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Economists pronounce the recession over

NEW YORK – Aug. 13, 2009 – The majority of economists surveyed by the Wall Street Journal say the recession is over and Federal Reserve Chair Ben Bernanke deserves another term.

Of the 47 economists the newspaper surveyed, 27 said the recession has ended and 11 predict another trough this month or next. The rest refused to commit. But they were nearly unanimous in saying that Bernanke should be rehired.

“He deserves a lot of credit for stabilizing the financial markets,” says Joseph Carson of AllianceBernstein. “Confidence in recovery would be damaged if he was not reappointed.”

Poll respondents believe Bernanke has more than a 70 percent chance of being asked by President Barack Obama to remain at the helm of the central bank.

Gross domestic product is expected to grow 2.4 percent in the third quarter at a seasonally adjusted annual rate. Economists were also heartened by a better-than-expected jobless report in July.