Great news out of the Bureau of Economic Analysis! In fact, it looks like the proof of a recovery that we've all be waiting for. The data is out for the Fourth Quarter of 2009, and yes, readers of this fine blog will be pleased to learn that after 4 straight quarters of declines, private sector wages and salaries increased in the last three months of 2009. They are now splitting the difference between the 3rd and 4th quarters of 2006.
Wow! Of course, the population increased by about 8 million during those years, but who cares? The recovery is here! Hooray!
And the economists are thrilled, because when you factor in government spending and few other things, presto!
Incomes climbed faster than gross domestic product in the fourth quarter, indicating the U.S. expansion is gaining more momentum than growth estimates suggest.
Gross domestic income, or the money earned by the people, businesses and government agencies whose purchases go into calculating growth, rose at a 6.7 percent annual rate in the fourth quarter, Commerce Department figures showed today. GDP expanded 6.1 percent in the final three months of 2009 before adjusting for inflation.
“We’re in a recovery and maybe the recovery is a little bit stronger than we thought,” said Ethan Harris, head of North America economics at Bank of America-Merrill Lynch Global Research in New York. “My guess is the income will be stronger than the GDP data” in coming quarters.
And we all know that any "guess" out of Bank of America is good as gold.