Great news! According to many stories in the media, the Great Recession is officially over. Woohoo! Start celebrating and spending wildly on credit!
Okay, don't do that. Of course, this story is good news, but it won't necessarily have an impact on your wallet.
The official end of the longest recession in since the Great Depression was declared by the National Bureau of Economic Research. According to the NBER, the recession officially lasted from December 2007 - June 2009. The NBER does believe that there is the possibility of a Double Dip recession, however. The NBER also doesn't pretend that this means all economic pain is over - significant troubles remain, but it believes that the economy has been growing since June.
So what does this report actually mean? The economy has been growing since June and a double dip recession remains a possibility (one that economists seem to be putting in the 20-40% range). More than anything else, however, this report is likely to provide a psychological boost.
What it doesn't mean anything for, however, are the millions of Americans that are currently out of work. At the moment, the unemployment rate is 9.6% across America and 9.3% in Pennsylvania. Somehow, I don't think the official "end of the recession" means much to them.