Economy rebounds strongly during second quarter of 2017

The U.S. economy rebounded strongly during the April-June quarter as businesses invested more and consumers spent on furniture, washing machines and other goods. The gross domestic product (GDP) increased 2.6 percent, according to The Washington Post.

GDP grew at an annual rate of 1.2 percent during the first quarter of 2017 and 1.8 percent during the fourth quarter of 2016.

Measures of inflation have remained weak, however, casting more doubt on the Federal Reserve's plan to continue steadily raising interest rates.

A decrease in spending by state and local governments, as well as lower investment in housing and company inventories, limited growth in the second quarter, but those effects were offset by an increase in other types of investment, greater consumer spending and stronger exports. Growth was aided by investment from sectors such as information technology and oil and gas, which is finally reinvesting in new infrastructure.

Although the 2.6 percent growth during the second quarter signals a rebound from the first quarter, it still falls short of the 3 to 4 percent growth the Trump administration is targeting. Many of Trump's economic plans, including tax cuts and the administration's budget, rely on having greater economic growth to generate more revenue for the government. But though the current economic expansion is already the third-longest on record, growth rates have remained low.

The Commerce Department also has released data showing full-year annual growth fell from a peak of 2.9 percent in 2015 to 1.5 percent in 2016, the slowest pace since the recession.

Date : 8/1/2017