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Then Trump wearing a miners hard hat a rally in Charleston, W.Va. Photo: Steve Helber / AP

The U.S. economy grew faster than expected at a healthy 3% rate in the July-September quarter, per AP, despite political uncertainty and the impact of Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria. The 3% GDP figure came in above the estimated forecast of 2.6% and followed 3.1% growth in Q2.

Why it matters: The 3% sustained growth rate in both Q2 and Q3 signals that the economy is growing at a more robust pace than it has in more than two years. But economist Justin Wolfers points out that the "persistent part of growth — final sales to private domestic purchasers" grew at only 2.2%, and warned that advance numbers like today are often revised.

Go deeper

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Health: Coronavirus cases rose 10% in the week before Thanksgiving.
  2. Politics: Supreme Court backs religious groups on New York coronavirus restrictions.
  3. World: Expert says COVID vaccine likely won't be available in Africa until Q2 of 2021 — Europeans extend lockdowns.
  4. Economy: The winners and losers of the COVID holiday season.
  5. Education: National standardized tests delayed until 2022.
4 hours ago - Health

Standardized testing becomes another pandemic victim

Photo: Edmund D. Fountain for The Washington Post via Getty

National standardized reading and math tests have been pushed from next year to 2022, the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) announced Wednesday.

Why it matters: There’s mounting national evidence that students are suffering major setbacks this year, with a surge in the number of failing grades.

4 hours ago - World

European countries extend lockdowns

A medical worker takes a COVID-19 throat swab sample at the Berlin-Brandenburg Airport. Photo by Maja Hitij via Getty

Recent spikes in COVID-19 infections across Europe have led authorities to extend restrictions ahead of the holiday season.

Why it matters: "Relaxing too fast and too much is a risk for a third wave after Christmas," said European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen.