By: Forrest Jones
Most economists believe the Great Recession ended in the summer of 2009 although a quick look at the numbers reveals President Barack Obama's stimulus measures, widely credited for getting the economy going again, really didn’t work.
In the third quarter of 2009, final gross domestic product growth came to 2.2 percent, according to government data, although when stimulus spending was subtracted from that figure and numbers show the economy contracted, the Big Picture reports.
The economy grew 5.6 percent during the fourth quarter of 2009 according to official figures although that figure drops to 2 percent when taken net of stimulus money, the Big Picture adds.
In fact, the numbers show the economy contracted again during the first quarter of 2010.
“Real growth means that economies are being more productive and real useful jobs are being created,” the Big Picture reports.
“Government stimulus is an attempt to manipulate growth statistics via inefficient and wasteful government spending. Stimulus does not advance standards of living.”
The Commerce Department says the U.S. economy officially grew 3 percent during the first quarter of 2010 when compared to the fourth quarter of last year, down from its original estimate of 3.2 percent, according to the AFP newswire.
Economists were expecting even better numbers.
“This is a fairly tepid recovery that is fighting a lot of headwinds,” Joel Naroff, of Naroff Economic Advisors, tells the AFP.
“It will be hard to grow rapidly when the economy has to overcome limited credit availability, a modest recovery in housing, high unemployment rates and, as a consequence, depressed consumer confidence ... and uncertainty in Europe.”