Congressman Erik Paulsen On GDP Growth: "America’s Economy Is Really Taking Off"

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Growth from April through June was the fastest in almost four years, since the economy expanded at a 5.1 percent pace in the second quarter of 2014 and a 4.9 percent clip the following quarter.

Lindsay Walters, a White House spokeswoman, said the president wasn't briefed in advance on Friday's economic report.

Analysts said consumer spending and exporters helped boost the numbers, as Americans spent their Trump-signed tax cuts, and manufacturers who rushed to get their products delivered ahead of retaliatory tariffs.

Most independent economists say this quarter's growth was juiced by stimulus from the trillion-dollar tax cut and a one-time rush by foreign companies to stock up on us goods before Trump's trade war escalated and tariffs kicked in on many products.

In a big win for the Trump administration on Friday, the US economy advanced at its fastest pace since 2014. Now, the growth rate is around seven percent. Note, too, that the trade war with the European Union is on hold and that the future for soybean exports now seems rosy (elsewhere, the Post, borrowing from Nancy "Crumbs" Pelosi's play book, writes off this good news as "beans").

"We're getting explosive growth in the second quarter because of trade", economist Ellen Zentner of Morgan Stanley tells the Times.

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Beyond that, while the Trump administration insists this isn't just a short-term sugar rush, many economists still expect growth to slow significantly by 2020.

The quarterly growth is the fastest since the third quarter of 2014 and provides President Trump and Republicans a boost as they make the economy a key part of their campaign message heading into November's midterm elections. Spending on structures advanced 13.3 percent following a 13.9 percent gain in the prior period, while equipment investment cooled to 3.9 percent and intellectual property spending slowed to 8.2 percent. Residential investment contracted at a 1.1 percent rate, the fourth decline in five quarters.

The report showed imports rose only 0.5 per cent, the smallest increase in two and a half years. There was also a front-loading of exports of other goods in the second quarter. In his IL speech, Trump credited his tariffs with boosting the economy and helping the Granite City steel plant reopen, Fox reports.

The growth rate over the past 12 months has been 2.8 percent - strong but not unprecedented in the current recovery.

"Real consumer spending rebounded, as expected, at a 4.0 percent pace, with gains in durable and nondurable goods as well as services". A bump in federal government spending also added to the pickup in growth this spring as Congress approved additional money for the military and domestic programs. After- tax incomes adjusted for inflation increased at a 2.6 percent annual pace, after 4.4 percent in the prior quarter. The saving rate fell to 6.8 per cent from 7.2 per cent. "Look at the average for the first two quarters, it's now 3.2 percent".

That is the second quarter in a row the measure, known as core PCE, has hit or exceeded the Fed's 2% target, and is likely to keep the central bank on track with its plans to raise interest rates gradually.