The U.S. economy is in the fourth year of a recovery that started in June 2009. The fact that the economy is in recovery, even modestly, is something of a miracle given how stacked the deck is against it.
This is absolutely unique in American economic history: There has never been a recovery without the housing market expanding substantially as well; There has never been a recovery with state and local governments shrinking for three years in a row; There has never been a recovery with households owing, on average, well more than 100 percent of their after-tax income in debt.
Yet even with all three of these dogging us, we have avoided slipping back into recession.
Weller, Christian, "Struggling Recovery and Economic Policy Uncertainty: Testimony Before the Joint Revenue Hearing, House and Senate Ways and Means Committees, Massachusetts State House, Boston, MA" (2012). Public Policy and Public Affairs Faculty Publication Series. 46.