Swami, the envelope, please.
A: Subprime mortgage-backed debt, your mother-in-law and the economy in 2008.
Q: Name a mess, a stress and a guess.
Predictions on the economy are never a sure thing, but if subprime fallout, $100-a-barrel oil and the 2008 presidential election have you trading in your abacus for a Magic 8 Ball, Bankrate.com has just the thing for you.
Bankrates crystal ball scrolls a series of quotes from a survey of economists, as well as predictions from author and futurist Alvin Toffler, psychic Sylvia Browne and astrologers Arch Crawford and Susan Miller. The trick is matching the forecast to its source.
Consider some gems from the ball for 2008:
1) gas will hit $5 a gallon; 2) the stock market will drop in January; 3) housing prices will drop 20% to 30%; 4) unemployment will creep up slowly; 5) commodities will do well; 6) interest rates will stay flat; 7) the job market will decline; 8) inflation will be slightly better next year; 9) the housing market will be slow to respond; and 10) Brad Pitt will be in the spotlight, especially in rebuilding New Orleans.
Answers: 1) psychic 2) psychic 3) psychic 4) economists 5) psychic 6) economists 7) psychic 8) economists 9) psychic 10) Come on, thats a gimme!