- The Washington Times - Friday, October 28, 2016

In a development that could buoy Hillary Clinton’s candidacy, the federal government reported Friday that the economy picked up steam in the third quarter to expand at a rate of 2.9 percent, double the rate of earlier this year.

Jason Furman, chairman of President Obama’s Council of Economic Advisers, said the increase in gross domestic product was due to “strong export growth and continued strength in consumer spending.”

“Exports, which have faced significant headwinds in recent years from slow growth abroad, grew at an annual rate of 10.0 percent in the third quarter, their fastest quarterly pace since 2013,” Mr. Furman said.

He said more work needs to be done, and Mr. Obama will continue to push for increased federal spending on infrastructure projects and for lawmakers to pass the free-trade Trans-Pacific Partnership.

The growth, while modest, could help Mrs. Clinton’s bid in the final days of the campaign. The party in control of the White House usually is tied to the economy’s ups and downs in the presidential election.

The campaign of Republican nominee Donald Trump said “America can do better” after “dismal” growth of 1.5 percent in the past year.

“Growth hasn’t risen above 3 percent for a full year in any year of the Obama presidency,” said Dan Kowalski, the campaign’s deputy policy director. “Decades of strong economic growth and global leadership have been replaced with low-paying jobs, global chaos and a national debt that has doubled under Obama-Clinton.”

He added, “The single most important issue facing the American people is an economy that has failed to deliver jobs, incomes, and opportunity. The Trump economic plan creates at least 25 million jobs and 4 percent growth through tax, trade, energy and regulatory reforms.”

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