Billionaire investor Warren Buffett warned on Thursday that his "common sense" measures of the economy indicated that the US was still in a recession.
Buffett, a revered figure on Wall Street, told business network CNBC that the United States would not be out of its downturn until real per capita gross domestic product returned to levels seen before the deep recession began in late 2007.
"On any common-sense definition, the average American is below where he was before ... in terms of real income," Buffett told the network. "We're still in a recession, and we're not going to be out of it for a while, but we will get out of it."
Buffett, owner of Berkshire Hathaway and legendary for his astute investing, was commenting after the National Bureau of Economic Research, considered an arbiter of US business cycles, declared this week that the longest recession since World War II ended in June 2009.
Forbes magazine's list of the richest Americans, published earlier on Thursday, put Buffett in second place with 45 billion dollars, behind only Microsoft founder Bill Gates.