Cross Timbers Business Report, Volume 16, Number 1, Fall 2002 Page: 1
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Cross Timbers Business Report
Published by Students in Free Enterprise of Tarleton State University
Edited by Barbara Offor
Third Quarter Growth Rebound of 3.9% Expected to be Short Lived
By Krystal Hawkins
The economy experienced a rise of 3.9 percent in real
gross domestic product (GDP), an inflation-adjusted meas-
ure of all goods and services, during this year's third quar-
ter, which ended in September.
Though the economy grew at a weak 1.2 percent an-
nual rate during the second quarter, it rebounded with an
expansion of 3.9 percent in the last quarter, according the
Commerce Department. The third quarter's increase was
not as impressive as that of the first quarter (almost 5 per-
cent), but is still a welcome improvement over the second.
Weak spending indicators in the early part of the fourth
quarter have prompted many economists to predict another
slowdown by yearend.
Business spending, remained weak in the third quarter.
Its 0.7 percent drop continued a two-year downward trend.
The threat of a Middle Eastern war, a succession of corpo-
rate scandals, and sweeping drops in stock prices have all
suppressed business investment.
Consumer spending was strong with a 4.1 percent rise
in the third quarter following a weak 1.8 percent increase
the previous period. Automobile sales played a huge part in
spending, accounting for almost half of the total increase in
output last quarter. Many economists believe this increase
will be short lived and some have already noticed a turn-
around. It is predicted that this slowdown in consumer
spending may reduce output growth to one percent or less
in the fourth quarter.
Government spending boasted a 3.1 percent increase
for the third quarter, up significantly from the second pe-
riod. This increase also helped to boost GDP.
Changes in Real GDP
Annual Percentage Rates
03 Q4 Q1 2 Q3 Q4 Q1 Q2 Q3
2000 2001 I 2002
Source: Bureau of Economic Analysis, U. S. Department of Commerce
Even though both exports and imports grew, econo-
mists considered the expansion to be relatively weak. Im-
ports, which rose by 2.5 percent, were expected to drop
after the second quarter's 22.2 percent jump and export
growth of 2.1 percent paled in comparison with the second
quarter's gain of 14.3 percent.
Krystal Hawkins is a senior majoring in administrative
systems at Tarleton State University
National, State Unemployment Rates Above Year-Earlier Values
By: Tanci Harris
Data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and the
Texas Workforce Commission indicate that for the year
2002 the unemployment rates for both the nation and the
state increased gradually. Both areas reached lows near the
end of 2000.
On the national level, the jobless rate moved from 5.6
percent in January to 6 percent in April then eased back to
5.7 percent in October. The 5.7 percent average unem-
ployment figure for the first ten months of 2002 is signifi-
cantly higher than the 4.8 percent value posted for the same
period last year.
Texas also showed a rise in its jobless rate in 2002.
The state's unemployment rate rose from 5.7 percent in
January to 6.2 percent in October giving Texas an unem-
ployment average of 6.0 percent. This figure indicates a
huge increase for Texans compared to 2001. The unem-
ployment average for the same ten months of last year was
Erath County started 2002 with a jobless rate of 2.8
percent. This statistic reached a yearly high of 3.1 percent
in July then declined to 2.2 percent in October. Erath's
average unemployment rate of 2.7 percent for the first ten
months of this year is notably higher than the 2.2 percent
average reported for the same period last year.
Statistics show that Bosque County had a dramatic
decrease in joblessness from January to October 2002.
Volume 16, No. 1
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Tarleton State University. Students in Free Enterprise. Cross Timbers Business Report, Volume 16, Number 1, Fall 2002, periodical, Autumn 2002; Stephenville, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth298229/m1/1/: accessed September 25, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Tarleton State University.