The recession in 2001 was much more shallow than the Great Recession that began in December 2007. According to the Bureau of Economic Research, the 2001 recession officially lasted eight months versus 18 months for the Great Recession. From peak to trough, the economy shed 2.7 million jobs in the early 2000s versus 8.75 million jobs as a result of the Great Recession.

Equally as divergent was the concentration of job losses based on company size. While companies with 1 to 19 employees accounted for 8% of the 2.75 million jobs lost as a result of the 2001 recession, they represented 26% of the jobs losses stemming from the Great Recession. Companies with 500 or more employees accounted for 53% of all jobs losses in the 2001 recession and its aftermath compared with 39% in the Great Recession.