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Friday, October 29, 2010

GDP Bounces... Still Below Trend

The WSJ details:

The U.S. economy expanded at a slightly faster pace in the third quarter as consumer spending inched up, but growth remains too weak to cut unemployment any time soon.

Gross domestic product, the value of all goods and services produced, rose at an annual rate of 2.0% after climbing 1.7% in the second quarter, the Commerce Department said Friday. Economists polled by Dow Jones Newswires were expecting GDP to rise by 2.1% in the July to September period.

The government report was the last significant economic indicator before midterm elections Nov. 2 and a Federal Reserve meeting ending Nov. 3. More than a year after the recession ended, stubbornly high unemployment could hurt Democrats in Congress and is likely to be a key factor in getting the Fed to resume bond purchases.

The GDP breakdown showed that spending by Americans, accounting for about 70% of demand in the U.S. economy, rose at a 2.6% rate. That's up from a 2.2% increase in the April to June period and a 1.9% in the first quarter.

Source: BEA