Market Insider

Best growth in 10 years despite govt headwinds

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Best second-half growth in 10 years

Even with a big drag from the government and a surprise drop in housing construction, the economy still managed the best second-half growth in a decade last year.

"Right now we average 3.7 for the back of half of the year. That's better than anybody thought was possible as late as early December," said Joseph LaVorgna, Deutsche Bank's chief U.S. economist.

The government reported Thursday that the gross domestic product grew by 3.2 percent in the fourth quarter of 2013, in line with expectations. Two big contributors were personal consumption expenditures and exports.

But what it says about the first quarter of this year is not clear, as economists expect cold weather and snow to play havoc with January's economic reports.