Treasury Secretary John Snow said Sunday he foresees steady economic growth during the final three months of this year and throughout 2004. “I’m not in the business of making forecasts, but the private-sector forecasts that I’ve seen are around 4 percent for the fourth quarter and around 4 percent for next year,” he said. “Those look like reasonable forecasts to me.”
The broadest measure of the economy’s performance, gross domestic product, grew at a remarkable 7.2 percent annual rate from July through September, more than double the 3.3 percent rate in the previous quarter.
“That 7 percent growth rate we saw in the third quarter is unusually high, and we’ll probably see a lower but still good growth rate in the fourth quarter and, I expect, for all of ’04,” Snow said on CNN’s “Late Edition.”
The Labor Department reported Friday that the economy created nearly 300,000 jobs in the past three months after a half-year drought, pushing the unemployment rate down to 6 percent in October.
“I think the economy is clearly on the right path. We’re beginning to see signs of a good recovery. And with a good recovery, we’ll see a nice pickup in jobs,” Snow told “Fox News Sunday.”
“Those job numbers for September and for October were encouraging, but ... we aren’t where we need to be,” Snow said. “We need to keep working. We can’t rest.
And our objective is to make sure that every American who is looking for work can find a job.”
The country has lost 2.6 million job since Bush took office — 1 percent in the private sector alone.