Marketplace has a new podcast for kids, "Million Bazillion!" EPISODE OUT NOW

U.S. productivity plummeted in Q4, and reopening the economy might be why

Mar 4, 2021
The measure fell at the steepest rate in 40 years, but that might not be as ominous as it sounds — if the trend is short term.
Less productive businesses like restaurants have started to reopen, which may be causing national productivity data to decline.
Scott Heins/Getty Images

What is a contraction exactly?

Nov 1, 2019
The National Bureau of Economic Research’s Business Cycle Dating Committee makes the call.
A contraction is an unofficial term for an economic slowdown.
Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images