So When Did the Recession Start?

The definition of a recession is a significant decline in economic activity spread
across the economy, lasting more than a few months, normally visible in
real G.D.P., real income, employment, industrial production, and
wholesale-retail sales.

So when did the recession start?

I started predicting a recession almost one year ago. Here is what I said in my Peanut Butter and Pasta post on October 24th, 2007:

So where do you look first for a downturn in the economy? Do you look
to the stock market? No. Do you look to the Federal Reserve? No. Do you
look to surveys? No. You look to PB&J. You look to spaghetti. The
economy takes root in spending. If people start adjusting their
spending en mass, then you know they know something you don’t know.

I don’t even think this is a short term slow down either. I think this is a shift. As I noted in my Paul Krugman entry, the middle class is getting squeezed between the haves and haves nots. College costs are up to the point where reevaluating the benefit is now a consideration. And Alex Rodriguez, who didn’t go to college, is about to get a contact of 10 years for something around $30 million a year.

what is amazing is that this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Values are
changing – at least in the US. There is a push to get more green, be
more socially conscience, and to rediscover the family. None of these
things requires a rich man.

It is important to know when a recession starts because the last few recorded recessions were brief (less than a year) and only two were longer than that (’73-’75 and ’81-’82). Many more interesting recession facts are within a Floyd Norris blog called First Birthday for the Recession.
Many people are talking about this being a lengthy downturn, maybe not deep, but drawn out. I see it as the opposite. I see jobs cuts to accelerate and the retail economy to really sink. But the deep bottom will clear out and a spike back the other way will happen relatively quickly. I see positive signs one year from now with Q1 of 2010 being a start of the next great economic run. If I’m write, that would be about 24 months of recessionary economics. That is longer than most downturns as it is.

Another background entry of mine:
It’s Not a Recession, But It Sure Feels Like It

It’s Not a Recession, But It Sure Feels Like It – Stats


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