GDP Growth slowed to 0.7 Percent in Fourth Quarter

Real GDP for the fourth quarter grew at an annual rate of 0.7 percent according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis’s advance estimate, down from the third quarter’s growth rate of 2.0 percent. The fourth quarter’s slower growth was due to negative contributions from private inventory, non-residential fixed investment and exports, as well as lower positive contributions from personal consumption expenditures and government.


Consumption was the largest contributor to GDP, accounting for 1.46 percent of growth, down from 2.04 percent during the third quarter. Consumption spending increased by $60.1 billion in the fourth quarter, compared with an $83.5 billion increase in the third quarter.

Net exports were the largest drag on GDP growth, subtracting 0.47 percent from the total. Exports of goods and services fell $13.2 billion, while imports increased by $7.1 billion. Private inventories and private domestic investment also dragged on GDP, subtracting 0.45 percent and 0.41 percent from totals.

Government spending increased during the quarter, contributing 0.12 percent to GDP. The majority of the contribution was due to federal spending, which increased by $7.5 billion.

Read the Census release.