As debate over whether or not the U.S. is on the verge of a recession, we would remind investors that waiting for the economists to tell us we are in one is probably not the best advice.
The time-lines below highlight the four recessions in the US economy since 1980 (red line). In each chart we also show the date (blue dot) when the National Bureau of Economic Research [NBER] declared that the U.S. economy was actually in a recession.
While the NBER was pretty timely in its recognition of the recession that began in Summer 1981, they were late to the game in the remaining three. In fact, during the last two recessions, the NBER did not officially declare the start to a recession until the recession had already ended.