This is what reporters/columnists are supposed to do. His column is not an endorsement, it just lays out the benefits and downsides of a serious budget. What a novel idea.


I noted the comments below on Zandi's concern that stimulus is not needed because the economy is kicking into a higher gear. FWIW, Zandi has seen the economy kicking into a higher gear numerous times over the last four years.

For example, in December of 2010 he told David Leonhardt:

"In my previous baseline I expected real G.D.P. growth of 2.8 percent in 2011 and 4.2 percent in 2012, ... I’m now expecting real G.D.P. growth of 3.9 percent in 2011 and 3.4 percent in 2012."

Actual growth in 2011 was 2.0 percent and in 2012 1.6 percent.

An NYT article in April of 2012 told readers:

"'I’m relatively optimistic,' said Mark Zandi, the chief economist at Moody’s Analytics, who released a note this week showing unemployment dropping faster than he previously forecast. As for the more dire claims about an economy on the brink, 'I don’t really take those seriously.'"

The average growth rate over the next three quarters was 1.5 percent.

It is worth taking this track record into account in assessing Zandi's view of the benefits of stimulus at present. He has been seriously overly optimistic in his past forecasts.