Press Releases | Economic Growth

News from EPI Best GDP growth in a year still not good enough

For Immediate Release: Thursday, October 27, 2011
Phoebe Silag or Karen Conner, 202-775-8810

Best GDP growth in a year still not good enough

According to today’s data release from the Bureau of Economic Analysis, gross domestic product—the broadest measure of the nation’s economic activity—grew at an annualized rate of 2.5 percent in the third quarter of 2011, an increase from the previous quarter’s 1.3 percent growth rate and the largest quarterly rate of growth since the third quarter of 2010. As EPI economist Josh Bivens explains in today’s GDP Picture,  this report marks the first time that the level of economic output has surpassed its pre-recession (fourth quarter of 2007) peak. Since quarterly data began being tracked in 1947, the U.S. economy has never taken this long to regain pre-recession output levels. The length of time to achieve the pre-recession level of output is primarily a function at how deep and long-lasting the Great Recession was – between the end of 2007 (when it began) and the middle of 2009 (when it ended), the recession saw output fall by nearly 5.5 percent – the steepest contraction since World War II.

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