Washington (AP) A steady stream of discouraging economic news has more economists predicting a recession is on the way.
Job growth is faltering, consumer confidence plunging, there's a credit crunch and the worst housing slump in a quarter-century is growing.
The latest survey by the national association for business economics says 45 percent of the economists on its forecasting panel expect a recession this year. In September, only one in four economists was pessimistic enough to put the chance of a recession at 35 percent or higher.
The survey shows that 55 percent still believe the country will be able to skate by without falling into an actual downturn. That's typically defined as two consecutive quarters of declines in the gross domestic output. All the analysts expect growth to slow considerably this year.