Official business cycle dates—the peaks and troughs in the economy that define recessions and expansions—in the U. Today it has over 600 university professors and researchers who conduct empirical research on the economy as Bureau associates.
Business Cycles Within the NBER, the Business Cycle Dating Committee plays the key role in determining business cycle dates.
Whereas the NBER business cycle dates are based on a subjective assessment of a variety of indicators, the dates here are entirely mechanical and are calculated solely from historically reported GDP data.
For more options on recession shading, see the notes and links below.
The recession shading data that we provide initially comes from the source as a list of dates that are either an economic peak or trough.
While gross domestic product (GDP) is the broadest measure of economic activity, the often-cited identification of a recession with two consecutive quarters of negative GDP growth is not an official designation. The NBER recession is a monthly concept that takes account of a number of monthly indicators—such as employment, personal income, and industrial production—as well as quarterly GDP growth.
The designation of a recession is the province of a committee of experts at the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), a private non-profit research organization that focuses on understanding the U. Therefore, while negative GDP growth and recessions closely track each other, the consideration by the NBER of the monthly indicators, especially employment, means that the identification of a recession with two consecutive quarters of negative GDP growth does not always hold.