National Bureau of Economic Research Confirms U.S. Officially in a Recession

According to the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) the U.S. is now officially in a recession, the worst downturn since the Great Depression. In making its declaration, the NBER committee determined that a “clear peak in month activity” occurred in February, with the peak in quarterly activity happening in the fourth quarter of 2019. Thus, ending 128 consecutive months, or nearly 11 straight years of expansion, the longest in post WW II history. The NBER noted that growth seemed poised to continue until the declaration of the coronavirus as a pandemic, a move that triggered 95% of the U.S. economy being put into shutdown and sent the unemployment rate, which had been at a 50-year low, soaring to 14.7%, its worst in post-World War II history. However, most economist now think the contraction will end in the second quarter, putting an end to the recession as well. Goldman Sachs chief economist Jan Hatzius said that while this is “almost certainly the deepest recession since” the war, “it is almost certainly also the shortest recession.”

FEA compiles the Wood Markets News from various 3rd party sources to provide readers with the latest news impacting forest product markets. Opinions or views expressed in these articles do not necessarily represent those of FEA.