It's Official: Worst Recovery in Post-World War II Era

Oct 5, 2012

Oregon gas lines during the 1970s fuel shortage offer gas to even-numbered license plates. Photographer: David Falconer/Library of Congress Collection.

It’s official. With this morning’s jobs numbers, we have entered the longest recovery period of the post-World War II era.

This dubious honor means it’s been 40 months since the recession technically ended, but its reverberations continue to shake the economy. The Chamber’s chief economist, Dr. Martin Regalia, said:

“[Job growth] remains far too slow to reemploy the millions who remain unemployed or underemployed. With the economy still stuck in first gear, the policies coming out of Washington, such as the looming fiscal cliff, take on even greater significance.”

These are uncharted waters. Looking at previous recession and recovery periods, even some of the bleakest, we were out of the woods by now. But today, we are still 4.5 million jobs away from pre-recession levels. That’s a daunting number, even accounting for population increases.

How does today compare to previous recession and recovery periods? Check out the chart and photos below.

Historic Recessions and Recoveries in Pictures:







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