Usually the release of Congressional Budget Office economic and budget projections is as dull as that phrase makes it sound. But not these economic and budget projections, released today by the CBO. The main takeaway is that if we go over the fiscal cliff — that is, if we let the Bush tax cuts and payroll tax holiday expire while allowing the automatic budget cuts under last summer’s debt ceiling deal to take effect — we’re going to fall into another recession, with real GDP declining by 0.5 percent in 2013. That’s nowhere near the 3.1 percent decline we saw in 2009, but it’s a far cry from the already anemic 2.4 percent and 1.8 percent growth rates of 2010 and 2011 respectively, and the 1.75 percent average we’re at for 2012 so far.
Doing nothing also leads unemployment to rocket up to 9.1 percent, as the graph below shows.
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