Despite the economy being in recovery, businesses are still struggling, and it could be years before output returns to pre-recession levels, according to Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland president and chief executive officer Sandra Pianalto.

“The recovery from the recession may also end up being one of the longest in our history. In fact, it may take years just to get back to the level of output we enjoyed in 2007, just before the economic crisis began,” Pianalto said at the Dayton, Ohio, Chamber of Commerce, according to a prepared text of the speech released by the Fed.

“Some of you may think I am being too pessimistic,” she said. “After all, we saw a strong [gross domestic product] growth estimate for the fourth quarter of last year — nearly 6% at an annual rate. But I think that figure overstates the underlying strength of our economy.”

Pianalto also addressed the concerns about inflation, saying future inflation predictors remain at low levels.

Subscribe Now

Independent and authoritative analysis and perspective for the bond buying industry.

14-Day Free Trial

No credit card required. Complete access to articles, breaking news and industry data.