The last GDP numbers before the election are out: The economy grew at an annual rate of 2.0 percent in the third quartet. That's better than what economists were predicting, a large improvement over last quarter, and possibly another sign our economy is in a recovery. The full release can be found here, but the key thing to take away is this:
... the output of goods and services produced by labor and property located in the United States -- increased at an annual rate of 2.0 percent in the third quarter of 2012 (that is, from the second quarter to the third quarter), according to the "advance" estimate released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis. In the second quarter, real GDP increased 1.3 percent.
That's good news for those of us who are fans of a healthy economy. (And a certain incumbent president.) And that beat the expectations set by economists polled by Bloomberg and Reuters—they had predicted a 1.8 rise and 1.9 rise respectively. For economic neophytes, the magic number we're shooting for is around a 3 percent growth, and while 2 percent isn't there yet, it's still better than the dismal 1.3 from last quarter.
Since the economy has been an talking point on the campaign trail, the numbers could be folded into Obama's new-found strategy of taking credit for a recovery. It's also pretty likely that you won't hear about the GDP in any Romney speeches over the next week and a half. And in case you were wondering, unemployment-truther Jack Welch and his Twitter account (so far) have remained silent on the numbers.