Google Trends: (mis)fortune teller

I was in Google Trends the other day, doing some research for a client. On a whim, I decided to also see the search trend for “recession”. What an interesting find! Here is Google’s Trend graph:

aaronhoos_googletrends_recession

At first glance, it’s shocking to see how much the search volume and news references have grown. It’s shocking, but not a huge surprise: the recession is bad but the badness is stoked like a fire by the media.

But there’s something I find even more fascinating: Look at the first quarter of 2007. Recession searching spiked there. By today’s standards it wasn’t much, but compared to the amount that it was searched prior to that, it was huge. If someone had been paying attention, they would have had almost an entire year of warning before the through-the-roof spike in the beginning of 2008. Time to sell stocks, short stocks, lock in customers, and reduce inventory.

Leave a Reply