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New estimate for 3Q GDP shows highest growth in 3 years

Surges past 3% mark

Gross domestic product increased in the third quarter, continuing its surge of more than 3%, according to the second estimate from the Bureau of Economic Analysis.

Real GDP increased at an annual rate of 3.3% in the third quarter, up from the advanced estimate of 3%. This is now above the second quarter’s growth, which came in at an annual rate of 3.1%.

Today’s GDP estimate is based on more complete source data than was available for the advance estimate issued last month, but will be followed by one final estimate for the third quarter in December.

The chart below shows the last two quarters have seen solid, consistent growth for the first time in a while. The third quarter increase now marks the highest increase since the third quarter of 2014.

Click to Enlarge


(Source: BEA)

The increase in GDP this quarter is due, in part, to positive contributions from personal consumer expenditures, private inventory investment, nonresidential fixed investment, experts and a decrease in imports, which are a subtraction to GDP. However, these were partially offset by a negative impact from the real estate sector – residential fixed investment.

Real gross domestic income increased 2.5% in the third quarter, up from a revised increase of 2.3% in the second quarter. The average of real GDP and real GDI, a supplemental measure a measure of U.S. economic activity that equally weights GDP and GDI, increased 2.9% in the third quarter, up from an increase of 2.7% in the second quarter.

Here are updates to the previous estimate:

Current-dollar GDP: Increased to 5.5%, up from last estimate’s 5.2%

Gross domestic purchases price index: Held steady at 1.8%

Personal consumption expenditures: Held steady at 1.5%

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