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Gross Domestic Product
The merry Christmas economy
The merry Christmas economy

President Obama in Hawaii and Americans elsewhere found an unexpected present under their Christmas trees last week in a surprisingly growing economy, lifting some of the gloom otherwise hovering over the national outlook. The gross domestic product (GDP) rose 5 percent in the third quarter, from July through September, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce, for the fastest increase in any comparable period in 11 years. The Democratic National Committee, in what may turn out to be what former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan once memorably called "irrational exuberance," chirped that the news "has already transformed the political...