Economy-watchers will find out just how poorly the economy performed in

the first quarter of 2009 on Wednesday, April 29. That's when the

Bureau of Economic Analysis releases the advance report on Gross

Domestic Product (GDP). Expectations are that the annualized decrease

will be at least 6.0 percent, as bad as the fourth quarter of 2008. But

once the economy gets past the first quarter carnage, the consensus

view among economists is that Q2 will bring a more modest decrease of 2

to 3 percent. Moving into the second half of 2009, analysts look for

growth as measured by GDP to turn positive. The Round Number Forecast

from the W. P. Carey School of Business, released April 16, is

projecting that GDP will decrease by 3.0 percent for all of 2009 and

increase by 2.0 percent next year.