BEA Raises 3rd Quarter 2012 GDP Growth Estimate To 2.67%

In their second estimate of the US GDP for the third quarter of 2012 the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) found that the economy was growing at a 2.67% annualized rate, an upward revision of +0.65% from the previously published first estimate for the quarter.

The improved headline number came exclusively from two sources: substantial [...]

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Revision Ups Q2 2012 GDP Growth … Slightly: No Real Change

In their first revision to their estimate of the second quarter 2012 GDP, the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) found that the annualized rate of U.S. domestic economic growth was 1.73%, up 0.19% from their initial estimate — but still down about a quarter of a percent from the 1.97% reported for the prior quarter [...]

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Manufacturing Contracts — Again

Information received since the Federal Open Market Committee met in June suggests that economic activity decelerated somewhat over the first half of this year. 

This is the first line of the FOMC minutes announced today which shows that, if nothing else, the Fed is the master of understatement.

Today, as if to underscore the [...]

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GDP Q2 2012: A Picture Of A Stagnating Economy

In their first estimate of the second quarter 2012 GDP, the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) found that the annualized rate of U.S. domestic economic growth was 1.54%, down nearly a half percent from the (revised) 1.97% for the prior quarter and down over two and a half percent from the (revised) 4.10% growth rate [...]

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Rising Consumer Debt Reveals Economic Weakness

Consumer credit expanded at a 10.2% annual rate in March. Of that, nonrevolving credit grew 11.3%. This “includes automobile loans and all other loans not included in revolving credit, such as loans for mobile homes, education, boats, trailers, or vacations.” Revolving loans, mainly credit card debt, grew at 7.8%. For the Fed’s G19 report go here.

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Stockman On The Economy

This is a recent AP interview with “our own” David Stockman.

Q: Why are you so down on the U.S. economy?

A: It’s become super-saturated with debt.

Typically the private and public sectors would borrow $1.50 or $1.60 each year for every $1 of GDP growth. That was the golden constant. It had been at that ratio for [...]

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Democrats: Half Full; Republicans: Half Empty

Do you think the economy is growing? If you are a Democrat—yes. If you are a Republican—no. This is why these polls don’t mean much. If they did then if everyone thought happy thoughts, then the economy would be OK? 

Anyway, this poll from Gallup showed that now more folks think the economy is growing:

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Gasoline Use and NFIB Survey Still Recessionary

Is the rising stock market correctly foreshadowing economic growth of a muddle-through nature with “risks” skewed to the upside?  The latest MasterCard gasoline usage data casts doubt that much has been happening in that regard in a Bloomberg.com article titled U.S. Gasoline Use Sinks 14% to Seven-Year Low, MasterCard Says:

Fuel use fell below a [...]

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Q2 2011 GDP Revised Upward

The final calculation of Q2 GDP was +1.3%. The advance estimate was 1.3%, the second estimate was 1.0%, and the final is back to the original. The revisions had to do with the following:

The increase in real GDP in the second quarter primarily reflected positive contributions from nonresidential fixed investment, personal consumption expenditures (PCE), [...]

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Modest Retail Sales But Confidence Sinking Like A Stone

Retail sales figures from the Census Bureau reported modest increases for the month of July:

U.S. retail and food services sales for July … were $390.4 billion, an increase of 0.5 percent (±0.5%) from the previous month, and 8.5 percent (±0.7%) above July 2010. Total sales for the May through July 2011 period were up [...]

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Why GDP Is Useless and Deceptive: There Was No Recovery

We have not recovered from the Great Recession and thus our current economic stagnation is less a new event than a continuation of the original collapse. The basis for the so-called “recovery” was a rise in GDP, that measure of what we have spent in the economy. It’s a fairly useless bit of data.

As [...]

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