From December 2007 up to the present day, we have officially been in a recession, declares the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER). The Department of Labor may be interested to know that the biggest factor causing NBER’s recession 2008 declaration has been the 1.2 million payroll employment drop we’ve seen this year, according to Michael Rosen of Mid Coast Views. We define “recession” as “two quarters of successive contraction in gross domestic product”, says Rosen– but the National Bureau of Economic Research is not bound by that definition when making the call. It is NBER’s job to declare when a recession has officially begun or ended in the United States.
Rosen also notes that NBER’s last declaration of recession was for the period of March through November of 2001– interestingly enough, ending the holiday season following the September 11th attacks (war is profitable, right Mr. President?– just like the oil industry).
The National Bureau of Economic Research, formed in 1920, is the largest economics research organization in the United States, according to their Wikipedia site. Several winners of the Nobel Prize for Economics have been members of or otherwise affiliated with this group, the site claims.
David Romer and Christina Romer, Barack Obama’s former campaign economic advisors, is and was (respectively) a member of NBER (as previously reported by myself). The University of California at Berkeley husband and wife economists are among the most highly respected in the nation. This declaration comes just one week after we received the news that President-elect Obama had appointed Christina Romer as head of his Council of Economic Advisors on November 24, 2008.
Called an independent by Obama and a liberal by right-wing opposition to Obama, Romer’s financial expertise marked with an extensive background knowledge of The Great Depression could certainly serve the new administration well. Could Christina Romer be part of the team that is our nation’s cure for this latest recession? Possibly.
One thing I would venture to guess is not on her economic-recovery strategic plan: increased warfare in nations which need not our occupation. Time will tell if the perceived wisdom, freshness, and well-educated perspective presented by Obama and Romer can rescue America from financial struggle. I can’t wait to see what it is she recommends for our new president, and what advice he will act upon. One thing is for sure– he’ll have to act quickly, as many of us Americans are financially drowning.
Michael Rosen, National Bureau of Economic Research declares recession began in December 2007, Mid Coast Views
National Bureau of Economic Research, Wikipedia
Elizabeth Eng, Christina Romer Heads Obama’s Council of Economic Advisors, Associated Content