After a dismal winter, the US economy sprang back to life in the April-June quarter, growing at a fast 4% annual rate on the strength of higher consumer and business spending. That beat economists' expectations, the New York Times notes. The Commerce Department says the second-quarter rebound followed a sharp 2.1% annualized drop in economic activity in the January-March quarter. Another big number, as per the AP: Revised figures from the second half of 2013 show the American economy growing at the fastest rate in a decade.
That 2.1% figure was revised from a previous estimate of a 2.9% decline. But it was still the biggest contraction since early 2009 during the depths of the Great Recession. Last quarter's rebound was broad-based, with consumers, businesses, the housing industry and state and local governments all combining to boost growth. Economists expect that momentum to continue in the second half of this year, when they forecast growth of around 3%. For the math-challenged among us, the Times explains the number in five graphics.