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Does it matter if we are in a recession?

Friday, May 10, 2013
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Those of you who avidly follow Geoff Riley's blogs on this website may have read that he advises students to avoid getting too worked up about whether the economy is actually in recession.  

Most economic students will readily tell you the official definition of a recession and can analyse the impact of an under-performing economy.  However, it was interesting to read today that, having officially avoided a triple-dip recession last month we may have to revise whether we actually sank in to a double-dip recession in the first place.  Follow this link to read the Telegraph's report on how the ONS are revising recent statistics on the economy's performance, suggesting that the shrink in the construction industry shrank by 5.0% (not 5.4% as originally reported) in the first three months of 2012 and, as a consequence, the UK did not slip into another recession.

As Geoff would tell you, whether the country was in a recession or not is the not the most important factor - the economy's sluggish growth should be the paramount concern and the word 'recession' has become more of a political tool.  In the upcoming exams, students should remember that the avoidance of a double-dip or triple-dip is fairly irrelevant - the overall performance is the key indicator and there is still plenty to be worried about.

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