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US in recession since Dec 2007, confirms NBER

Press Trust of India  |  Washington 

The world's largest economy US slipped into recession almost a year ago and not now as is widely believed, the country's National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) has said.

A panel of economists of the NBER that is responsible for dating the business cycles in the US has noted that the nation entered into recession in December last year after 73 months of economic expansion since November 2001.

The committee's word is regarded as final on the question if America has entered recession.

This recession is said to be the longest since World War II.

The NBER's Business Cycle Dating Committee, in a statement on Monday, said that a peak in economic activity occurred in the American economy in December 2007.

NBER is a non-profit group of economists from different institutions, including research firms and universities.

"The peak marks the end of the expansion that began in November 2001 and the beginning of a recession. The expansion lasted 73 months; the previous expansion of the 1990s lasted 120 months," NBER said.

Technically, a recession is defined as two consecutive quarters of negative growth but the panel has a different criteria.

"A recession is a significant decline in economic activity spread across the economy, lasting more than a few months, normally visible in production, employment, real income, and other indicators.

First Published: Tue, December 02 2008. 20:26 IST