Recession is coming — and a raft of companies will fail, warns elite investor Jeffrey Gundlach

  • Jeffrey Gundlach said the US economy is headed for a recession and a wave of company failures.
  • Several sectors are slowing and higher interest rates are squeezing people and businesses, he said.
  • Higher prices and interest costs are spurring consumers to rack up credit-card debt, Gundlach said.

Prepare for a recession to strike and companies to collapse as stubborn inflation and sticky interest rates take their toll, Jeffrey Gundlach warned.

The billionaire investor told Fox Business on Tuesday that the US economy will suffer a prolonged downturn this year or next. Gundlach pointed to “quite concerning” data released in the past month showing that the majority of economic sectors are declining and others are growing more slowly.

The DoubleLine Capital founder and CEO also pointed to the hardships caused by inflation, which soared to over 9% in 2022 and remains well above the Federal Reserve’s 2% target, and interest-rate hikes, which have surged from virtually zero to over 5%.

Consumers have faced a “double whammy” of higher prices for basics such as food, gas, and housing, while also owing more interest each month on their car loans, credit cards, mortgages, and other debts.

“All of these things are up tremendously, the things you have to buy,” Gundlach said, citing car and homeowners’ insurance as examples. “Those credit-card bills are really starting to add up.”

He said that persistently higher rates could drive some companies to ruin and tank the wider economy.

“I think that higher for longer is going to lead to a recession,” Gundlach said. “You’re not going to take out Tesla necessarily — they might have other problems, but it’s not going to be because of interest rates.”

“What you take out is the people, small businesses, medium businesses,” as they’ll run out of cash borrowing at 10% instead of 4%, he said.

Gundlach said the softening economic data has increased the probability of two Fed rate cuts this year, but he doesn’t expect that to stave off a recession.

It’s worth noting that the veteran fund manager has been ringing the recession alarm for more than two years.

He said last fall that he expected a downturn to occur in the first half of this year, which seems unlikely at this point. Yet Gundlach is one of several experts who sees cracks forming in the economy.

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