WASHINGTON — The 2007-2009 recession, already in the record books as the worst in the 66 years since the end of World War II, was even worse than previously thought.
From the start of the recession at the end of 2007 to the end in June of 2009, the U.S. economy shrank 5.1 percent. That is 1 percentage point worse than the previous estimate that the recession reduced total output during that period by 4.1 percent.
The new estimates emerged from the annual revision of economic data prepared by the Commerce Department’s Bureau of Economic Analysis and released Friday.
Among the previous 10 postwar recessions, output in only two dropped by more 3 percent. In the 1957-58 recession, the economy contracted 3.7 percent. And during the 1973-1975 downturn, the economy fell 3.2 percent from the start of the recession to the end.
The government attributed the bigger declines in output in part to weaker consumer spending and business investment than previously estimated.
Oh, you mean the kind of thing a REAL STIMULUS PACKAGE would have helped? Who the hell listens to a bunch of dirty hippies, anyway?