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Bush Takes Credit for Promising News on US Economy

President Bush is taking credit for good economic news with growth in the U.S. economy up more than eight percent.

President Bush says his series of record tax cuts are helping to revive an economy that he says is getting stronger after a recession that was made worse by the 2001 terrorist attacks and corporate accounting scandals.

"Productivity is high," the president said. "Business investment is rising. Housing construction is strong. The job base is expanding. The tax relief we passed is working."

The 8.2 percent growth rate from July through September is substantially higher than earlier projections and more than double the 3.3 percent gain in the second quarter. It is the fastest rate of growth in nearly 20 years.

Campaigning in the western state of Nevada, President Bush says he will continue to focus on a pro-growth economic strategy to help more people find jobs.

Democrats hoping to challenge the president in next year's election have portrayed recent economic growth as a jobless recovery because job creation has lagged behind general growth. White House officials say employment levels should rise as the economy continues to grow.

A private report on how Americans are reacting to that news shows consumer confidence in October was the highest of the year as people were encouraged by gradual improvements in the job market.

The economy and the war in Iraq are expected to be the central issues in next year's campaign.