There is one certain thing about economic forecasting; economists will be the last people to realise that there is a recession. Typically, most economists are expecting growth at around 2.5-3.0 percent this year, with some rebound next year.

However, first quarter data is at 1.3 percent, and things aren't getting better during the second quarter. If these forecasters are going to be correct, things are going to have to be very lively in the second half of this year.

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Troubles in the U.S. housing market will weigh on economic growth this year even more than earlier estimated, according to a forecast of economists released on Monday.

Real gross domestic product, the government's broadest measure of economic output, is expected to advance 2.3 percent in 2007. That is down from an earlier estimate in February for 2.8 percent growth, a survey conducted by the National Association for Business Economics found.

The lower forecast came after the government reported anemic 1.3 percent GDP growth during the first three months of this year. "Results for the first portion of the year indicate that the expansion has descended from its cruising altitude," said Carl Tannenbaum, NABE president and chief economist at LaSalle Bank/ABN AMRO in Chicago.

However, growth in 2008 is expected to pick up to 3.1 percent after the housing market bottoms out.The survey of 48 economists taken between April 19 and May 8, found that housing market troubles, particularly those in the risky subprime mortgage lending market, will drag out through this year.