Bloomberg BNA (01/22/13)
Bloomberg BNA‘s annual Economic Outlook, a forecast of economists at 21 top financial, consulting, and academic organizations, predicts that the U.S. unemployment rate will slip to 7.5% from 7.8% in the second half of this year. Although the payroll tax increase and federal spending cuts will put a damper on growth early in the year, business investment, job creation, the housing recovery, and consumer spending will help the economy pick up steam in the latter half of 2013. The report predicts modest job growth during the first half, but 176,000 jobs per month will be added during the last six months of the year. It also forecasts a 2.6% increase in total hourly compensation for private-sector employees, compared to a 2% gain through the third quarter of 2012.