The U.S. economy will end a sense of free-fall within a few months as government stimulus and rescue efforts take hold and inventory cycles return to normal, White House economic adviser Lawrence Summers said on Thursday.

But Summers, speaking to the Economic Club of Washington, said it was still unclear how quickly and strongly the economy would turn around.

I think the sense of a ball falling off the table -- which is what the economy has felt like since the middle of last fall -- I think we can be reasonably confident that that's going to end within the next few months and you will no longer have that sense of free-fall, Summers said.

(Reporting by David Lawder; Editing by James Dalgleish)