Friday, January 27, 2012

Q4 GDP: Back to Average

GDP grew at a 2.8% annual rate in the last quarter of 2011, according to the "advance" estimate the BEA released today.  That can be taken as good news as it represents improvement over the first part of the year (growth rates of 0.4%, 1.3% and 1.8% in the first three quarters).  But 2.8% is just the average growth rate over the past 40 years, so its not fast enough to significantly close the gaps in output and employment left by the recession.
The advance estimate puts growth for the full year at 1.7%.  We'll get the revised "second" estimate on Feb. 29.

For more, see Wonkbook's Brad Plumer, Calculated Risk, NYT's Catherine Rampell.

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