Q4 GDP Third Estimate: Real GDP At 4.3%

The Third Estimate for Q4 GDP, to one decimal, came in at 4.3% (4.32% to two decimal places), a decrease from 33.4% (33.444% to two decimal places) for the Q3 Third Estimate and a slight increase from the Q4 Advance Estimate of 4.0%. Investing.com had a consensus of 4.1%.

Here is the slightly abbreviated opening text from the Bureau of Economic Analysis news release:

Real gross domestic product (GDP) increased at an annual rate of 4.3 percent in the fourth quarter of 2020 (table 1), according to the "third" estimate released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis. In the third quarter, real GDP increased 33.4 percent.

The "third" estimate of GDP released today is based on more complete source data than were available for the "second" estimate issued last month. In the second estimate, the increase in real GDP was 4.1 percent. The upward revision primarily reflected an upward revision to private inventory investment that was partly offset by a downward revision to nonresidential fixed investment (see "Updates to GDP").

The increase in real GDP reflected increases in exports, nonresidential fixed investment, personal consumption expenditures (PCE), residential fixed investment, and private inventory investment, that were partly offset by decreases in state and local government spending as well as federal government spending (reflecting fewer fees paid to administer the Paycheck Protection Program loans). Imports, which are a subtraction in the calculation of GDP, increased (table 2). [Full Release]

Here is a look at Quarterly GDP since Q2 1947. Prior to 1947, GDP was an annual calculation. To be more precise, the chart shows is the annualized percentage change from the preceding quarter in Real (inflation-adjusted) Gross Domestic Product. We've also included recessions, which are determined by the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER). Also illustrated are the 3.17% average (arithmetic mean) and the 10-year moving average, currently at 2.08%.

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