US GDP Grew Faster in Q2 Than Forecasted to 1.4%

The U.S. economy grew at a modestly faster pace in the second quarter than previously estimated, but the latest data confirms the expansion decelerated in the first half of the year.

Gross domestic product, a broad measure of goods and services produced across the economy, expanded at an inflation-adjusted 1.4% seasonally adjusted annual rate in the second quarter, the Commerce Department said Thursday. That’s up from last month’s estimate of a 1.1% growth rate during the spring. Economists surveyed by The Wall Street Journal expected revised GDP growth at a 1.3% pace for the April to June period.

U.S. stock markets were slightly lower in premarket trading Thursday.

Second-quarter growth accelerated from the first quarter’s 0.8% pace, but was slower than the roughly 2% annual rate averaged since the recession ended in mid-2009. The current expansion’s pace is the weakest of any since 1949.

Thursday’s report showed a measure of business investment improved rather than declined, accounting for most of the upward revision.

Economic growth has held below a 1.5% pace for three straight quarters. The marked slowdown during an already sluggish expansion raised concerns that the economy was stumbling seven years after the recession ended.

But many economists project output began to accelerate a bit this summer and should return to at least the expansion’s average growth rate during the second half of the year. Similarly, payroll growth improved in recent months after a spring slump.

“Growth was weak in the first half of the year, we’re seeing definite evidence that the economy is now expanding more strongly,” Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen said last week. Improved economic growth and progress in the labor market “have strengthened the case for an increase in the federal funds rate,” she said. The central bank has held its benchmark interest rate steady since December.

via CNBC

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Alfonso Esparza

Alfonso Esparza

Senior Currency Analyst at Market Pulse
Alfonso Esparza specializes in macro forex strategies for North American and major currency pairs. Upon joining OANDA in 2007, Alfonso Esparza established the MarketPulseFX blog and he has since written extensively about central banks and global economic and political trends. Alfonso has also worked as a professional currency trader focused on North America and emerging markets. He has been published by The MarketWatch, Reuters, the Wall Street Journal and The Globe and Mail, and he also appears regularly as a guest commentator on networks including Bloomberg and BNN. He holds a finance degree from the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (ITESM) and an MBA with a specialization on financial engineering and marketing from the University of Toronto.
Alfonso Esparza