A lot of journalists have written off the possibility the economy can avert a recession.
However, it isn't conventional wisdom that the economy is heading for a recession outside of the journalism world.
Jack Welch, author of "Winning," appeared on MSNBC's January 14 "Morning Joe" to discuss the economy, the presidential race and professional football. Welch told viewers he didn't anticipate a recession.
"No, I don't think we're going to hit recession, but it's going to feel like it," Welch said. "Things are slowing down dramatically, as everyone knows. But I think we'll weather this thing and the global economy will keep us alive. So, we will not have a technical recession, but it will sure as hell feel like one."
The "technical definition" of a recession is a period of general economic decline; specifically, negative growth in gross domestic product (GDP) for two or more consecutive quarters.
For the last two quarters, GDP (as reported by the U.S. Commerce Department) has grown at a rate of 3.8 percent (second quarter of 2007) and 4.9 percent (third quarter) - not a sign of a recessionary trend. Fourth-quarter GDP numbers for 2007 won't be released until March.
Recently both Bloomberg and The Wall Street Journal surveyed economists on the possibility of a recession. Although the surveys didn't indicate economists were predicting robust economic growth, both surveys indicated the majority of economists predicted the economy would stave off a recession.