New U.S. Commerce Department reports show the nation’s economy grew by the fastest rate in almost four years during the most recent quarter.
According to Fox News, the 4.1 percent growth rate is the highest since the third quarter of 2014. President Donald Trump touted the numbers in a Friday morning tweet.
“GREAT GDP numbers just released,” he wrote. “Will be having a news conference soon!”
Trump went on to address the news in greater detail later that morning, citing his administration’s policies as the catalyst for the continued economic growth.
“We’ve accomplished an economic turnaround of historic proportions,” he said. “Once again, we are the economic envy of the entire world.”
As polls show many Republicans face an uphill battle ahead of the upcoming midterm elections, the party has focused on a strong economy as a consistent narrative.
Some economists caution the most recent spike was likely influenced by a rise in exports, particularly soybeans, to fill international orders before potential tariffs made the products more expensive.
White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow challenged such assertions, claiming the quarterly numbers do not reflect a “one-shot” bump due to the Trump trade policies. He called the current growth rate “sustainable” despite fears of a looming trade war.
Analysts also point to a spike in consumer spending, a major factor in determining gross domestic product growth, as a reason for the expansion reflected in Friday’s numbers.
After a meager rise in consumer spending of just 0.5 percent during the year’s first quarter, the Commerce Department showed growth of 4 percent during the most recent period.
Supporters of Trump’s policies cite the combination of historically low unemployment rates and Republican-backed tax reform for creating the environment for that consumer confidence.
Economic growth in the U.S. was also fueled by higher oil prices and stronger markets worldwide.
“Moments ago, the numbers for Americas economic growth, or GDP, were just released and I am thrilled to announce in the second quarter of the year the United States economy grew at the amazing rate of 4.1 percent,” Trump said in a news conference Friday.
He added that the nation is “on track to hit the highest annual average growth rate in over 13 years.”
Addressing concern about his trade policies, the president urged citizens to wait for the results of ongoing negotiations.
“I will say this right now and I will say it strongly: As the trade deals come in one by one, we’re going to go a lot higher than these numbers,” Trump said. “And these are great numbers.”
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