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Bank of America CEO says latest jobs report supports his forecast of a “mild” recession.

“How could you have a recession without unemployment?” Moynihan asked on CBS News Take on the nation program on Sunday, quoting the 263,000 new jobs reported in the U.S. jobs report on Friday.

The Bank of America CEO on Sunday said he expects the US economy to contract by “just 1%” for the first three quarters of 2023, then return to positive growth. “This is a milder recession,” Moynihan said.

Moynihan has been more optimistic about the US economy than some of his colleagues. Last week, the CEO of Bank of America expected a slight decline Cnn, joking “hurricane season is now over.” (Moynihan was referring to a June comment by JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon that the US economy he was facing a hurricane”)

Bank of America’s new US economics chief predicted in June that the US could experience a mild recession by end 2022. But heavy consumer spending in September it led Bank of America’s research team to shift its recession forecast to 2023. “They keep pushing,” Moynihan joked last month to Initiative of the CEO of Fortune conference.

Moynihan’s more optimistic view of the US economic future contrasts sharply with other dire predictions.

In October, Nouriel Roubini, the New York University professor often dubbed “Dr. Doom “for his predictions on the 2007 housing crash, said he expects the United States to face a”long and ugly“recession.

Last week, Mohamed El-Erian, chief economic adviser for Allianz, called banks predicting a “short and shallow” recession in an op-ed for the Financial Times. El-Erian says he fears they risk “a repetition of the analytical and behavioral pitfalls that characterized last year’s ill-fated inflation call.”

A June poll from the Financial Times reported that two-thirds of US economists believed a recession would hit next year. CEOs are also worried, with 98% of business leaders preparing for a recession in the next 12-18 months, according to an October poll by the Conference Council.

However, on Sunday, Moynihan defended his more optimistic view by pointing to the strong US performance amid interest rate hikes from the Federal Reserve.

“The belief was when the Fed started raising rates that there would be an immediate recovery in the economy,” Moynihan said. “It didn’t happen.”

Other banks are also reconsidering the possibility of a US recession, thanks to better-than-expected economic data. Both Goldman Sachs And Morgan Stanley predicted in November that the US could narrowly escape a recession altogether.

The Bank of America CEO pointed to some negative indicators, such as a weakening housing market and slowing consumer spending. But Moynihan says the swings show the US economy is becoming more sustainable.

Declining job opportunities and turnover, in particular, aren’t good for job seekers, says Moynihan, but they’re “actually good signs for the economy as it starts to get into a better picture that can grow at a more normalized rate.”

Bank of America economists predict that unemployment will increase to 5.5% by next year, according to a research note released last week. People losing their jobs are “a horrible thing to contemplate,” Moynihan said Sunday, but the United States has experienced that unemployment rate before. Before the COVID-19 pandemic, the US recently had an unemployment rate of 5.5%. May 2015.

“We didn’t feel awful then,” Moynihan said.