Friday, August 27, 2010

Lento assai

That is, even more slowly than lento (slowly)...

The BEA's second estimate revised the growth rate of real GDP in the second (April-June) quarter to 1.6%, down from the previous 2.4% "advance" estimate, and slower than the 3.7% growth rate in the first quarter.While still positive - i.e., consistent with a "recovery" - that growth rate isn't fast enough to keep unemployment from rising over time, i.e., its not recovery that feels like a recovery.

The less-bad news is that much of the downward revision came from two sources:
  • Inventory "investment" was revised down, which means that businesses haven't accumulated as much stock as previously thought, so they would need to produce more to meet a given level of demand going forward.
  • A revision upwards in imports. People are buying stuff: consumption spending was actually revised upwards slightly, but more of it was on foreign-made goods than previously thought.
Calculated risk has a nice table comparing the advance to the second estimate. The third estimate is due September 30.

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