Business cycle dating committee members
Between trough and peak, the economy is in an expansion.Because a recession is a broad contraction of the economy, not confined to one sector, the committee emphasizes economy-wide measures of economic activity.The deduction of transfer payments places the data closer to the desired measure, real gross domestic income.To adjust personal income less transfer payments from nominal to real terms (that is, to remove the effects of price changes), the committee uses the deflator for gross domestic product.In concept, the two should be the same, because sales of products generate income for producers and workers equal to the value of the sales.
The committee believes that the two most reliable comprehensive estimates of aggregate domestic production are normally the quarterly estimate of real Gross Domestic Product and the quarterly estimate of real Gross Domestic Income, both produced by the Bureau of Economic Analysis.
The committee determined that the decline in economic activity in 2008 met the standard for a recession, as set forth in the second paragraph of this document.
All evidence other than the ambiguous movements of the quarterly product-side measure of domestic production confirmed that conclusion.
Third, the government does not publish a price index corresponding to the coverage of the measure.
The committee uses the same interpolated GDP deflator as discussed above.