• Dr. Anna

Recession - What Does the NBER Say?

Considering the recently emerging concern that the United States is entering a recession based on an indeterminate set of observations promoted in the general media, a new generation of business writers could benefit from a reminder of how a Recession is defined and appears in a chronology spanning a period in excess of 160 years by the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER). On its website, the NBER states:

The NBER does not define a recession in terms of two consecutive quarters of decline in real GDP. Rather, a recession is a significant decline in economic activity spread across the economy, lasting more than a few months, normally visible in real GDP, real income, employment, industrial production, and wholesale-retail sales. For more information, see the latest announcement from the NBER's Business Cycle Dating Committee, dated 9/20/10.

The last announcement released by the NBER’s Business Cycle Dating Committee on September 20, 2010 announced that the recovery from the Recession that began in December 2007, started in June 2009 and presented an in-dept explanation of the process and data contributing to this conclusion. Given the multiple factors that indicate the start of a recession, it does not appear that the United States is entering a Recession in September 2019.