The amazing shrinking economy

It’s official: We are suffering through the worst recession in at least 50 years.

Feel better? I don’t.

According to this story by Bloomberg, the U.S. Gross Domestic Product fell at a 6.1 percent annual rate in the first quarter. That was even worse than originally forecast, and it follows a 6.3 drop in the final three months of 2008.

To make things even gloomier, the Bloomberg story quotes Richard Berner, the chief economist at Morgan Stanley in New York City, as saying that the country will rebound from the recession very slowly, and that the recovery will be a weak one. Way to cheer everyone up, Berner!

Of course, most people don’t need the Commerce Department to tell them that this is one bad recession. They only have to look at their dwindling paychecks, their soon-to-end unemployment benefits or the bills they’re struggling to pay.