Thursday, February 28, 2013

U.S. Economic Growth Stalls in Fourth Quarter

The anemic economic growth in the U.S. for the fourth quarter of 0.1 percent underscores the fact there is little or no momentum going forward, in spite of the media outlets already trying to spin it as a positive move forward.

Taking into account the gross domestic product data point to no real growth, missing the estimated 0.5 percent growth analysts had been looking for, again, confirms we are a long way from a healthy economy; both in the U.S. and the world.

Every time these types of numbers come out and explode the recovery myth, there are always those that say if it wasn't for this factor or that factor things would be healthier economically. You don't say. They're right. If report after report shows there are specific, but different factors hampering the economy, that means there are multiple reasons for slow or little growth, not alleged unique factors that are only a temporary drag on the economy.

Juggling few numbers actually made the 0.1 percent growth data happen, as the original numbers revealed there was a contraction. The government changed the export and import numbers to get the positive, albeit irrelevant growth. It's been two years since growth was this slow in the U.S.

The spin this time around is the slowdown came from inventory accumulation and a big cut in military spending. Presumably all that is going to go away in the first quarter of 2013.

Even the idea that terminology in the mainstream media say that optimism may be down some because of the slow pace of the recovery. Recovery? GDP of 0.1 percent isn't a recovery. And when you include the fact that the government massaged the numbers in order to ensure there wouldn't be a contraction reported, it is even worse than is being reported.

Original estimates were the economy had contracted by 0.1 percent. Those are probably the more accurate numbers, and should be assumed to be so by investors.

Even the employment numbers are being spun as positive, even though the jobless claims are just about the same as in 2007-2009 recession. How can that be construed as a recovery in any way? It can't. It's a lie, and we need to take that into consideration in our decision-making.

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