Looking back to 3Q 2013

First Trust predicting the 3Q 2013 GDP growth report expected out later this week.  Their predictions:

Consumption:  Auto sales were up at a 5% annual rate in Q3, while “real” (inflation-adjusted) retail  sales ex-autos were up at a 1.4% rate.  But services make up about 2/3 of personal consumption and, on a real basis, they appear to be unchanged.  As a result,  it looks like real personal consumption of goods and services combined, grew at a 1.3% annual rate in Q3,

Business Investment:   Business  equipment  investment shrank at a 1.5% annual rate in Q3 while commercial building expanded at a 10% pace.  Assuming R&D grew at a trend 2.5% rate,  overall  business investment  grew at  a  2.3%  rate.

Home Building:  The housing rebound continued in Q3, growing at about a 6.5% annual rate.

Government:   Military spending  picked up in Q3  and state/local government construction projects  have turned the corner.  On net, we estimate real government purchases grew at a 1% rate in Q3.

Trade and Inventories numbers are only available through August rather than the entire quarter.  Expect further revisions to follow.

They are calling the economy the “Plow Horse” economy, not winning any races but not dying either.

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