would be likely to focus on increasing taxes on upper income households in addition to spending cuts.

The partisanship of both men is overstated, according to Zandi, and their different philosophies matter more in the long run, not in the next two to four years.

Zandi sounded a note of optimism — he predicted both Obama and Romney would address the fiscal cliff, the debt ceiling and fiscal sustainability in a constructive way, and then “this economy will be off and running.”

“If Gov. Romney wins, my guess is that President Obama will kick the can down into spring or summer to let the new president get up and running,” said Zandi. “But if President Obama wins, then the clock starts ticking right away. The timing will be different. But at the end of the day, they both would end up at the same place.”

According to Bloomberg, no matter who wins the election, the economy is on course to enjoy faster growth in the next four years “as the headwinds that have held it back turn into tailwinds.”

Compared with the trough of the downturn, consumers are beginning to spend more, home prices are rebounding and banks are actually increasing lending.

Editor's Note: Economist Warns: 50% Unemployment, 100% Inflation Possible

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