In the third quarter, GDP increased 2.8 percent from last year. Federal government cutbacks reduced growth by 0.13 percent, which means that without the sequester and other fiscal headwinds the economy probably would have grown more than 3 percent last quarter.
Once again, the best word for this is meh. Business and consumer spending slowed, and much of the Q3 growth was driven by increased inventory stockpiling, which isn’t sustainable. Overall, this report was an improvement from earlier in the year, but basically about average for the past three years. It could be worse, but we’re still nowhere near a truly robust recovery.