Don't Say the D Word

No, we're not about to relive the 1930s. But we may have to expand our economic vocabulary

Joe Raedle / Getty

People look at the "hot jobs" list at employment help center Workforce One in Miami on Dec. 5

It was only on the first of December that we finally got formal permission — from the Business Cycle Dating Committee of the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) — to call what the U.S. economy is experiencing a recession. Just a few days later, after the Labor Department announced that U.S. employers shed 533,000 jobs in November and 1.2 million since August, some were agitating to ditch the R word and replace it with the more ominous D one. "Shall we call it a depression now?" asked former Labor Secretary Robert Reich. "The threat of a...

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