Traditionally, however, Wall Street defines a recession as two consecutive quarters of falling Gross Domestic Product. By this definition, even the one-quarter “recession” in 2001 was hardly that. The National Bureau of Economic Research says a recession involves “a significant decline in economic activity spread across the economy, lasting more than a few months,” and Congress’ Joint Economic Committee, which boasts a 60-year track record of successfully predicting recessions, ranked the probability that the U.S. was in a recession in December at 35.5 percent. In January, a mere six percent.
[Emphasis added. –R]