The Conference Board Economics Watch® United States View

  • Authors:
    Kathy Bostjancic
  • Publication Date:
    February 2012
  • Report Number:
    EWUV_V2N2

Increasing positive trends in the U.S. economy, but can they be sustained?

  • Economic conditions in United States continue to firm up, while global economic activity softens
  • Global manufacturing is a bright spot as the cycle bottoms out
  • The improvement of the labor market is key, but presents risks of a trade-off
    between more jobs and weaker productivity gains
  • Acceleration in inflation is unlikely—commodity prices are lower, inflation expectations
    stable, and there is large excess slack in the economy
  • Higher gasoline and oil prices are more of a tax on the consumer and lead to slower
    economic growth, rather than higher inflation
  • Accommodating monetary policy will most likely remain, as long as output gap remains large

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