The world's largest
economy shrank between July and September more than first thought.
government report Tuesday says a measure of all the goods and services produced
in the United States shrank by half a percent in the third quarter. That is
two-tenths of a percent worse than first estimated.
Economists blame the
shrinkage in the GDP on the sharpest fall in consumer spending in
Officials and investors watch consumer spending carefully
because consumer demand drives about two-thirds of all U.S. economic
To boost faltering spending, Washington has just announced a
new loan program to help companies that issue credit cards, make student loans,
and finance automobile purchases. The effort is also aimed at making more loan
money available to home buyers.
Also Tuesday President-elect Barack Obama
is expected to announce more appointments to his team of economic
On Monday, Mr. Obama nominated New York Federal Reserve
President Timothy Geithner as the new Treasury Secretary. He also named Former
Treasury Secretary Lawrence Summers to head the policy-making National Economic
Meanwhile, a leading international economics organization warns
many of the world's major economies could soon suffer the worst recession since
The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development is
forecasting declines in the United States, Europe and Japan.
organization's chief economist, Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel, also says the number of
unemployed across OECD member economies may rise by eight million.
Tuesday the World Bank said it expects China's economic growth will slow next
year to its lowest rate in nearly two decades.
The bank today cut its
2009 growth forecast for China to 7.5 percent because of the global financial
crisis, nearly two points lower than the expected rate for this year (9.4
World Bank economist Louis Kuijs says China's downturn will
worsen in the first half of next year because of weakening export
He says that while China cannot avoid the global financial
crisis, it can take steps to minimize its impact on the country.
has already announced plans for a multibillion dollar stimulus plan to boost its
economy. The plan calls for spending on construction, tax cuts and aid to the
poor and farmers.
On Monday, Britain announced its own economic stimulus
package to combat the effects of the financial crisis there, while the United
States said it could take more measures to repair its shattered financial
Britain's finance minister, Chancellor of the Exchequer Alistair
Darling, announced a $30-billion package to get people spending again.
also said Britain's economy could shrink by as much as 1.25 percent next year.
The U.S. Treasury and U.S. central bank are expected to announce Tuesday
a new lending program to make more financing available to American
Asian markets soared Tuesday in reaction to the latest actions
by treasury officials in the United States and Britain.