Commerce Department: US economy grew at 2.8% annual rate last quarter.
John Crudele: The economy grew at a mere 0.6% rate last quarter, for a grand total of 0.15% growth during the super-swell holiday season.
Or as I call it: Merry effing Christmas.
Crudele’s figures look a lot more honest than Washington’s. Here’s how he figures it:
In Friday’s number the government used 0.4 percent as the rate of inflation. Zero. Point. Four. Percent.
In which country is inflation that low? Certainly not in America. Absolutely not in the last four months of 2011.
The consumer price index, which is put out by the US Census Bureau, had prices up 3 percent for the year.
And the rate of inflation used in calculating the third-quarter 2011 GDP was 2.6 percent; in the first and second quarters, combined, the rate was 2.5 percent; it was 1.9 percent in the fourth quarter of 2010.
So how does the Zero-Point-Four-Freakin’ percent sound now?
That’s how Commerce got to the not-very-inspiring 2.8 percent growth it reported last Friday.
Let me put this another way in case you are missing my outrage.
If the inflation figure used in last Friday’s GDP figure had just remained the same as the 2.6 percent rate from the third quarter, Washington would have had to report fourth-quarter annualized growth of just 0.6 percent.