US real GDP growth in the fourth quarter of 2017 was reported as 2.9%, higher than the previous 2.5% estimate but down from 3.2% in the prior period of Q3. For 2017, real GDP grew at 2.3% over the prior year, but up on 2016 estimated real growth of 1.5%. The US economy continues to grow at a sub-3% rate annually; in the eight-year period since the 2008-09 recession, the US economy has expanded at a modest average of only 2.2%.
Recent economic projections of GDP growth from the Federal Reserve estimates a 3% increase in 2018 but then easing back to between 2% and 3% in 2019 and 2020. The promise of 4%-plus growth made earlier by the White House may prove elusive. However, the longer-term effects of tax cuts, the recent passage of increased budget spending, and an infrastructure bill, not expected now before early-2019, may yet boost economic growth closer to the 4% level. The global economy is forecast to grow 3.9% in 2018 according to both OECD and IMF estimates.
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