Geithner, Greenspan say recession nearing end

Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and former Fed chairman Alan Greenspan say the United States is climbing its way out of recession.
 
They both said the danger of a national financial collapse has passed and Geithner predicted the Obama administration would not ask for any more funds to bail out Wall Street.
 
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Geithner, citing private forecasters, predicted the national economy would grow in the second half of 2009 after contracting by more than 7 percent this year. The economy dropped 6.4 percent in the first quarter and about 1 percent in the second.

“What you're going to see first is growth turn positive. And then you're going to see the pace of job losses slow materially for the -- they have already slowed significantly, as you said. They're going to slow materially further,” Geithner said on ABC’s “This Week” with George Stephanopolous.
“Most private forecasters -- and let's use their judgment -- suggest you're going to see unemployment start to come down maybe beginning in the second half of next year,” he added.
 
Greenspan, who chaired the U.S. Federal Reserve from 1987 to 2006, said “we’re getting very close” to seeing the end of the recession.
 
“I'm pretty sure we've already seen the bottom,” Greenspan said on “This Week”. “In fact, if you look at the weekly production figures for various different industries, it's clear that we've turned, perhaps in the middle of last month, the middle of July. And indeed you're seeing a major increase in assemblies in auto and trucks before the clunker issue even arose."
 
Nevertheless, Geithner said White House officials would look closely at extending unemployment benefits, a proposal that House Ways and Means Chairman Charles Rangel (D-N.Y.) and conservative Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) backed during television appearances Sunday.
 
Geithner added that confidence in the economy has grown and the danger of a financial collapse has passed.
 
“The financial system today is more stable. The cost of credit -- credit is more available. Cost of credit is down significantly. Broad concern about the collapse of the financial system has receded dramatically.”
 
Geithner said the administration does not plan to ask Congress for more funding for the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP). He declined to estimate how much of the money disbursed by the program would be paid back to taxpayers but said that “substantial additional sums will come back.”