CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- The president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond's best guess is the national economy will continue to grow at a rate of just over 2 percent a year and that the pace will pick up in 2014 and beyond.
Jeffrey Lacker made the prediction at the 19th annual West Virginia Economic Outlook Conference, presented Thursday by West Virginia University's College of Business and Economics at the Civic Center.
Lacker said his prediction is based on four suppositions:
* Meaningful progress is made on federal budget issues;
* Risks posed by the European recession diminish next year;
* Household confidence about future income prospects continues to gradually improve; and
* There are no unanticipated shocks.
"Significant energy price increases would tend to temporarily reduce overall growth, although they ultimately would be likely to stimulate exploration and new production," he said.