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Fifth Third chief economist says mild recession possible in 2024

ORLANDO, Fla. — Editor’s note: This story is available as a result of a content partnership between WFTV and the Orlando Business Journal.

Last year started with a high degree of uncertainty about the direction of the national economy, with forecasts that ranged from major recession to minor downturn to no recession at all.

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Consensus has built around the idea of a soft landing of the economy in 2024, but Fifth Third Bank Chief Economist Jeffrey Korzenik still issued a note of caution during the Business Journal’s annual Economic Outlook event on Jan. 23.

The Federal Reserve has made progress in taming inflation with higher interest rates, but “we haven’t quite finished the job,” Korzenik said. A soft landing of the economy would require inflation to fall before rates break economic growth, but the U.S. inflation rate in December was higher than expected, and still above the Fed’s 2% target, he said.

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