The 2001 recession differed from previous recessions in several ways. First, it was quite mild in terms of its associated contractions in output and consumption. Also, since total hours worked fell sharply, labor productivity remained relatively high. Furthermore, while business fixed investment plummeted (actually, much more than in a typical recession), residential investment and purchases of durable goods remained surprisingly strong. This is highly unusual: Typically, residential investment and purchases of durable goods collapse during recessions, often leading the general contraction in economic activity by several quarters.