GDP report: US economy is expanding

The economy may be growing at a faster rate than initially thought, with the real GDP expanding at  an annualized rate of 3 percent from the third quarter of 2011.

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    This chart shows the annual change in the size of the annual gross domestic product since 1999. The GDP is expanding at a faster rate than previously predicted, 3 percent since the third quarter of 2011.
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Today, the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) released their third "estimate" of the Q4 2011 GDP report showing that the economy continued to expand at a faster pace than initially estimated with real GDP increasing at an annualized rate of 3.0% from Q3 2011.

On a year-over-year basis real GDP increased 1.61% while the quarter-to-quarter non-annualized percent change was 0.73%.

The latest quarterly results indicate that the most notable source of weakness in the economy came from government defense spending which declined at a rate of 12.1% from Q3 while change in private nonfarm inventories made notable contributions accounting for 1.81% of the percent change of final real GDP while providing the majority of the 22.1% quarter-to-quarter rate of change for the entire Gross Private Domestic Investment category. 

That very same category also saw fixed residential investment expand at a rate of 11.6% while fixed non-residential structures declined at a rate of 0.9% over the same period.

Keep in mind that these results are likely very poorly estimated and are sure to be revised notably in following quarters and even years to come.

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