GDP report shows economy even weaker than expected 

In another sign of economic weakness, the gross domestic product grew at a lower than expected 1.3 percent during the second quarter, and the already weak first quarter number was revised downward to an anemic 0.4 percent, the Commerce Department reported today.

Economists, who had already been scaling back their economic forecasts, were expecting 1.8 percent. And back in April, the advance first quarter GDP estimate was also 1.8 percent.

In a typically economic recovery, GDP growth is supposed to be a lot higher, because comparisons to the prior period are easier. For instance, during the comparable quarters of the Reagan presidency in 1983, the recovering economy grew at 5.1 percent and 9.3 percent, respectively.

Needless to say, this is more bad news for President Obama's reelection chances. Also, with the economy this weak, one wonders if this will put the payroll tax cut  extension back in play as part of the debt limit negotiations end game.

 

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Philip Klein

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