The risk of the U.S. falling into a recession is “very, very high,” Goldman Sachs Chairman Lloyd Blankfein warned Sunday, saying citizens and corporations alike must prepare for the worst.
Blankfein, the investment bank’s former chief executive and current senior chairman, issued the grim warning on the CBS program “Face the Nation.” It comes as inflation is tracking at 8.3 percent over this time last year, economic growth fell into negative numbers for the first quarter of the year, and the national debt has topped $30 trillion.
“If I were running a big company, I would be very prepared for it,” Blankfein said. “If I was a consumer, I’d be prepared for it.”
The Federal Reserve raised its benchmark interest rate by a half-point earlier this month, in a strong, but expected move to slow surging inflation amid the negative economic growth. The central bank is expected to continue raising the rate through the end of the year after holding it at or near zero for several years. It normally raises or lowers the rate in quarter-point increments, and the half-point increase, which followed a quarter-point boost in March, was the biggest jump since May, 2000. The current federal funds target rate is between .75% and 1%.