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If Martin Feldstein, a member of the National Bureau of Economic Research is right about the unemployment rate surpassing 8 percent, then we could expect consumer spending to slow further, pushing more retail chains into bankruptcy.
The NBER is the organization that officially determines whether the US economy has fallen into a recession. Although Feldstein is only one of its 8 members, I find it particularly interesting that he said the US recession is just beginning. I think that we are halfway into the recession.
The NBER has yet to officially recognize the recession and his comments are a step in that direction.
Officially recognized business cycles and expansions by NBER