NC State Ag Economist Dr. Mike Walden – “Economic Update”


Mary:  I’m Mary Walden, with economist MW, welcoming you to the economic perspective.  Today’s program looks at an economic update.  Mike, we are now through the first quarter of 2017, which means 25% of the year is now gone.   Coming into the year there were many expectations for the economy, particularly in terms of increasing economic growth.  Where do we stand after the first three months of the year?

Mike: Summary Answer

  1. Point of clarification – I know we are past 4 months of the year, but many of our economic statistics are released with a lag
  2. No sign yet of an economic acceleration
  3. GDP up 0.7% on annual basis in first quarter
  4. Interest rates and inflation rate have pulled back – their rise had been considered bullish
  5. Best news – jobs continue to be added and unemployment rate is falling
  6. Bottom line – continuation of where we were
  7. Big question – can economic policy (tax cuts, infrastructure) boost the economy if passed
  8. Or is this what will be due to demographics (aging) and productivity
  9. I’m MW


Mary:  And I’m Mary Walden for the North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service