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The Great Recession, in one animated GIF

The Great Recession is firmly in the rear view mirror at this point, and after a nearly five-year slog of a recovery, it can be easy to forget just how bad it got.

The below GIF, captured from an interactive map created by consulting firm TIP Strategies, is a great illustration of the sudden, painful job losses of the recession and the very gradual return to job growth thereafter.

city job loss gif

Though the above GIF only covers 2006 through the present, the full version allows you to slide to and from any particular point in time from 1999 to 2014. The bubbles show US metro areas' job gains or losses, relative to 12 months earlier — red is losses, blue is gains.