Gotcha Again! Surprises From The Expansion That Just Won't Quit

Consumers are fueling new momentum that could last through spring

What slowdown? Three months ago, economists surveyed by BUSINESS WEEK confidently predicted that the economy would cool off from its nearly 3% growth rate in the first three quarters of 1996. For the fourth, they projected a sedate 2.2% pace, with that modest gait continuing through the first half of 1997.

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