December 1, 2008 / 6:57 PM / 11 years ago

FACTBOX: U.S. recessions back to 1923

(Reuters) - The National Bureau of Economic Research’s Business Cycle Dating Committee, the accepted arbiter of U.S. recessions, said on Monday that the U.S. economy tipped into a recession a year ago.

At 12 months and counting, the current recession is already the third longest since the Great Depression of the 1930s.

The NBER does not define a recession as two consecutive quarters of decline in real gross domestic product, as is the rule of thumb in many countries.

Rather, a recession is a significant decline in economic activity spread across the economy, lasting more than a few months, normally visible in real GDP, real income, employment, industrial production and wholesale-retail sales.

As a result, the NBER waits until there is conclusive evidence of a broad, lasting downturn before declaring the start of a recession. Since 1945, there have been 10 business cycles. The average recession has lasted 10 months, while the average expansion has spanned 57 months.

Below are the dates of recessions stretching back to 1923.

2001 RECESSION (eight months)

Began March 2001

Ended November 2001

1990 RECESSION (eight months)

Began July 1990

Ended March 1991

1981 RECESSION (16 months)

Began July 1981

Ended November

1980 RECESSION (six months)

Began January 1980

Ended July 1980

1973 RECESSION (16 months)

Began November 1973

Ended March 1975

1969 RECESSION (11 months)

Began December 1969

Ended November 1970

1960 RECESSION (10 months)

Began April 1960

Ended February 1961

1957 RECESSION (eight months)

Began August 1957

Ended April 1958

1953 RECESSION (10 months)

Began July 1953

Ended May 1954

1948 RECESSION (11 months)

Began November 1948

Ended October 1949

1945 RECESSION (eight months)

Began February 1945

Ended October 1945

1937 RECESSION (13 months)

Began May 1937

Ended June 1938

1929 RECESSION (43 months)

Began August 1929

Ended March 1933

1926 RECESSION (13 months)

Began October 1926

Ended November 1927

1923 RECESSION (14 months)

Began May 1923

Ended July 1924

Compiled by Washington Newsroom; Editing by Kenneth Barry

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