Really the entire debate as to whether the U.S. is in a recession or not comes down to definitions.
The standard definition for a recession says you come out of it when GDP stops declining, but this doesn’t mean the sun is shining for all Americans.
In a general sense, however, we can still consider ourselves in recession, says Warren Buffett, which essentially means ‘times are still tough’:
BECKY: The NBER. said this week that the– recession officially ended back in June of last year.
BUFFETT: Well, they define it differently. But I– I mean, I– I define it– I think we’re in a recession until real per capita G.D.P. gets back to where it was– before. That is not the way the National Bureau of Economic Research measures it. But I will tell you that to any– on any common sense def– definition, the average American is below where he was before or his family, in terms of real income, GDP. We’re still in a recession. And– and we’re not gonna be out of it for a while, but we will get out of it.
He also notes, however, that industries he operates in are rebounding from their lows. So we’re also experiencing a ‘recovery’ based on common sense, even if times are still tough, which opens up another can of semantic worms for politicians to distort to their advantage.