Economic growth projections were scaled back and the unemployment rates were ticked up in the latest survey of professional forecasters, released by the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia Friday morning.

Growth, as measured by real GDP, is seen at 2.2% this year, 2.1% next year, 2.7% in 2014 and 3.1% in 2015, off from the 2.3%, 2.7%, 3.1% and 3.4% projections in the prior survey.

By quarter, the projection for third quarter growth was sliced to 1.6% from 2.5%, for the last quarter of the year, the projection was dropped to 2.2% from 2.6% and the first two quarters of 2013 were cut to 1.8% and 2.5% from 2.6% and 2.7%. In the third quarter of 2013, the 48 forecasters expect 2.5% growth.

Unemployment is now forecast at 8.2% for Q3 2012, dropping 1 percentage point for each of the next four quarters, compared to projections for 8.0% unemployment in the third quarter, 7.9% in the next two quarters and 7.7% in the second quarter of 2013.

Non-farm payroll jobs are seen growing at a rate of 125,000 jobs per month this quarter and 135,300 jobs a month next quarter, rising to 151,700 a month in the following quarter before slipping back to 139,700 in the second quarter of next year and then climbing to 149,000 in the third quarter.

Inflation projections were also cut, with forecasters now expecting inflation of 1.8% this year, 2.2% next year, and 2.3% in 2014 as measured by headline CPI. Core inflation projections are up, with core inflation seen at 2.2% this year, 2.0% next year and 2.2% in 2014. Using PCE, headline inflation is seen at 1.7% this year, 2.0% next year, and 2.2% in 2014, according to the survey. Core PCE inflation projections are 1.9%, 2.0% and 2.0% for the three years.

The risk of a negative quarter of GDP rose, reaching a peak of a 21.2% possibility of negative growth in the first quarter of 2013.


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