GDP and GDI usually match up. Right now they don't : The Indicator from Planet Money Welcome to the Global Growth Gym, where countries are working out their economies. Over in the corner, the U.S. is standing there on a weight scale, just a tad confused...

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When GDP and GDI part ways

When GDP and GDI part ways

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Spencer Platt/Getty Images
People run on treadmills at a New York Sports Club.
Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Ah, the perennial question for countries and gym rats alike: Am I cutting or am I bulking? While that seems like a simple question – really, it can't be that hard to tell if an economy is shrinking or growing – the United States is just tad confused right now.

That's because measures of gross domestic product (GDP) and gross domestic income (GNI) are diverging. While these two macroeconomic variables of economic growth usually match up, the space between them is widening.

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