Its Official! Europe is now in a double-dip recession! The European Commission revised its estimate for the rate of growth for the 1st Quarter of 2012, downgrading it to a negative 0.1%. The rate was -0.4% for the 4th Quarter of 2011. So technically, the European Union now has two consecutive fiscal quarters of negative GDP growth, which spells recession. Now, the downgrade for now specifically targets eastern nations, like Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic, which are not full EU members, using the Euro as their national currency. The recent agreement to give Greece an additional 170 Billion Euros through the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund has not created much confidence, either. Other Euro countries, like Italy, Spain and Portugal are still facing their day of reckoning. The financial health of banks in the UK and France are also still very shaky.

double dip recession europe

Add to the ongoing debt crisis, several European nations are now going to feel the pinch as Iran suspends oil sales to them in response to economic sanctions over its nuclear program. Oil prices are already over $106 dollars per barrel. Unrest in other parts of the Middle East and Northern Africa are also looming over Europe. A new wave of fighting between tribes in Libya, the rebellion in Syria and more tension in Egypt are not helping matters.

Some analysts are optimistic about the U.S. economy being able to weather any trouble overseas. They point to declining unemployment numbers and increased corporate profit earnings. But there are a lot of ′buts′ in the calculus. Much of the improved US corporate earnings are from overseas sales. The Obama administration is playing a fast and loose numbers game in the Labor Department reports on unemployment. Meanwhile, the Obama regulatory vise continues to squeeze about $9.5 Billion more each month as companies are forced to comply with an ever increasing number of new regulations.

The European Union is officially now in a ′mild recession′ after today′s revised outlook was issued by the European Commission. With two consecutive fiscal quarters of negative GDP growth, Europe is now in a double-dip recession. The fall out from the latest Greek bailout, as well as looming trouble with bank solvency could make the situation far worse. As well as any spike in oil prices due to unrest with Iran and other Middle East countries. The U.S. economy is still weak and will undoubtedly follow suit entering a double-dip recession as well later this year. Just in time for the presidential elections.