The economy of the United States continues to boom, as the nation’s GDP grew by 3.2% in the first quarter of 2019, shattering expectations of 2.5%, and marking the best performance and topping of 3% since 2015.
Best economic growth since 2015
The US GDP for the first quarter of 2019 is the best start to a year since 2015.
Economists polled by Dow Jones had only anticipated growth of 2.5%, and the data released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis showed a 0.7 percent gain over expectations.
Also since 2015, it is the first time America’s GDP has topped 3 percent. The number represents a 2.2 percent gain over the fourth quarter of 2018.
As recent data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics has shown an increase in wages for American workers, it corresponds with this latest data from the Bureau of Economic Analysis what shows for the first quarter of 2019 that disposable personal income increased by 3 percent.
Prices also grew in the first quarter of 2019
Data from the Bureau of Economic Analysis also showed that prices increased by 1.3% (excluding food and energy) in the first quarter of 2019, while overall prices increased by 0.8 percent.
Consumer spending slowed
One of the biggest areas of economic concern is consumer spending, which accounts for 70 percent of all economic activity. Consumer spending dropped by 1.2 percent during the first quarter.
However, this activity is not so unusual. Spending typically declines in the months immediately following the holiday season.
Spending on durable goods also fell, dropping by 5.3 percent. It marks the biggest decline in a decade and was led by a significant decrease in the sales of light trucks.
Other economic movement in the first quarter
US exports increased by 3.7 percent in the first quarter. Imports fell equally by 3.7 percent.