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By Jason Stipp | 09-23-2010 10:20 AM

Recovery That Feels Like Recession

Slow, spotty improvement in some areas of the economy makes it feel like the recession never ended for some, says Morningstar's Bob Johnson.

Jason Stipp: I'm Jason Stipp for Morningstar.

The National Bureau of Economic Research recently announced that the recession ended in June 2009. This may sound like a piece of good news, but it may not be especially believable to a lot of folks out there, who are still suffering through an economy that's slow to recover.

Here with me to offer his take on that news is Morningstar's Bob Johnson, director of economic Analysis. Thanks for joining me, Bob.

Robert Johnson: Thanks.

Stipp: So, first question for you. I think the markets received this news in a positive way. What does it mean that they call the end of the recession, technically? What are they looking at, and what can we take away from that just looking purely on a data or an economic perspective?

Johnson: This is an independent group of economists that declares the end of the recession and that turned out in their mind to be June of 2009, and they are pretty clear about what metrics they used, and it really didn't come as a great surprise, many had been using it for sometime.

They look at real incomes, retail sales, industrial production, and employment. And clearly, the employment was the last one to fall in place, and I think they were unwilling, until that showed some clear signs of at least a little improvement, before they declared the end.

Stipp: So obviously, they are looking for some sort of inflection point, so when they do look at all that data, what does that tell us when we look back on it and see they've marked this point, so what does that mean as far as those indicators?

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