United States GDP stays on track for the third quarter!

United States - Nov 30 2018

While the United States economy slowed in the third quarter as previously reported, the pace is likely still strong enough to keep growth on track to hit the Trump administration’s 3% target this year. “The GDP increased at a 3.5% annualized rate (in line with expectations),” the Commerce Department declared on Wednesday, October 28th in its second estimate of third-quarter GDP growth. That was unchanged from their first estimate and well above the economy’s growth potential, which economists estimate to be about 2%. The economy grew at a 4.2% pace in the second quarter. While businesses accumulated inventory at a faster pace and spent more on equipment than initially thought in the third quarter, that was offset by downward revisions to consumer spending and exports.

3.5%

Growth is being driven by the White House’s 1.5 trillion USD tax cut package, which has given consumer spending a jolt and bolstered business investment. The fiscal stimulus is part of measures adopted by President Donald Trump’s administration to boost annual growth to 3% on a sustainable basis. But dark clouds are gathering over the economic expansion that is now in its ninth year and the second longest on record. Business spending on equipment appears to have weakened early in the fourth quarter and higher interest rates are slowing demand for housing. With oil prices rapidly falling, business spending on equipment is likely to moderate significantly. Lower oil prices tend to hurt investment in the energy sector because of reduced profits. Brent crude oil prices have slumped by more than 30% from a four-year high above 86 USD in early October, pressured by concerns of oversupply amid slowing global economic growth. As a result, it seems difficult to maintain sustainable growth in this way. Fourth-quarter figures could reinforce this assumption…

Julien Moussavi, Head of Economic Research

                                        Sources: Beyond Ratings, Reuters

 

                             

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