Without looking at Table, return to Figure. If we define a recession as a significant decline in national output, can you identify any post-1960 recessions in addition to the 2008-2009 recession? (This requires a judgment call.)
Two other major recessions are visible in the figure as slight dips: those of 1973–1975, and 1981–1982. Two other recessions appear in the figure as a flattening of the path of real GDP. These were in 1990–1991 and 2001.
According to Table, how often have recessions occurred since the end of World War II (1945)?
11 recessions in approximately 70 years averages about one recession every six years.
According to Table, how long has the average recession lasted since the end of World War II?
The table lists the “Months of Contraction” for each recession. Averaging these figures for the post-WWII recessions gives an average duration of 11 months, or slightly less than a year.
According to Table, how long has the average expansion lasted since the end of World War II?
The table lists the “Months of Expansion.” Averaging these figures for the post-WWII expansions gives an average expansion of 60.5 months, or more than five years.