Quarterly Business Report: Goldilocks Gone

TIME's Board of Economists sees a slowdown. Growth recession? The real thing? Stay tuned

What's the difference between a business slowdown, a so-called growth recession and a real recession (classically defined as two consecutive quarters or more of negative growth)? Through most of the increasingly boomy 1990s, American businessmen, workers and consumers by and large would have answered, Who cares? None of the three versions of economic contraction registered even as blips on the national radar screen. But brace yourself: it may be time to make those painful distinctions. The consensus of TIME's Board of Economists, which convened recently in Manhattan to assess the outlook through next year, is that the issue is no longer...

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