The Conference Board Economics Watch® United States View
The U.S. economy is ending 2013 with slow growth, in line with the overall sluggish performance for the year as a whole. The Conference Board Holiday Spending Survey does not provide strong hope that the holiday season will greatly lift the fourth-quarter GDP growth rate, which we believe is an anemic 1.2 percent annualized. However, stronger employment data and manufacturing surveys point to moderately firmer growth in 2014. Moreover, the large fiscal drag experienced in 2013 should lessen substantially in 2014. For the global economy, we estimate that economic activity will pick up in 2014, but only modestly from a tepid 2.8 percent in 2013 to 3.1 percent in 2014.