"There is always a tendency to inflate our perception of current economic woes," Hamilton notes. "This is especially true if there is little understanding of the past." Kind of like when my kids start complaining they're "bored" three hours into a power outage. Hamilton goes on to explain: "Over the past 40 years, the average time between the growth of GDP after a recession and recovery in employment is approximately 19 months. This means we are doing slightly worse than average."
Based on his timeline, the economy began contracting in December 2007, with GDP growth returning in June 2009. So if you thought the economy was getting an F in job growth, take heart: It's more like a C. And the final report card is still to come.