Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Preliminary Q2 GDP

The BEA's preliminary GDP estimate for the second quarter is now out, showing real GDP growth at a 2.9 percent annual rate. According to the BEA:

The increase in real GDP in the second quarter primarily reflected positive contributions from personal consumption expenditures (PCE) for services, private inventory investment, nonresidential structures, exports, and state and local government spending that were partly offset by negative contributions from residential fixed investment and federal government spending. Imports, which are a subtraction in the calculation of GDP, increased.

Nothing surprising there--we are seeing a shift from residential and to nonresidential structures, and both exports and imports are growing.

The preliminary estimate is up 0.4 percent from July's advance estimate of a 2.5 percent rate. Again, according to the BEA:

The upward revision to the percentage change in real GDP primarily reflected upward revisions to exports of goods, to nonresidential structures, to private inventory investment, and to state and local government spending that were partly offset by a downward revision to residential fixed investment.

Hopefully, this will calm some of the fears of recession that emerged over the intervening month. Real growth over the last 4 quarters has been 3.6 percent. The final release is due September 28.

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