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The Economy Is Still Bad

11:01 AM, Apr 27, 2012 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
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Some words and phrases from this Reuters story about the morning's GDP numbers:

stronger demand for automobiles ...

surge in consumer spending ...

somewhat better picture of growth ...

Consumer spending which accounts for about 70 percent of U.S. economic activity, increased at a 2.9 percent rate - the fastest pace since the fourth quarter of 2010.

Americans stepped up spending on automobiles ...

Inventories also helped GDP growth ...

So, do we break out the Veuve and sing "Happy Days Are Here Again"?

Not so much.  The headline for the story reads:

Growth slows on inventories, weak business spending

And the essential datum is:

Gross domestic product expanded at a 2.2 percent annual rate ...

Which, in technical language, means the economy is still bad.

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