Suzy Jagger
Times Online
January 12, 2009

One of the world’s leading economists has given warning that the United States is facing a decade of financial misery, with the number of unemployed Americans set to continue to rise for years.

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Robert Shiller, Professor of Economics at Yale University, who predicted the end of the internet bubble seven years ago, said: “We could have many years of a very weak economy. Big recessions are followed by years of weakness and typically unemployment keeps rising.

“To say that this will last years is not a dramatic statement. What is happening now is much worse than 1990. We could be facing a decade of real weakness.

“This is no ordinary recession. There are signs that people see this as a different story. People are talking about a depression, something that we haven’t seen previously.”

Professor Shiller’s comments come as the unemployment rate in America is rising astonishingly fast.

Last week official figures showed that the US lost 524,000 jobs in December, with the overall unemployment rate rising to 7.2 per cent — the highest level for 16 years.

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