Business Cycle Dating Committee, National Bureau of Economic Research January 7, 2008 This report is also available as a PDF file. The chronology identifies the dates of peaks and troughs that frame economic recession or expansion.
In addition, we refer to two indicators with coverage primarily of manufacturing and goods: (3) industrial production and (4) the volume of sales of the manufacturing and wholesale-retail sectors adjusted for price changes.According to the chronology, the most recent peak occurred in March 2001, ending a record-long expansion that began in 1991.The most recent trough occurred in November 2001, inaugurating an expansion.We view real GDP as the single best measure of aggregate economic activity. The traditional role of the committee is to maintain a monthly chronology, however, and the BEA's real GDP estimates are only available quarterly.In determining whether a recession has occurred and in identifying the approximate dates of the peak and the trough, we therefore place considerable weight on the estimates of real GDP issued by the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) of the U. For this reason, we refer to a variety of monthly indicators to determine the months of peaks and troughs.