18 Recessions in 90 Years
According to the National Bureau of Economic Research, the United States has had 18(!) recessions in the last 90 years - one every five years. Please be aware that one of the reasons America adopted the Central Banking system was to stablize the business cycle. In this respect, a reasonable person must conclude that the Federal Reserve has failed.
From a contrarian perspective, not all recessions are created equal and many of the recessions of the 20th century were minor, with a few notable exceptions. It is also true that the 19th century also had many recessions, about the same average of one every 5 years or so. Although it is difficult to accumulate accurate economic data for the 19th century (or any period with government collected data), we are now seeing that certain presumed disasters were quite mild in retrospect. The "Long Depression" of the 1870s is now nearly universally regarded as a period of tremendous prosperity and growth, contrary to the original academic view that focused only on a contraction in the money supply, and assumed therefore that the economy was stagnant. It turns out, the economy grew during the 1870s despite monetary contraction. Academic historians are left to lament supposed wealth inequalities as if merely mentioning that some people have more than others is enough to cast a shadow on any era. Socialists are so pathetic.
The recessions (or worse) of the 20th century are as follows:
Perhaps we can not stabilitze the business cycle by manipulating monetary policy and interest rates. It seems to be a preponderous intrusion on our liberty and our Constitution for such meager results (if you can even call them that.) If we can't "stabilize" the business cycle, perhaps we should look at alternatives that don't result in a revokation of property rights, increased militariztion and police statism, increased lobbying, and decreasing purchasing power. That is quite the high price for such a small return.
David in Qatar