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BUSINESS
March 27, 2010 | Bloomberg News
The fastest pace of economic growth in six years during the final three months of 2009 fueled a surge in corporate profits that may set the stage for job gains and a broadening of the U.S. recovery. Company earnings increased 8% in the fourth quarter, capping the biggest year-over-year gain in 25 years, figures from the Commerce Department showed Friday. The economy expanded at a 5.6% annual rate. "The fact that you see a sustained recovery in profits over the last four quarters, that's a vote of confidence that the next phase of the recovery could be upon us," said Jonathan Basile, an economist at Credit Suisse in New York.
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BUSINESS
December 20, 2013 | By Don Lee
WASHINGTON -- U.S. economic growth in the third quarter was revised sharply higher, to a healthy annual rate of 4.1%, thanks to stronger consumer spending and nonresidential investment than previously thought. Commerce Department officials had previously estimated that the nation's gross domestic product, or total value of goods and services produced, expanded 3.6% in the July-to-September period. The revised data released Friday indicate that last quarter's GDP growth rate was the fastest since the end of 2011, and importantly, that there was broader economic momentum heading into the final months of the year than believed.
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BUSINESS
September 11, 2012 | By Tiffany Hsu
Tech geeks and average consumers alike are quivering in anticipation of Apple's expected unveiling Wednesday of the iPhone 5. Speculation is raging. Will the rumored smartphone kill the PC? Will it be affordable? Or, as Twitter user Tanmay Bhat puts it: “We as the human race must collectively ask ourselves -- Is our second kidney really that important?" But analysts at J.P.Morgan have an even more intriguing question: “Can one little phone affect GDP?” QUIZ: Test your Apple knowledge Chief economist Michael Feroli believes sales of the smartphone could potentially add as much as half a percentage point to annualized gross domestic product growth in the fourth quarter.
BUSINESS
November 19, 2013 | By Richard Verrier
The economic contributions of U.S. copyright industries reached new heights last year, for the first time contributing more than $1 trillion to the gross domestic product and accounting for 6.5% of the nation's economy, according to a new report. The study tracks the economic effect and contributions of U.S. industries engaged in the creation and distribution of computer software, video games, books, newspapers, periodicals and journals, as well as motion pictures, music, radio and television programming.
BUSINESS
July 31, 2010 | By Don Lee, Los Angeles Times
U.S. economic growth slowed sharply in the spring, stoking concerns about a weak job market, a drawn-out struggle for the unemployed and growing financial pressures on millions of American families. The nation's gross domestic product grew at an annualized rate of 2.4% in the second quarter, falling from an upwardly revised 3.7% expansion in the first three months of the year, the Commerce Department said Friday. While many economists had expected growth to moderate, the reported decline was a jolting 35% below the previous quarter.
BUSINESS
January 27, 2012 | By Don Lee
The American economy ended a year of mostly disappointments with modestly stronger growth, but still less than what was hoped for by many analysts. The nation's gross domestic product -- the total value of goods and services produced in the U.S. -- rose 2.8% in the fourth quarter from the prior quarter, the Commerce Department reported Friday. While that was an acceleration from the feeble growth rate of 1.8% in the summer, the latest GDP figure was below the 3% that most analysts were projecting.
BUSINESS
November 23, 2011 | By Jeffry Bartash
The U.S. economy grew at a slower pace than originally estimated in the third quarter, mainly because companies reduced inventories and did not invest as much. The Commerce Department cut its calculation of gross domestic product to 2% growth in the July-to-September period from an initial reading of 2.5%. Economists surveyed by MarketWatch expected the government to trim its estimate to 2.3%. Still, the 2% growth rate was the fastest since the fourth quarter of 2010. Most economists predict that the U.S. economy will grow even faster in the final three months of this year — 2.5% based on the latest MarketWatch forecast.
BUSINESS
January 30, 2010 | By Don Lee
The U.S. economy grew in the fourth quarter of 2009 at the fastest pace in six years, but many economists and business owners remained unconvinced that a full-scale recovery was underway or that substantial job growth would soon follow. The nation's total production of goods and services expanded at a heady 5.7% annual rate in the final three months of last year, the Commerce Department said Friday in its first estimate of the quarter's gross domestic product. That's more than double the 2.2% growth rate in the third quarter and a dramatic turnaround from the first three months of last year, when the economy was mired in deep recession and the GDP shrank at a 6.4% annual rate.
BUSINESS
January 28, 2012 | By Don Lee, Los Angeles Times
The U.S. economy ended last year on firmer footing with modestly stronger growth. But output fell short of what analysts expected, and signs point to weakness ahead. The gross domestic product rose at a 2.8% annual rate in the fourth quarter as consumers bought more cars and other goods, the Commerce Department said Friday. That was below the 3% figure many analysts had projected. But it was up from a feeble 1.8% the quarter before. But the reason for the faster growth wasn't encouraging: More than half resulted from businesses increasing their stockpiles of products rather than from sales of goods and services, which reflect actual demand.
BUSINESS
February 26, 2011 | By Jim Puzzanghera, Los Angeles Times
In another indication that recovery from the recession is struggling, U.S. economic growth for the final three months of last year has been revised downward to 2.8% by government statisticians. This amid concerns that turmoil in the Middle East will cause further problems. The Commerce Department had previously estimated that the nation's economic output, or gross domestic product, for the fourth quarter of 2010 had been 3.2%. That figure was a significant improvement over the 2.6% annualized growth rate in the third quarter of the year.
BUSINESS
June 10, 2013 | By Shan Li
All states in the U.S., with the exception of Connecticut, saw growth in gross domestic product last year, a new study says. Leading the way was North Dakota, where a wealth of oil fueled by fracking in the Bakken Shale has led to boom times and a 13.4% jump in GDP, according to a Bureau of Economic Analysis report. That far exceeds the average U.S. GDP -- known as real GDP -- which clocked in at 2.5% last year, a slight jump from the 1.6% growth experienced in 2011. Connecticut was the only state to show a GDP decline of 0.1%, where government cutbacks and turmoil in the financial and real estate businesses have hurt the state's chances of bouncing back.
BUSINESS
April 16, 2013 | By Michael Hiltzik
Harvard economists Ken Rogoff and Carmen Reinhart, authors of a widely-cited paper suggesting that high government debt levels lead to low growth -- have responded defensively to a new paper suggesting that their results were due to mathematical and software errors. I reported on the controversy , which is burning up the econ wonk world, earlier today. The original 2010 R & R paper is important because it has provided a scholarly veneer for a wave of fiscal austerity policies around the world, including those coming out of Congress.
OPINION
April 5, 2013 | By Dimitri B. Papadimitriou
Just before the congressional spring break, a Senate budget proposal to decrease, but not eliminate, the deficit over 10 years was denounced as "pro debt" by an Alabama senator. It was the kind of proud and loud anti-deficit rhetoric that, no matter how nonsensical, plays nicely into Washington group-think on the subject. The deficit has arguably gained the distinction of being the single most widely misunderstood public policy issue in America. Just 6% (6!) of respondents in a recent poll correctly stated that it had been shrinking, which has in fact been the case for several years, while 10 times more, 62%, wrongly believed that it's been getting bigger.
BUSINESS
March 28, 2013 | By Don Lee
WASHINGTON -- The picture of the American economy has improved -- looking forward and backward. Economic output in last year's fourth quarter was revised slightly higher, putting the nation's growth rate for all of 2012 at a modest 2.2%. The Commerce Department said Thursday that U.S. gross domestic product, or total goods and services produced, expanded at an annual rate of 0.4% in the fourth quarter, after adjusting for inflation. That is down from 3.1% in the third quarter, but better than the 0.1% real GDP growth in the government's previous estimate of fourth-quarter activity.  The weakness in the fourth quarter output was exaggerated by an unusually big drop in federal defense spending and a sharp reduction in inventory accumulation.
BUSINESS
March 2, 2013 | By Vincent Bevins
SAO PAULO, Brazil - The Brazilian government is hoping to get South America's largest economy kicking again. It has yanked down interest rates to record lows and kept the value of the real, the Brazilian currency, in check. The government has even doled out tax cuts in attempts to boost growth. But so far, there's not much evidence those strategies are working - and key economic data released Friday probably won't change things. The government reported the economy grew less than 1% for 2012, which was slightly below what economists expected.
OPINION
January 31, 2013
Federal statisticians issued unexpectedly bad news Wednesday, saying the economy contracted in the last three months of 2012 - the first downturn since the recovery began in mid-2009. The sour numbers weren't as bad as they seemed at first, yet they still sent a clear signal that the economy is too fragile to withstand a sudden shift to fiscal austerity. Unfortunately, Congress doesn't seem to be getting the message. The Commerce Department's Bureau of Economic Analysis reported that U.S. gross domestic product shrank by 0.1% in the fourth quarter of 2012, after growing 3.1% in the third quarter.
BUSINESS
August 1, 2009 | Don Lee
The worst recession since the Great Depression could be coming to an end shortly, with a fresh report raising hopes that a recovery may be stronger than previously projected. The government said Friday that the American economy shrank in the second quarter at an annual pace of 1%. That was better than the 1.5% contraction in gross domestic product that was expected by economists, and it marked a dramatic improvement from a decline of about 6% in the prior six months.
BUSINESS
March 30, 2012 | By Don Lee, Los Angeles Times
WASHINGTON - Fresh evidence indicates that the labor market is continuing to heal and that there's stronger economic growth supporting new hiring than the most obvious numbers might suggest. The Labor Department said Thursday that new claims for unemployment benefits dipped last week to 359,000 - the lowest level since April 2008. Jobless claims have been moving steadily lower in recent weeks amid other signs that the job market is gaining strength. Separately, the Commerce Department said Thursday that its latest tally of the nation's gross domestic product, the total value of goods and services produced, showed a solid 3% annualized increase in the fourth quarter last year.
BUSINESS
January 30, 2013 | By Jim Puzzanghera, Los Angeles Times
WASHINGTON - The economy's unexpected contraction at the end of last year showed that "fiscal cliff" fears and a sharp drop in defense spending pushed the moderate recovery off track, highlighting the precarious nature of the country's economic revival. The nation's total economic output shrank at an annual rate of 0.1% in the last three months of the year, the first such pull-back since the Great Recession ended in mid-2009, the Commerce Department said Wednesday. Economists were surprised but predicted the drop was a temporary detour that would not send the U.S. veering toward another recession.
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