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Recession Or Contraction?  
User currently offlineMike89406 From United States of America, joined Mar 2007, 1554 posts, RR: 3
Posted (4 years 9 months 2 weeks 2 days 3 hours ago) and read 1632 times:

I was listening to NPR while I was driving today Harvard Economist Professor Rogoff made mention of the fact that were in a "economic contraction", not a recession. In fact he eludes to say that we were never in a recession to begin with.The phrase "Recession" has been coined for the economic downturn. So which is it?

Some of the points mentioned on the radio were that if we were in a recession or more importantly one that was as severe as experts say then it would take probably 4-5 years to even get back to the the same growth and numbers proceeding the economic downturn of 2008. Deflation fears were also mentioned.




At any rate it made interesting food for thought. So what are the opinions of everyone else on the subject maybe some of you can shed more light.

Regards, Mike

2 replies: All unread, jump to last
User currently offlineRara From Germany, joined Jan 2007, 2507 posts, RR: 2
Reply 1, posted (4 years 9 months 2 weeks 2 days ago) and read 1600 times:

Hmm - recession and contraction should be the same thing, at least in the common use of language. In a recession, the economy "contracts" in the sense that the value of all goods and services diminishes, and the level of economic activity declines. So I don't think this can be an either-or questions, unless someone wants to change the definitions.

Samson was a biblical tough guy, but his dad Samsonite was even more of a hard case.
User currently offlineKen777 From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 9246 posts, RR: 10
Reply 2, posted (4 years 9 months 2 weeks 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 1594 times:

Quoting Rara (Reply 1):
So I don't think this can be an either-or questions, unless someone wants to change the definitions.

The first link provided the difference in the economist's thinking


Well, a contraction is a much much more severe version of a recession. It's accompanied by a financial crash. You have a recession, they last a year, at most two years. And then, once the recovery starts, six months later, you're back to where you started.

The financial crisis we had was clearly different and I can accept that definition. For general purposes people aren't going to change terms - calling it the Great Recession is bad enough.

But it should be understood that, for far too many people, recovering from this recession/contraction will take years. And some will never recover.

For the Average American with a reasonable home & mortgage their debt on their home could stay underwater because of the economy, not because of anything they have done. That is going to impact their spending for 5 to 10 years, another indicator of the problems we face.

Not really good news these days, especially with the poetical instability in DC preventing any significant jobs creation programs.

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