United States GDP

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United States: Economic growth accelerates in Q2

July 30, 2015

In the second quarter, GDP expanded at a seasonally adjusted annualized rate (SAAR) of 2.3%, according to an advance estimate released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) on 30 July. The print marked an acceleration over the 0.6% growth recorded in the first quarter, which was revised up from a previously reported 0.2% contraction. Q1’s result slightly undershot market expectations of a 2.6% increase. The acceleration reflects that strengthening private consumption and a recovery in exports offset weakening fixed investment.

On the domestic side, private consumption expanded 2.9% in Q2, which was well above the 1.7% tallied in Q1. Moreover, government spending increased 0.8% after having contracted 0.1% in the previous quarter. In contrast, non-residential fixed investment slumped from a 1.6% increase in Q1 to a 0.6% decline in Q2, which marked the weakest result in more than five years. Residential fixed investment slowed from a 10.1% expansion in Q1 to an increase of 6.6% in Q2.

Exports increased 5.3% in the second quarter (Q1: -6.0% quarter-on-quater SAAR) while imports increased 3.5% (Q1: +7.1% qoq SAAR). Consequently, the external sector’s net contribution to overall growth improved from minus 1.9 percentage points in the first quarter to 0.1 in the second quarter.

The Federal Reserve expects economic growth to range between 1.8% and 2.0% in 2015 and between 2.4% and 2.7% in 2016. FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panelists expect GDP to expand 2.4% in 2015, which is unchanged from last month’s forecast. For 2016, the panel expects the economy to expand 2.7%.

Author:, Economist

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United States GDP Chart

USA GDP Q2 2015

Note: Quarter-on-quarter annualized changes and annual variation of seasonally adjusted GDP in %.
Source: Bureau of Economic Analysis and FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast.

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