Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Bonus content

February 2, 2014

Solid growth brightens economic outlook for 2014

WASHINGTON (AP) — Consumers will spend more. Government will cut less. Businesses will invest more. And more companies will hire.

Add it all up, and you can see why expectations are rising that 2014 will be the best year for the U.S. economy since the recession ended 4½ years ago. That’s why the Federal Reserve is pressing ahead with a plan to scale back its economic stimulus.

The optimists got a boost Thursday from a government report that showed consumers fueled solid economic growth in the final quarter of 2013. The report lifted hopes that the economy will be able to withstand turmoil in emerging economies, a pullback in the Fed’s stimulus and mounting risks to the U.S. stock market over the next 12 months.

Americans struggling with long-term unemployment and stagnant pay might not get relief anytime soon. And areas such as manufacturing, construction and home sales remain far from full health. Still, the outlook for the economy as a whole brightened after the government said growth reached a 3.2 percent annual rate last quarter on the strength of the strongest consumer spending in three years.

“The economy showed real signs of momentum at the end of 2013,” said Diane Swonk, chief economist at Mesirow Financial. “We are better positioned for decent growth for 2014 than we were a year ago.”

Consumer spending surged in the October-December quarter at an annual rate of 3.3 percent — the best pace since 2010 and a big jump from the 2 percent growth rate of the previous quarter. Consumer spending is particularly important because it accounts for about 70 percent of the economy.

For 2013 as a whole, the economy grew a tepid 1.9 percent, weaker than the 2.8 percent increase in 2012, the Commerce Department said Thursday. Growth was held back by higher taxes and federal spending cuts that kicked in early in 2013.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Bonus content
  • Film Review Guardians of the Galaxy-6 [Duplicate] Review: 'Guardians' is irreverent but not enough At the height of their powers, our overlords at Marvel have deigned to prove, like an emperor tolerating a court jester, that they do, in fact, have a sense of humor. The Marvel universe, of course, isn't entirely lacking comedy, as we've seen in "Ir

    July 28, 2014 3 Photos

  • TV-Sharknado 2-6 [Duplicate] 'Sharknado' sequel has bite and lots of laughs NEW YORK (AP) — Don't worry about me. The Sharknado Evacuation map supplied by Syfy network places me, as a resident of Lower Manhattan, smack in the zone most in peril this sharknado season. But I'll be ready. You might as well batten down the hatch

    July 28, 2014 3 Photos

  • Virus drugmaker fights pediatricians' new advice CHICAGO (AP) — A costly drug given mostly to premature babies is at the center of a clash between the manufacturer and the nation's leading pediatrician's group, which recommends scaling back use of the medicine. The dispute involves new guidelines f

    July 28, 2014

  • Family Slain Maine [Duplicate] Police investigate deaths of family of 5 in Maine SACO, Maine (AP) — The state medical examiner plans to conduct autopsies on the bodies of five family members found shot to death in an apartment in southern Maine. Three children ages 4, 7 and 12 were among the victims discovered Sunday afternoon wh

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Obama Exporting Pollution [Duplicate] Not in my backyard: US sending dirty coal abroad NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (AP) — Coal from Appalachia rumbles into this port city, 150 railroad cars at a time, bound for the belly of the massive cargo ship Prime Lily. The ship soon sets sail for South America, its 80,000 tons of coal destined for power pl

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • FedEx Indicted [Duplicate] FedEx charges raise online pharmacy issues SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — FedEx Corp., the latest company accused in a federal probe involving illegal online pharmacies, says it will fight the charges that it knowingly shipped drugs to people who lack valid prescriptions. The company says it would hav

    July 28, 2014 2 Photos

  • Salmonella Outbreak Trial [Duplicate] Trial in salmonella outbreak to start in Georgia ATLANTA (AP) — Three people accused of scheming to manufacture and ship salmonella-tainted peanuts that killed nine people, sickened more than 700 and prompted one of the largest food recalls in history are set to go to trial this week in south Georg

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • Mideast Israel Palestinians-12 [Duplicate] Gaza war rages despite Hamas, Israel truce pledges GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) — Israel and Hamas launched new attacks Sunday in the raging Gaza war, despite each side offering different truces to temporarily halt nearly three weeks of fighting ahead of a major Muslim holiday. After initially rejecti

    July 27, 2014 10 Photos

  • Health Overhaul-3 [Duplicate] Plan to simplify 2015 health renewals may backfire WASHINGTON (AP) — If you have health insurance at your job, you probably don't give much thought to each year's renewal. But make the same assumption in one of the new health law plans, and it could lead to costly surprises. Insurance exchange custo

    July 27, 2014 2 Photos

  • Teen Pilot Crash_Kova.jpg Memorial service set to honor Indiana crash victims

    A memorial service at sea will be held for a 17-year-old pilot from Indiana and his father, whose plane crashed during an around-the-world flight attempt.

    July 26, 2014 1 Photo

Latest news
Featured Ads
Only on our website
AP Video
Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue Raw: Corruption Trial Begins for Former Va Gov. The Carbon Trap: US Exports Global Warming UN Security Council Calls for Gaza Cease-fire Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating 13 Struck by Lightning on Calif. Beach Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted Israel, Hamas Trade Fire Despite Truce in Gaza Italy's Nibali Set to Win First Tour De France Raw: Shipwrecked Concordia Completes Last Voyage Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge From Nest Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix 12-hour Cease-fire in Gaza Fighting Begins Raw: Bolivian Dancers Attempt to Break Record Raw: Israel, Palestine Supporters Rally in US Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma More M17 Bodies Return, Sanctions on Russia Grow
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Obituaries
Poll
Kelly Lafferty's video on Tom Miller