NORMAN — Economists seem to be shrugging off the latest numbers about business in the first quarter of the year. They’re blaming the weather and a drop in health care spending for the 2.9 percent drop.
The numbers apparently don’t mean much if the current quarter is looking good. Analysts believe growth may reach a robust 3.5 percent for the current period and average 3 percent for the second half of the year.
The economy is getting a lift from an improving job market. More than 200,000 jobs have been added each month for the past four months. Higher stock prices and home values are giving consumers more buying confidence.
Health care spending may also increase. Consumers who bought insurance may now start filing claims, increasing U.S. spending on health care.
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