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Thursday, February 28, 2019

BEA: Real GDP increased at 2.6% Annualized Rate in Q4

by Calculated Risk on 2/28/2019 08:35:00 AM

From the BEA: Gross Domestic Product, Fourth Quarter and Annual 2018 (Initial Estimate)

Real gross domestic product (GDP) increased at an annual rate of 2.6 percent in the fourth quarter of 2018, according to the "initial" estimate released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis. In the third quarter, real GDP increased 3.4 percent.

Due to the recent partial government shutdown, this initial report for the fourth quarter and annual GDP for 2018 replaces the release of the "advance" estimate originally scheduled for January 30th and the "second" estimate originally scheduled for February 28th.
The increase in real GDP in the fourth quarter reflected positive contributions from personal consumption expenditures (PCE), nonresidential fixed investment, exports, private inventory investment, and federal government spending. Those were partly offset by negative contributions from residential fixed investment, and state and local government spending. Imports, which are a subtraction in the calculation of GDP, increased.

The deceleration in real GDP growth in the fourth quarter reflected decelerations in private inventory investment, PCE, and federal government spending and a downturn in state and local government spending. These movements were partly offset by an upturn in exports and an acceleration in nonresidential fixed investment. Imports increased less in the fourth quarter than in the third quarter.
emphasis added
The advance Q4 GDP report, with 2.6% annualized growth, was above expectations.

This puts annual GDP growth at 2.9%.

Personal consumption expenditures (PCE) increased at 2.8% annualized rate in Q4, down from 3.5% in Q3.   Residential investment (RI) decreased 3.5% in Q4. Equipment investment increased at a 6.7% annualized rate, and investment in non-residential structures decreased at a 4.2% pace.

I'll have more later ...