In testimony before a Congressional committee on Tuesday, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke warned lawmakers that the economic recovery U.S. "is close to faltering." Bernanke said the central bank was prepared to do more to bolster the economy, but that Congress needed to do more to encourage growth. In June, Bernanke had said, "growth seems likely to pick up in the second half of the year." Bernanke's grim assessment comes after the economy barely grew in the first half of the year, and there were no new jobs in August. Consumer confidence fell this summer to the lowest point since the recession.
Peter Spiegel, Brussels bureau chief with the Financial Times, looks at whether the U.S. could be headed for a double-dip recession, or even a depression.