US Economic Growth Upwardly Revised To 3.4% In Q4, Jobless Claims Slow: Thursday's Economic Digest (UPDATED)

Zinger Key Points
  • U.S. GDP for Q4 2023 revised up, showing 3.4% growth, down from previous quarter but still robust.
  • Weekly unemployment claims lower than expected, indicating a stable labor market.

Editor’s note: This story has been updated with additional details.

U.S. gross domestic product in the fourth quarter of 2023 was upwardly revised in the third estimate released Thursday, indicating a deceleration compared to the previous quarter but still maintaining a solid pace of growth.

Concurrently, the latest report from the U.S. Labor Department showed a lower-than-expected pace in weekly unemployment benefit claims.

Thursday’s Economic Data: Key Highlights

  • In the final quarter of 2023, U.S. economic activity advanced at a 3.4% annualized pace compared to the previous quarter, above the 3.2% recorded in the second estimate.
  • This growth in the real GDP represents a deceleration from the 4.9% rate recorded in the third quarter of 2023, attributed to decreased private inventory investment, slowdowns in federal government spending and residential fixed investment.
  • The third estimate reflects upward revisions to consumer spending, nonresidential fixed investment and state and local government spending. These gains were partially offset by downward revisions to private inventory investment and exports. Additionally, imports were revised downward.
  • The Personal Consumption Expenditure (PCE) price index was upwardly revised from 1.7% to 1.8% in the third estimate.
  • The growth in the nominal GDP was upwardly revised from 4.9% to 5.1% in the third reading, to a level of $27.96 trillion, higher than the previous $27.94 trillion.
  • Disposable personal income rose by $190.4 billion, or 3.8%, in the fourth quarter, marking a downward revision of $12.1 billion from the previous estimate. Real disposable personal income increased by 2%, reflecting a downward revision of 0.2 percentage points.
  • Initial jobless claims increased by 210,000 in the week ending March 23, down from the previous 212,000, and below the expected 215,000.

Market Reactions

The U.S. dollar index (DXY), as tracked by Invesco DB USD Index Bullish Fund ETF UUP, traded 0.3% higher on Thursday morning following hawkish remarks from Fed’s Governor Christopher J. Waller.

Traders have marginally reduced their expectations for an interest rate cut in June, now suggesting a 64% probability of such an outcome, down from 70% the previous day.

Futures on major U.S. averages traded flat during premarket trading on Thursday. The SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust SPY reached an all-time high close at $523.17 on Wednesday.

Read now: Investors On Edge With Consumer Inflation Data Due Friday, Rate Cut Hopes Hang In The Balance

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