Obama Says U.S. Economy Poised for ‘Breakthrough Year’

President Barack Obama said today that the U.S. economy is heading into 2014 strong and “our businesses are positioned for new growth and new jobs.”

“We head into next year with an economy that’s stronger than it was when we started the year,” the president said at a White House news conference shortly before leaving the capital for a vacation in Hawaii. Obama said he was looking forward to “a breakthrough year for America.”

The president’s remarks came amid signs of growing economic strength. Gross domestic product rose during the third quarter at a revised 4.1 percent annual mark, its fastest pace in almost two years, the Commerce Department said today.

The president said he anticipated the Affordable Care Act will help contain health-care costs and help the economy grow in the new year. The economy is expected to slow in the fourth quarter to a 1.5 percent annual rate, according to economists surveyed by Bloomberg.

He called on Congress to extend unemployment benefits that are set to expire in January.

To contact the reporter on this story: David J. Lynch in Washington at dlynch27@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Steven Komarow at skomarow1@bloomberg.net

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