Greensboro College Economist: Third-Quarter Growth About as Expected

"Today's preliminary government estimate of 1.5 percent annual economic growth in the third quarter of 2015 is in line with previous predictions of long-term government growth, a Greensboro College economist says.

William K. MacReynolds, founding dean of the School of Business and director of the N.C. Center for Economic Prosperity at Greensboro College, said today's report was no surprise.

The report "is consistent with the longer-term growth potential for the economy of 2.0 percent," MacReynolds said.  "In fact, compared to the third quarter one year ago, GDP has grown by exactly 2.0 percent."

MacReynolds noted that the report also found a "healthy" 3.5 percent real increase in disposable household income, which has led to increases in both personal savings and consumption.

"The added savings is a sign that future consumption can be maintained as households are paying down debt and becoming more prepared to fend off any future loss of income and jobs," he said.

Inflation remained low at 1.2 percent, he said. The one cloud on the horizon is that current-dollar GDP grew by just 2.7 percent.

Because federal income taxes are collected from current-dollar GDP, MacReynolds said, "previous estimates of federal tax revenue are likely overstated," meaning that future deficits could be higher than predicted.

The N.C. Center for Economic Prosperity was founded at Greensboro College in 2015 to gather, analyze and comment on economic data and policies that impact North Carolinians.

MacReynolds has served as a senior economist for the Federal Trade Commission and director of economic forecasting for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

He holds a B.S. in agricultural economics from the University of California at Berkeley and a Ph.D. in economics from the University of Southern California. He joined the college faculty full-time in 2014 after having taught part-time here since 2010.

Greensboro College provides a liberal-arts education grounded in the traditions of the United Methodist Church and fosters the intellectual, social, and, spiritual development of all students while supporting their individual needs.

Founded in 1838 and located near downtown Greensboro, the college enrolls about 1,000 students from 29 states and territories, the District of Columbia and seven foreign countries in its undergraduate liberal-arts program and four master's degree programs. In addition to rigorous academics and a well-supported Honors program, the school features a 17-sport NCAA Division III athletic program and dozens of service and recreational opportunities."

- A Press Release

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