What is a Recession

dollar symbol What is a Recession

Image courtesy of David Castillo Dominici / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

A recession happens when there is a significant decline in the economy which usually lasts for a short period of time. You can tell there is one when consumers don’t spend that much, a lot of people are unemployed, companies have to make job cuts, industrial production is down and lately, there is a housing crisis as people have to foreclose their homes.

By that definition, it would seem the U.S. has been in recession for the past couple of years. Many mainstream media pundits claim we are not in recession but a slow recovery.

Does it seem that way to you?

The technical indicator which tells you that the country is in a recession is when there has been 2 consecutive quarters of negative growth which is measured by the country’s GDP or gross domestic product.

Experts say that this is bound to happen because it is part of the business cycle and things usually improve within 16 to 18 months.

What is a business cycle? It is considered to be a periodic but irregular up and down movement in a country’s economic activity which can be measured by fluctuations in the GDP as well as other macroeconomic variables.

Things are going up when the economy recovers and expands. The situation goes the opposite direction when the market experiences a slowdown until it eventually reaches a recession.

In my opinion, the only reason our economy has not slipped into a full-blown depression is because the privately owned FED continues to print more fiat paper money to bail out the financial industry and keep them afloat. Because of all this cheap money, the stock market value has been inflated to appear it’s hitting new highs. Those highs, however, are masked by the flooding of the market with cheap money.

In the US, building permits are down… and foreclosures are up. There is no renaissance happening in manufacturing. Only half of the new jobs expected showed up in March. Retail sales are down, and consumer confidence is off. The US economy is growing below the Fed’s own “stall speed” indicator. Half a million people fell out of the workforce in March. Retail sales fell in March. So did manufacturing.

Ron Paul recently said on on Bloomberg TV, “You will not see economic growth until you liquidate the debt and liquidate the malinvestment out there.” He goes on to say, “Inflation is when you increase the supply of money. Bond prices go up. Stocks are going up. Housing prices are starting to go back up again. Education costs are going up, but the gross distortion is the effect that the inflation of the money does on the price of money and interest rates and how it causes economic problems and why you don’t get economic growth.

You have to look at the malinvestment and destruction that occurs when you mess around with the price of money. It’s not just the CPI because the CPI is not reliable. The government fudges that as well. They change the way they measure it. Free-market economists say it is going up about 8%. A lot of deception going on out there. I was just talking to someone on getting social security, they’re not happy with the purchasing power of the dollar and you can’t tell me there is no inflation.”

The recession in the United States has affected other countries and drastic steps have been taken to prevent it from getting worse. Britain has injected up to 50 billion pounds which is equivalent to $90 billion into its biggest retail banks. Japan has ordered its ultraconservative Bank of Japan to flood the world with freshly created currency.

Legendary investor Jim Rogers is worried about unprecedented money printing around the globe. Rogers says, “We have never had every government debasing their currency at the same time. . . . This is the first time in recorded history where you have most of them doing it all together. These are perilous times . . . one way or another, this is going to end badly.”

Is there light at the end of the tunnel? The answer is yes but it is going to be some time before anyone will see any improvements. Whether it’s tax cuts or tax increases as the politicians propose, this crisis will continue on for some time until we start to deal with the real issues.

Until somebody comes up with a plan to put people back to work, the current current state of the economy will not improve. It is something that the American public should insist their political leaders solve.

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