A buzz word that describes the recession that started on December 2007 in terms of the Great Depression of the 1930s. Generally, the Great Recession lasted longer and was more severe than prior recessions. However, the severity of economic decline has not eclipsed the levels reached by the Great Depression.
For example, prior recessions lasted for about 16 months, whereas the Great Recession lasted well over 20 months. This is still much shorter than the decade-long Great Depression.
Likewise, comparing the number of bank failures in both timeframes shows that the Great Depression was much worse. During the Great Recession, less than 1% of banks failed, whereas during the Great Depression close to 50% of all banks in the U.S. failed.