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It places particular emphasis on measures that refer to the total economy rather than to particular sectors.These include a measure of monthly GDP that has been developed by the private forecasting firm Macroeconomic Advisers, measures of monthly GDP and GDI that have been developed by two members of the committee in independent research (James Stock and Mark Watson, (available here), real personal income excluding transfers, the payroll and household measures of total employment, and aggregate hours of work in the total economy.Rather, the committee determined only that the recession ended and a recovery began in that month.A recession is a period of falling economic activity spread across the economy, lasting more than a few months, normally visible in real GDP, real income, employment, industrial production, and wholesale-retail sales.The second was that real GDI is a more comprehensive measure of income than real personal income less transfers, as it includes additional sources of income such as undistributed corporate profits.The committee's use of income-side measures, notably real GDI, is based on the accounting principle that the value of output equals the sum of the incomes that arise from producing the output.In both the 2001- cycles, household employment also reached its trough later than the NBER trough date.

In 2009, the NBER trough date is 6 months before the trough in payroll employment.

Apart from a random statistical discrepancy, real GDI satisfies that equality while real personal income does not.

The committee also maintains a quarterly chronology of business cycle peak and trough dates.

Real GDP reached its low point in the second quarter of 2009, while the value of real GDI was essentially identical in the second and third quarters of 2009.

The average of real GDP and real GDI reached its low point in the second quarter of 2009.