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The Winter of Our Content (Slate)

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A newsletter from forecasting firm Macroeconomic Advisers suggested that warm weather from December to February added 72,000 jobs to the U.S. economy. It could explain an unusually high level of jobs relative to modest GDP growth. But the bigger question is if a return to normal weather this spring will undo those gains. The forecasting firm thinks it will, but the economy is in a unique situation that makes forecasting with historical data difficult. Instead of the economy operating at the balance of desired savings matching desired investment — where shifts like weather only have temporary effects — the economy is slowly moving toward recovery as population growth and capital depreciation lead to a gradually increasing desire to invest. But still, hope there are no hurricanes this summer.