Double-Dip Recession: Previous Experience and Current Prospect [December 3, 2010] [open pdf - 159KB]
From the Document: "Concerns have been expressed that the United States may be about to experience a 'double-dip' recession. A double-dip or W-shaped recession occurs when the economy emerges from a recession, has a short period of growth, but then falls back into recession. This prospect raises policy questions about the current level of economic stimulus and whether added stimulus may be needed. The pace of the recovery has been below average and is decelerating, falling from a 5% to a 1.7% annual average rate of growth between the fourth quarter of 2009 and the second quarter of 2010. Other indicators, such as high unemployment, falling house prices, reduced flows of credit, and the prospect of fading fiscal stimulus, are also worrisome. Double-dip recessions are rare. [...] This report discusses factors suggesting an increased risk of double-dip recession. It discusses other factors that suggest economic recovery will continue. The U.S. historical experience with double-dip recessions is also presented. It examines the role of deleveraging by households and businesses in the aftermath of the recent financial crisis in shaping the likely pace of economic recovery. The report concludes with a look at current economic projections."
CRS Report for Congress, R41444