It will be another month before anyone can take a look at the Gross Domestic Product for quarter one of 2012. Current information reveals that the last quarter of 2011 held a 3% clip for GDP, but the early indicators are revealing that there is a slight slippage from that pace. The economy’s ability to expand or grow, without kicking off inflation is thought to be around 2.8% GDP. However, as Chairman Bernanke points out, there needs to be considerably stronger growth for at least a little while, if the unemployment rate is to decline significantly.

According to the Chicago Federal Reserve National Activity Index – (an economic gauge which uses some 85 indicators to determine if the economy is growing faster or slower than its ‘potential’) – came in at a diminutive negative -0.09 for February 2012; down from a relatively brisk +33 in January. With the use of these figures, this puts GDP growth just shy of 2.8% for the month. 

In February, orders for durable goods moved to 2.2% higher. This positive news was a tad below economic expectations, and was not as much of an anticipated recovery from the 3.6% decline in January. However, it is very common to see swings from negative to positive and back again in durable goods ordered, while the current percentage holds its own.

Courtesy of Jessica Regan.

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