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Mon Jun 6, 2016, 06:00 PM


U.S. Economy Projected to Expand This Year by Least Since 2012

Economic growth will slacken in 2016 to its slowest pace in four years as uncertainty about the presidential election weighs on the outlook, according to a survey of forecasters by the National Association for Business Economics.

They see gross domestic product expanding 1.9 percent this year on a fourth quarter-to- fourth quarter basis. Thatís down from a projected 2.5 percent gain in the last quarterly survey released in March and compares with growth last year of 2 percent.

Almost 60 percent of forecasters say uncertainty surrounding the November presidential election will hurt the economy, the association said.

ďIf Iím an owner of a medium-sized business and Iím hearing very rattling news about the election, on the margin Iíll be a little more cautious about hiring or making an investment,Ē said Lisa Emsbo-Mattingly, president of NABE.

Emsbo-Mattingly, who is also director of research for asset allocation for Fidelity Investments in Boston, said the biggest factor behind the markdown in the 2016 outlook is weak business investment. Spending on equipment, structures and intellectual property is projected to stall in 2016, after expanding 2.8 percent last year.



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