Archive Page 5

Real Consumer Spending Falls in January

Personal income increased 0.4 percent in January after increasing 0.3 percent in pce-chart-march-1December. Wages and salaries, the largest component of personal income, increased 0.4 percent in January, the same increase as in December.

Current-dollar disposable personal income (DPI), after-tax income, increased 0.3 percent in January, the same increase as in December.

Real DPI, income adjusted for taxes and inflation, decreased 0.2 percent in January after increasing 0.1 percent in December.

Real consumer spending (PCE), spending adjusted for price changes, decreased 0.3 percent in January after increasing 0.3 percent in December. Spending on durable goods decreased 0.8 percent in January after increasing 1.8 percent in December.

PCE prices increased 0.4 percent in January after increasing 0.2 percent in December. Excluding food and energy, PCE prices increased 0.3 percent in January after increasing 0.1 percent in December.

Personal saving rate
Personal saving as a percent of DPI was 5.5 percent in January and 5.4 percent in December.

For more information, read the full report.

real-dpi-march-1

GDP Increases in Fourth Quarter

Real gross domestic product (GDP) increased 1.9 percent in the fourth quarter of 2016, according to the “second” estimate released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis. In the third quarter, real GDP increased 3.5 percent.

q2q-gdp-feb-28Fourth‐quarter GDP highlights
The increase in real GDP reflected an increase in consumer spending, private inventory investment, residential investment, business investment, and state and local government spending. These contributions were partly offset by declines in exports and federal government spending. Imports, which are a subtraction in the calculation of GDP, increased.

Revisions
Real GDP was unrevised for the quarter. Notable underlying revisions include:

  • An upward revision in consumer spending, both in services and goods;
  • A downward revision to business investment, mostly in intellectual property products and equipment;
  • A downward revision to state and local government spending, primarily in structures.

Prices
Prices of goods and services purchased by U.S. residents increased 1.9 percent in the fourth quarter after increasing 1.5 percent in the third quarter. Excluding energy and food, prices rose 1.5 percent after increasing 1.7 percent.

Annual GDP growth annual-growth-real-gdp-feb-28
For the year 2016, real GDP increased 1.6 percent, compared with 2.6 percent in 2015.        The increase in real GDP in 2016 reflected increases in consumer spending, residential investment, state and local government spending, exports, and federal government spending.   These contributions were partly offset by declines in private inventory investment and business investment. Imports increased.

For more information, read the full report.

Services Data Coming Faster to GDP

BEA and the Census Bureau are taking another big step this month in their joint quest to get more data into earlier estimates of gross domestic product.

The Census Bureau will begin releasing an early snapshot of its service sector data each quarter, in time for BEA’s second estimate of quarterly GDP.

The new information will be included in BEA statistics beginning Feb. 28 ─ the second estimate of GDP for the fourth quarter and the year of 2016.

Seeking source data faster is one way BEA works to continually improve its estimates of GDP, the preeminent measure of the ever-changing U.S. economy. The Census Bureau is the biggest contributor of data for GDP.

During the three months following the end of each quarter, economic data flows into BEA from many sources. BEA’s economists calculate quarterly GDP three times over this period, with each estimate including more complete information than the last. Previously, they had to wait until the third estimate to include the types of services data now destined for second estimates.

BEA expects the earlier data to reduce revisions between second and third estimates by about 0.1 to 0.2 percentage point on average.

GDP estimates also benefited in 2015 when the Census Bureau began providing faster data on international trade in goods. Last year, Census started releasing data earlier on wholesale and retail trade inventories, another boon for GDP calculations.

Census plans to release its first Advance Quarterly Services Report on Feb. 17. It will serve as a preview of Census’ more detailed services report, which already is a major data source for BEA’s third estimates of GDP.

Advance Quarterly Services Reports, to be published about 50 days after the end of each quarter, will offer a snapshot of revenue for selected sectors, subsectors and industries. They will enhance GDP estimates by providing earlier data on personal consumption expenditures for services and also on private fixed investment in software.

The full Quarterly Services Report will follow three weeks later on March 9. It will feed into BEA’s third estimate of GDP, coming March 30.


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