The White House is currently in an all-out panic, desperately pushing propaganda in an effort to change what defines a recession ahead of an economic report which could reveal the U.S. is experiencing just that.
A recession is normally defined as two consecutive quarters of economic shrinkage, and the U.S. economy shrank 1.6% in the first quarter of 2022.
The overwhelming consensus is that we will see another contraction in the second quarter, with the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta’s GDPNow predicting a -1.6% quarter, meeting the standard definition of a recession.
Just days ahead of the Bureau of Economic Analysis’ second quarter number reveal, the White House is apparently trying to change the definition of a recession to deceive Americans into believing everything is fine and dandy.
In one example, the White House Council for Economic Advisers published a blog post denying the definition:
“What is a recession? While some maintain that two consecutive quarters of falling real GDP constitute a recession, that is neither the official definition nor the way economists evaluate the state of the business cycle. Instead, both official determinations of recessions and economists’ assessment of economic activity are based on a holistic look at the data—including the labor market, consumer and business spending, industrial production, and incomes. Based on these data, it is unlikely that the decline in GDP in the first quarter of this year—even if followed by another GDP decline in the second quarter—indicates a recession.”
Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen then claimed during an appearance on NBC that if the U.S. economy shrank in Q2, then that does not necessarily mean the U.S. is experiencing a recession.
“I do want to emphasize: What a recession really means is a broad-based contraction in the economy. And even if that number is negative, we are not in a recession now. And I would, you know, warn that we should be not characterizing that as a recession.” Yellen said.
“I understand that, but you’re splitting hairs,” anchor Chuck Todd interjected. “I mean, if the technical definition is two quarters of contraction, you’re saying that’s not a recession?”
“That’s not the technical definition,” Yellen tried to assert. “There’s an organization called the National Bureau of Economic Research that looks at a broad range of data in deciding whether or not there is a recession. And most of the data that they look at right now continues to be strong. I would be amazed if the NBER would declare this period to be a recession, even if it happens to have two quarters of negative growth.”
Brian Deese, director of the National Economic Council, echoed Yellen’s claims during an interview with CNN, saying, “In terms of the technical definition, [two negative quarters of growth] is not a recession. The technical definition considers a much broader spectrum of data points.”
President Joe Biden dismissed talk of a potential recession all-together when questioned by Fox News White House reporter Peter Doocy.
“Mr. President, we’re getting GDP numbers on Thursday, how worried should Americans be that we could be in a recession?”
“We’re not gonna be in a recession, in my view,” Biden replied, speaking over Zoom because of his recent diagnosis of COVID-19.
“The [un]employment rate is still one of the lowest we’ve had in history, it’s in the 3.6 [percent] area. We still find ourselves with people investing. My hope is we go from this rapid growth to steady growth, so we’ll see some coming down. But I don’t think we’re going to, God willing, I don’t think we’re going to see a recession.”