Foodservice Equipment Reports

Macroeconomic Growth Expected To Remain Modest

While most of the economic data from the last quarter of 2011 was better than many economists anticipated, the outlook for the coming year and the first forecasts for ’13 remain muted. The consensus forecast for real growth of gross domestic product during ’12 in the U.S., as compiled by Blue Chip Economic Indicators, remained at 2.2%, based on the newsletter’s survey of 50 major forecasting groups in early January. The first forecast for’13 calls only for modest improvement to 2.6%.

Forecasts for indicators crucial to foodservice growth--disposable personal income, personal consumption expenditures and unemployment—are for only very slow gains. The forecast for real DPI growth in ’12 improved, but only to 1.4%. The first DPI forecast for ’13 pegs growth at only 2%. The ’12 forecast for real PCE remained at 2.1% growth, down slightly from ’11’s 2.3%. The initial PCE forecast for ’13 is 2.3%. And unemployment is forecast to average 8.7% this year and improve to only 8.3% in ’13.

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