A private group says the U.S. economy has been in a recession since December of last year.
The declaration is made by the National Bureau of Economic Research. The private NBER says its group of academic economists decided that the U.S. recession began last December.
Many economists believe the current downturn will last through at least the middle of next year, and will be the most severe slump since the 1981-82 recession.
By one benchmark, a recession occurs whenever the gross domestic product declines for two consecutive quarters. However, the NBER's dating committee uses broader and more precise measures.
Founded in 1920, the NBER has more than 1,000 university professors and researchers who act as bureau associates, studying how the economy works.