Economists say recession ended in June 2009

Many people will continue to struggle.

Unemployment usually keeps rising well after a recession ends. Four months after the 2007 downturn ended, unemployment spiked to 10.1 percent in October 2009, which was the highest in just over a quarter-century. Some economists believe that marked the high point in joblessness. But others think it could climb higher — perhaps hitting 10.3 percent by early next year.

After the 2001 recession, for instance, unemployment didn’t peak until June 2003 — 19 months later.

Word of the recession’s official end comes just two months before Election Day. But the decision isn’t likely to play a big role in November’s congressional and gubernatorial elections.

Some Democrats might hail it as a sign of progress, but voters are guided by gut reactions far more than economists’ pronouncements.

With unemployment still hovering just below 10 percent, some Democrats have urged Mr. Obama to stop boasting about any economic progress at all. They fear it annoys people who feel things are not getting better for themselves and their neighbors, and it makes politicians seem out of touch with ordinary Americans’ worries.

Associated Press writer Chuck Babington contributed to this report.

 

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