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Recession Despite all the recession talk recently, the economy apparently isn't doing so badly. The Commerce department today (4.27) announced that GDP grew at a 2.0% annual rate in the first quarter. This was up from 1% in the final quarter of 2000. The 2% rate is still slower than this time last year, but it seems as though a recession has been avoided for another quarter. (A recession is often defined by 2 or more quarters of negative growth, click here for more on the definition of a recession). This means that the current expansion has lasted for an even ten years - the trough of the recession in the early 1990's came in March of 1991. Caution: Revisions The number that was released is the "advance GDP report" and is subject to revision. In the last two quarter of 2000, the final release was slightly lower than the advance number - so it's possible - but very unlikely - that we will be dipping below the zero mark. On average preliminary real GDP is revised by 0.6 points to reach the final measure - in 90 percent of the cases the revision (advance to final) was between - 0.9 to 1.3. (See table) Revisions to Real GDP Average 2/3 of revisions 90% of revisions Advance to preliminary 0.5 -0.5 to 0.7 -0.9 to 1.2 Advance to final 0.6 -0.6 to 0.9 -0.9 to 1.3 Preliminary to final 0.3 -0.4 to 0.4 -0.5 to 0.6 Advance to latest 1.

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