The latest WSJ survey of economists shows that the group, on average, is looking for U.S. unemployment to remain above 9 percent through the end of 2010. That's despite expectations of the recession ending in August. Talk about a slow recovery. If they're looking at 9 percent+ for the nation, you can be sure that California will remain in the 10 or 11 percent range.
"For real people, there is no recovery until the unemployment rate stabilizes," said Nicholas S. Perna of Perna Associates. "If the Fed starts raising rates in the face of continued job losses, it could abort a recovery." On the housing front, economists foresee that market remaining under pressure. Most said home prices won't stop declining until the first half of 2010, and even then prices for next year are expected to be mostly flat. But 92% of the economists said an end to home-price drops isn't a prerequisite for a sustained recovery.