The Bureau of Economic Analysis issued a statement today reporting that GDP increased in the third quarter. Normally, that would mean the recession is over. Obviously, the pain is not over yet, and we are no where near a level of output that we had before the recession began. Another concern is that the third quarter may be something of an anomoly because auto sales surged with the "cash for clunkers" program. Real personal consumption expenditures rose 3.4 percent while durable goods increases 22.3 percent.
The figures are preliminary and may be adjusted when more data become available in late November.