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Joint Economic Committee Democrats Chairman - Rep. Don Beyer (D-VA)

Chairman Beyer Statement on Q3 GDP

Today, Congressman Don Beyer (D-VA), Chairman of the U.S. Congress Joint Economic Committee (JEC), released the following statement after the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) reported its initial estimate of third quarter gross domestic product (GDP) growth of 2.0% on an annualized basis.

Visit the JEC’s Macroeconomic Dashboard to view the latest economic data.

“Today’s announcement of continued growth—the fifth consecutive quarter that the U.S. economy expanded—indicates two things.  

“First, until we can put the pandemic fully behind us, we cannot expect business as usual. 

“Due in large part to increased efforts to raise vaccination rates, we saw back-to-back quarters of above 6% growth, which brought the economy above its pre-pandemic peak. The United States remains a leader among its peer countries as the only nation whose economy has now surpassed its pre-pandemic high. Since President Biden took office, we’ve seen nearly 5 million jobs created, and today, we learned initial weekly unemployment claims dropped to a new pandemic-era low. The labor market is tightening—the unemployment rate recently dropped to 4.8%, a new pandemic low—and demand for workers is strong, which drives higher productivity and wage growth economy-wide. 

“But as Delta peaked this summer, which also exacerbated supply chain problems, economic activity slowed. Among the unvaccinated, this spurred a new wave of the pandemic and sparked health concerns in communities across the country. Though supply chain issues remain, today's release showed signs these bottlenecks may be starting to ease, as businesses inventories were able to better meet demand and inflation continued to slow.

"Second, to advance sustained, robust economic growth, we must promote a policy environment that encourages the creation of well-paying, high-quality, safe jobs that enable Americans to support themselves and their families. Labor force participation is a key input to economic growth, and as much as the strong demand for workers can help bring marginalized people back into the workforce, the pandemic has exposed the structural barriers that continue to hold workers—particularly women—back from being able to fully participate in the economy.  

“Democrats in Congress are in it for the long haul. With today’s announcement of the Build Back Better framework, Democrats are on the cusp of making historic investments that will build economic resilience for the long term and advance economic growth that is stronger, stable and broadly shared. These investments in physical and care infrastructure will lower household costs, decrease inflationary pressures and combat climate change.   

“This is how we will emerge from this national tragedy stronger than before.”