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June 24, 2014

Tomorrow's Revised First Quarter GDP Figure Could Be As Grim as -2.0%

It's expected to be negative 1.8%. Recall it was first estimated as +0.1%, then revised way down to -1.0%. Now they think it will be nearly -2.0%.

And it could be worse.

You will not be surprised that the AP has filed an early report, pre-spinning the number that everyone expects to be terrible.

And you will not be surprised they think it's just swell.

A GRIM US ECONOMIC PICTURE IS BRIGHTENING

!!!

BY CHRISTOPHER S. RUGABER AND MARTIN CRUTSINGER AP ECONOMICS WRITERS

When the government updates its estimate Wednesday of how the U.S. economy fared last quarter, the number is pretty sure to be ugly. Horrible even.

The economy likely shrank at an annual rate of nearly 2 percent in the January-March quarter, economists estimate. That would be its bleakest performance since early 2009 in the depths of the Great Recession.

So why aren't economists, businesses or investors likely to panic?

Because most agree that the economy last quarter was depressed by temporary factors -- particularly the blast of Arctic chill and snow that shuttered factories, disrupted shipping and kept Americans away from shopping malls and auto dealerships.

Since then, the picture has brightened. Solid hiring, growth in manufacturing and surging auto sales have lifted the economy at a steady if still-unspectacular pace.

What I imagine is this: The number will be revised down to -1.4%. The economists' "estimate" of the number has been pushed further down by deliberate chatter from Obama-friendly whisperers who want economists to push their own guesses down so that when the number comes in at -1.4% instead of -1.8%, they can say, "Wasn't that bad at all! Why, just look -- We actually gained almost half a point of growth overnight!!!! That's pretty awesome, isn't it?!"

ConArtCritic & his Math Gangsters are tabulating the numbers from the Cochran/McDaniel runoff, in the post below -- but I wanted to get up another post while we await the next round of numbers.


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posted by Ace at 08:07 PM

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