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Breaking News: The Recession has been over since June 2009 (who knew?)


The Business Cycle Dating Committee of the NBER (National Bureau of Economic Research) formally announced today that the U.S. recession that started December 2007, actually ended on June 2009.

And that

The recession lasted 18 months, which makes it the longest of any recession since World War II. Previously the longest postwar recessions were those of 1973-75 and 1981-82, both of which lasted 16 months.

According to the actual report from the NBER site

the committee determined that a trough in business activity occurred in the U.S. economy in June 2009. The trough marks the end of the recession that began in December 2007 and the beginning of an expansion.

As of Friday, 124 U.S. banks have failed, unemployment rate (as of August 2010) is 9.6%, foreclosures are at an all time high, and here’s a fun fact – ‘U.S. poverty rate hits highest level since 1994’.  Is it just me, or does this breaking news not really mean anything at all?

This is how the NBER defines recession:

It’s more accurate to say that a recession—the way we use the word—is a period of diminishing activity rather than diminished activity. We identify a month when the economy reached a peak of activity and a later month when the economy reached a trough. The time in between is a recession, a period when economic activity is contracting. The following period is an expansion. As of September 2010, when we decided that a trough had occurred in June 2009, the economy was still weak, with lingering high unemployment, but had expanded considerably from its trough 15 months earlier.

So I guess it’s too early to say that we’re in the clear, but it’s possibly on the up?  No double-dip…hopefully.

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