US economy grew at a brisk 4.1 percent rate last quarter

Trump Breaks Tradition on GDP Figures

President Trump is holding a special press conference outside the White House. From left, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, Trump, Vice President Mike Pence, and Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin. He added, "And my great economists don't want me to say this but I think we can do better than that".

President Donald Trump, who ahead of Friday's release of the gross domestic product report had promoted the notion that second-quarter growth would be robust, declared victory. Few economists outside the administration agree with this claim. In his IL speech, Trump credited his tariffs with boosting the economy and helping the Granite City steel plant reopen, Fox reports.

Also nudging GDP growth upward were stimulus effects from the tax cuts that went into effect at the beginning of the year and a big increase in government spending.

The United States economy grew at its fastest pace since 2014 in the second quarter of the year, up 4.1%, helped by strong business investment, consumer spending and federal government spending, as well as a boost in exports that came in anticipation of retaliatory tariffs. But quarterly figures are volatile and strength in one quarter can be reversed in the next. "That said, there is every reason to expect that growth in the second half of the year will still be in the 3 percent range".

Both of those factors are largely beyond Trump's control.

"One of the more underreported stories is we now have a trade deficit that dropped by more than $50 billion", said Hannity.

Many analysts believe the second-quarter growth numbers are artificially inflated by shifts in consumption to avoid the new tariffs announced this quarter. There was also a front-loading of exports of other goods in the second quarter.

House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady, Texas Republican, said "our economy is booming", and he credited "a competitive tax code, bold reforms to regulations, and encouraging news this week on trade".

"The spring quarter could be the high water mark for growth", said Joel Naroff, chief economist at Naroff Economic Advisors in Holland, Pennsylvania.

But economists caution that the growth rate is hard to maintain. Average hourly pay, before adjusting for inflation, is rising at about a 2.5 percent annual rate, below the 4 percent level reached in the late 1990s when the unemployment rate was as low as it is now.

This marks the fastest pace of growth for the USA economy in any quarter since the third quarter of 2014.

Growth in consumer spending, which accounts for more than two-thirds of USA economic activity, increased at a 4.0 percent rate in the second quarter. "You've got a big hole on the other side of that". They also said they'd team up to combat trade abuses by an unnamed country that can only be China.

THE FACTS: No, it's not totally closed.

A measure of domestic demand surged at a 4.3pc rate in the second quarter.

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