On January 15, 2015, current Booth MBA student, Jonathan Smucker, and colleague, Mary Allmon attended the University of Chicago Booth’s Economic Outlook 2015. The presenters were dynamic speakers with impressive resumes:
- Austan Goolsbee, University of Chicago economics professor and economic advisor to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, and former cabinet member
- Randall Kroszner, University of Chicago economics professor and former Federal Reserve Governor
- Carl Tannenbaum, Senior Vice President and Chief Economist at the Northern Trust
The presenters collectively agreed that 2015 would be a year of slightly faster U.S. GDP growth, that European policy makers must act in order to fight deflation, and that India is on the right track. These statements are all consistent with Marietta’s 2015 Outlook. The presenters also agreed that the recent plunge in the price of oil was unexpected, but was a net positive to the economies of oil importers, the US included. They did not necessarily agree on the causes of the drastic price move: Goolsbee cited slowing demand in China while Tannenbaum mentioned geopolitical games being played within OPEC. Tannenbaum echoed a statement similar to Marietta’s Dec. 4 Oil Blog “Oil Spills: Winners and Losers” that while US oil production growth will slow in the short term, it is unlikely to be permanently damaged. The speakers also agreed that the Fed was likely to raise interest rates in the second half of the year, with fall being the median prediction.