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US economy did not perform as well as previously thought in 2018

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The US economy did not perform as strongly as previously thought in 2018, according to official figures.

US GDP rose by 2.9% in 2018 when comparing total output over the year. However, growth in the 12 months through the fourth quarter of 2018 was revised down to 2.5% from the 3% rate that the commerce department had previously reported.

The revision means that last year’s rate of economic growth missed the country’s target of 3% growth.

The official figures also showed that growth slowed in the second quarter of 2019 as tariffs and weak business investment weighed on the economy.

US GDP grew by 2.1% in the second quarter, down from 3.1% growth in the first quarter.

According to CNBC, second quarter growth beat Dow Jones Q2 estimates of 2%.

Components of the report showed that robust consumer spending helped the economy expand more than expected amid sluggish business investment.

Consumer spending rose at a 4.3% annual rate in the second quarter. Spending on goods rose at the fastest rate since the first quarter of 2006.

According to the US Bureau of Economic Analysis:

“The increase in real GDP in the second quarter reflected positive contributions from personal consumption expenditures (PCE), federal government spending, and state and local government spending that were partly offset by negative contributions from private inventory investment, exports, nonresidential fixed investment and residential fixed investment.”

US Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross commented on the numbers:

“The Trump economy is growing strong and, on the heels of 3.1 percent growth in the first quarter, is poised to continue expanding.

“President Trump’s ambitious agenda of deregulation, tax reform, and job creation is making the U.S. the premier place for business, and is restoring our position as an economic leader on the world stage.”

The data comes ahead of the US Federal Reserve’s upcoming meeting next week in which it is expected to lower interest rates.