Business, Finance & Economics

Dr. Doom gets his doom on


Madeline Wilson from the National Gallery of Victoria mimics the scream from Edvard Munch's famous hand-coloured lithograph version of 'The Scream.'


William West

Nouriel Roubini made a name for himself after predicting the bubble in the U.S. housing market long before it popped.

Since then the globe-trotting economist has been known — affectionately, of course — as "Dr. Doom."

Well, Dr. Doom is getting his doom on again.

In a Bloomberg story published last week but making the rounds on the internet today, Roubini is warning of a "Great Depression" unless the global economy gets massive stimulus.

Here's the money quote:

You need to restore economic growth, not five years from now, you need to restore it today. In the short term, we need to do massive stimulus, otherwise there’s going to be another Great Depression. Things are getting worse and the big difference between now and a few years ago is that this time around we’re running out of policy bullets.

Roubini warns that economic events in the U.S. and Europe are conspiring in a particularly scary way:

I thought a few months ago that the perfect storm would be 2013. But now, the economic weakness in the U.S., euro zone and the U.K. is front loaded. So we’re going to double dip earlier. The climax of it could be 2013, or it could be already earlier. It depends on what policy tools are available.

Of course, Dr. Doom hasn't always been right.

As Bloomberg points out, in March of 2009 Roubini predicted the S&P would fall to 600 or lower by the end of that year. Instead, it surged 65 percent the rest of 2009. 

That aside, where would Dr. Doom put his money today?

Here's the relevant graph from the Bloomberg piece:

Roubini said if he had large amounts of money to invest, he would “mostly keep it in cash,” especially in dollars, as the U.S. currency tends to strengthen during financial crises. He said he would also favor government bonds of countries with small budget deficits and low public debt, such as Canada and Australia, and avoid stocks and commodities. “If we see a nasty global recession, then risky assets, starting with equities, are going to hurt and going to hurt big time."