US fourth-quarter GDP revised down, Latest Business News - The New Paper

US fourth-quarter GDP revised down

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WASHINGTON: The US economy slowed more than initially thought in the fourth quarter, keeping growth last year below the Trump administration's 3 per cent annual target, and corporate profits failed to rise for the first time in more than two years.

Gross domestic product increased at a 2.2 per cent annualised rate, the Commerce Department said yesterday in its third reading of fourth-quarter GDP growth. That was down from the 2.6 per cent estimated last month.

The economy grew at a 3.4 per cent pace in the third quarter.

The expansion will be the longest on record in July.

The revisions to the fourth-quarter GDP reading reflected markdowns to consumer and business spending, as well as government outlays and investment in homebuilding.

For all of last year, the economy grew 2.9 per cent as previously reported, despite the White House's fiscal stimulus of US$1.5 trillion (S$2 trillion) in tax cuts and more government spending.

Growth last year was the strongest since 2015 and was an acceleration from the 2.2 per cent logged in 2017.

Compared with the fourth quarter of 2017, the economy expanded 3 per cent, revised down from the 3.1 per cent reported last month. Economists polled by Reuters had forecast GDP growth in the fourth quarter being revised down to a 2.4 per cent. - REUTERS