History of American Recessions & Recovery

Here is something interesting I cam across in this article.

“Recessions were never fun, but we used to bounce back from them fairly quickly.  The phrase “bounce back” actually applied.  They were more like injuries in our youth: we could “walk them off.”  Healing was natural, speedy, and expected. But now it seems like every minor injury sends us to the hospital; we take months to recover, and the doctors say we might not ever be the same.  Did we just get old, or did something more specific happen?

I recently wrote of the graph below.  Recessions as measured by the number of private-sector jobs have been generally “V”-shaped: jobs returned about as quickly as they were lost. I noted that in our current recovery, the “V” became very lopsided and that this was the slowest such recovery in our history.




“Do you see a rather stark difference?  Both charts are on the same scale, but the recessions on the left were truly “V”-shaped, while the recessions on the right look more like telephone wires strung between poles that are far apart.  We are taking longer and longer to recover from recessions.  In fact, it is not a sure thing that we will ever fully recover from this last one.”


“[this] a chart that shows how our “recovery time” has grown in recent years.  These are the number of months between the tops of the “Vs.”


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