There is no single, widely accepted definition for an Economic Depression. The most common call is a deep recession, a GDP loss of about 10% or unemployment above 15%. Some will tell you that it’s a long recession, 6 quarters or more of loss. I’ve argued that it’s nothing more than the unusual event of a sudden and dramatic drop in money supply, an event that has now happened about 5 times in the history of the USofA (1812, 1857, 1893, 1929, and 2008). A few people insist that there is only one Depression, The Depression, starting around 1929.
What if we’re all wrong? What if the best definition of all has little to do with money or other numbers in a table, but with people – what they do and how it all connects together?