With Revisions, Recovery Winter Looks Even Better

Remember “recovery winter,” when a whole bunch of pundits (well, OK, it was me) were excited about a real recovery that then didn’t materialize, leaving us scrambling to blame the Federal Reserve? Well, as Brad Plumer’s GDP revisions chart (above) shows the good times were even better than we knew at the time.

The fourth quarter of 2011 delivered an actual catch-up recovery level of real output growth—4 percent!—and then we went back to going sideways.