Recovery Still Far Off Despite Signs of Easing: Feldstein

Despite signs that the recession is easing, the economy still has a long way to go before it recovers, well-known economist Martin Feldstein told CNBC in a live interview.

"I see very few positives," said Feldstein, former chief economist for President Reagan and now president emeritus of the National Bureau of Economic Research. "Things are falling a little more slowly, but that doesn't mean they're going to start turning up anytime soon. So I think the people who are forecasting an upturn in September—I don't see that as the beginning of a sustainable, permanent expansion."

His comments echoed those made two weeks ago in another CNBC interview, when he said the economy is headed for a “very long and damaging economic downturn” that will not see any recovery in 2009.

Feldstein also reiterated his view that President Obama’s stimulus plan won't solve the nation's economic problems.

"I think we'll see a temporary increase when the stimulus comes on," he said. "But it won't be sustained."

Feldstein also expressed skepticism about the government's plan to do "stress tests" on the nation's largest 19 banks.

"I'm not sure we're going to get an absolutely honest take from stress testing," he said