What a difference a year makes.
This time 12 months ago, all the talk was of how the UK was flirting with a triple-dip recession. Now forecasters are competing to see who can be most bullish about the prospects for UK growth.
So step forward Capital Economics, the outfit run by the former uber-bear Roger Bootle. CE today revised up their 2014 forecast for growth from 2.5% to 3% and suggested that Britain could be the "leader of the pack" among the leading G7 industrialised nations.
Capital's optimism seems warranted. Just consider. The Bank of England has kept interest rates at 0.5% for the past five years. That's unprecedented.
When the economy was flat-lining, George Osborne could have intensified austerity in an attempt to hit his deficit reduction targets but decided to play it long instead. That was sensible. Incentives have been provided to encourage people to take out mortgages. Bingo.
The key question now is not whether the economy will grow in 2014, because it most certainly will.
At some point in 2014, the UK will emerge from the slowest recovery from recession on record and manage what has already been achieved in the US, Germany and Canada – to return national output to its level before the great recession of 2008-09.
The story for 2014, though, will be whether the recovery is sustainable. There are economists who say the UK is in a sweet spot where growth is strong, inflation is low and there is masses of spare capacity to be used up before the economy is at risk of overheating.
At the other end of the spectrum, there are those who believe the recession caused lasting damage to the economy's supply capacity and expect growth to result rapidly in rising inflationary pressures.
In the song by the Shangri-Las, the Leader of the Pack came to a sticky end.
For the UK to avoid the same fate, it will need the "right sort of growth", which means rising business investment and rising exports.
The "wrong sort" of growth would involve consumers using their homes as cashpoints and running down savings to fund spending. Watch the trade figures closely for signs of danger.
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