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Thursday, April 27, 2017

Final Fed Estimate of Q1-2017 GDP Fell to Only 0.2%

President Trump will not be very happy if the Atlanta Fed's final estimate for the first quarter of US GDP under his watch is correct.

Today the Atlanta Fed announced its last estimate for Q1-2017 GDP before it switches to estimating GDP for Q2-2017 on May 1, 2017 (next Monday).

Latest forecast: 0.2 percent — April 27, 2017 

  • The final GDPNow model forecast for real GDP growth (seasonally adjusted annual rate) in the first quarter of 2017 is 0.2 percent on April 27, down from 0.5 percent on April 18. 
  • The forecast of first-quarter real consumer spending growth fell from 0.3 percent to 0.1 percent after yesterday's annual retail trade revision by the U.S. Census Bureau. 
  • The forecast of the contribution of inventory investment to first-quarter growth declined from -0.76 percentage points to -1.11 percentage points after this morning's advance reports on durable manufacturing and wholesale and retail inventories from the Census Bureau. 
  • The forecast of real equipment investment growth increased from 5.5 percent to 6.6 percent after the durable manufacturing report and the incorporation of previously published data on light truck sales to businesses from the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis.

As you can see from the chart:

  • The Atlanta Fed's estimate was over 3% in early February but has plunged towards zero since then.
  • The "Blue Chip consensus" has estimates for Q1-2017 GDP in the range of 0.9% to 2.1%
The Bureau of Economic Analysis, BEA, will release their first official estimate of Q1 GDP tomorrow, April 28, 2017. (Schedule)

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