Despite some great economic indicators, such as low inflation and historically low unemployment, there’s been a lot of buzz lately that the U.S. economy may be headed into a recession. During a recent meeting of the General Contractor Executive Roundtable, ABC’s long-time economist, Anirban Basu, offered advice on preparing for what he said could be a minor recession in 2020.
Basu covered the current state of Maryland job growth—the worst in the country next to Lousiana. Currently, the only bright spot for job growth in the state is Metro Baltimore. Historically, the major engine of growth has been the Greater Washington area, but the region is suffering because job growth in D.C. remains flat. Basu blamed the federal shutdown on scaring away federal contractors.
Since the beginning of the year, there has been a net loss of jobs in Maryland, the fallout from onerous regulations passed by the General Assembly, such as paid sick leave and minimum wage, said Basu. “If there is a recession, the concern in Maryland is that legislators will blame business and feel they need to have a heavier hand, thus only exacerbating things.”
To prepare for a recession, Basu advised the audience to strengthen their relationship with their bonding agents. Contractors with lots of liquidity and capital should fare better. As for reducing risk in your personal financial portfolio during a recession, Basu recommended moving some assets into cash, dialing back risk, avoiding companies with global exposure.