Q2 GDP Growth at 1.7%

Q2 GDP Growth at 1.7%

There's good news and bad news in the latest GDP report, released (link opens as PDF) today by the Commerce Department. Fortunately for investors, the bad news is in the past. While Q1's quarter-to-quarter real Gross Domestic Product growth rate was revised down from 1.8% to 1.1%, the Department's first estimate of Q2 growth clocked in at 1.7%. Analysts had expected a smaller 1.1% rise.

According to the report, the boost stemmed primarily from a 1.8% increase in personal spending, a 4.6% rise in nonresidential fixed investment, and a 5.4% expansion in exports.

Although imports' 9.5% increase and the federal government's 1.5% spending drop both cut into GDP's overall growth rate, this quarter's credits ultimately proved greater than its debits.

On the inflationary front, inflation was up 0.7%, 0.4 percentage points below analysts' estimates, following a 1.3% increase the prior quarter..

The Commerce Department's second estimate for Q2 GDP growth is scheduled to be released on Aug. 29.

Today, the government also released comprehensive revisions that updated the nation's gross domestic product over the past several decades. Those figures showed that the Great Recession wasn't quite as steep as initially estimated and that the recovery has been stronger than earlier thought.

The revisions showed that the economy grew 2.8% in 2012, up from an earlier estimate of 2.2%. Growth in last year's first quarter was revised much higher. And growth in the fourth quarter of 2012 was reduced to an annual rate of just 0.1%.

-- Material from The Associated Press was used in this report.


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