The U.S. economy in all but name is in a recession, and so is the rest of the world.

The Atlanta Fed’s GDPNow projection estimates a 34.9% decline in second-quarter gross domestic product on an annualized basis, and jobless claims show that a fifth of the working population filed for unemployment benefits since the coronvirus crisis started.

So the question of when the economy will recover is an important but obviously challenging task.

Torsten Slok, the chief economist of Deutsche Bank Securities, on Thursday took a stab at estimating when the U.S. economy would recover to pre-COVID-19 levels by looking at restaurant bookings.

He used data from online booking platform OpenTable from Texas, Tennessee and Georgia where restaurant activity is now permitted, to project

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