White House Council of Economic Advisers Chairman Kevin Hassett said that if the partial government shutdown extends through March, there’s a chance of zero economic expansion this quarter, though “humongous” growth would follow once federal agencies reopen.
Asked in a CNN interview Wednesday if the U.S. could see zero growth with the shutdown, Hassett responded, “Yes, we could, if it extended for the whole quarter.”
“It is true that if we get a typically weak first quarter and extended shutdown that we could end up with a number that is very low,” or “very close to zero,” Hassett said. He added that he sees the chance of a recession in 2020 as “very, very close to zero.”
Growth could rebound to “4 or 5 percent” in the second quarter if the government reopens, he said.