Intrade Predictions for the Dec. 2009 Jobless Rate
Probabilities above are for the December 2009 U.S. jobless rate, from futures contracts traded on Intrade: The Prediction Market. Based on these contracts, there is only a 1 out of 8 chance of an unemployment rate above 9.50% in 2009, suggesting that there's probably almost no chance that in 2009 we would be anywhere even close to the 10.8% jobless rate of 1982, and zero chance of reaching the unemployment rates of the 1930s and the Great Depression.
And yet according to Obama, "I don't think that any economist disputes that we're in the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression." Trading on Intrade suggests otherwise.
Update: The WSJ consensus forecast for the December 2009 unemployment rate is 8.6%, based on the average forecast of 55 economists.