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Morgan Stanley credits Bidenomics for ‘much stronger’ than expected GDP growth

by Christina Wilkie/CNBC

WASHINGTON — Morgan Stanley is crediting President Joe Biden’s economic policies with driving an unexpected surge in the U.S. economy that is so significant that the bank was forced to make a “sizable upward revision” to its estimates for U.S. gross domestic product.

Biden’s Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act is “driving a boom in large-scale infrastructure,” wrote Ellen Zentner, chief U.S. economist for Morgan Stanley, in a research note released Thursday. In addition to infrastructure, “manufacturing construction has shown broad strength,” she wrote.

As a result of these unexpected swells, Morgan Stanley now projects 1.9% GDP growth for the first half of this year. That’s nearly four times higher than the bank’s previous forecast of 0.5%.

“The economy in the first half of the year is growing much stronger than we had anticipated, putting a more comfortable cushion under our long-held soft landing view,” Zentner wrote.

The analysts also doubled their original estimate for GDP growth in the fourth quarter, to 1.3% from 0.6%. Looking into next year, they raised their forecast for real GDP in 2024 by a tenth of a percent, to 1.4%. “The narrative behind the numbers tells the story of industrial strength in the U.S,” Zentner wrote.

Morgan Stanley’s revision came at a pivotal time for the Biden White House. The president has spent the summer crisscrossing the country, touting his economic achievements. “Together we are transforming the country, not just through jobs, not just through manufacturing, but also by rebuilding our infrastructure,” Biden said Thursday during a visit to a Philadelphia shipyard.

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