Corporations on roll during slump

Aug. 26, 2011 at 1:13 PM
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WASHINGTON, Aug. 26 (UPI) -- Corporate profits remain high while the U.S. economy struggles, the Commerce Department said Friday.

The Bureau of Economic Analysis said corporate profits jumped by $57.3 billion in the second quarter after climbing by $19 billion in the previous quarter.

The Commerce Department also said the economy grew at a sluggish 1 percent in the second quarter compared to the first, an estimate revised lower than the previous report, which put gross domestic product growth at 1.3 percent.

Profits before taxes rose by $8.7 billion in the second quarter compared to an increase of $134.6 billion in the first quarter.

Taxes on corporate income, however, fell by $3 billion in the second quarter after rising $17.6 billion in the first. Dividends rose $13.5 billion after climbing $19 billion in the first.

In Jackson Hole, Wyo., Friday, U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke said financial firms had much more capital on hand to protect them from another downturn. The economic recovery, however, was "much less robust than we had hoped," he said.

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