Data from tech giant Google shows that people are searching for “recession” at almost the same level they were in November 2009, a few months after the end of the Great Recession, The Washington Post reports.
Google tracks search terms dating back to 2004 and scores them 100 at their peak.
Searches for “recession” peaked in January 2008 and reached one-third of that mark in November 2009.
U.S. stock markets suffered their sharpest Christmas Eve decline in decades Monday, and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin’s attempt to steady nervous markets by calling major U.S. banks startled traders.
The government shutdown over border wall funding and President Donald Trump’s reported discussions to see whether he could fire Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome H. Powell have also fueled anxiety. Powell has drawn Trump’s ire for steadily raising interest rates this year.
“If this weren’t the end of December, I would have thought it was April Fools,” Jared Bernstein, former chief economist to Vice President Joe Biden, told the Post regarding Mnuchin’s calls to CEOs. “The markets are already nervous enough. It’s like sending out a message saying our space shields can intercept incoming asteroids. Uh, I didn’t know there were any coming our way.”
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