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Silver Lining for Disappointing GDP data

The second estimate of 2013's Q4 GDP came in at an annualized rate of 2.4%, revised down from the initial estimate of 3.2%. 

2013 saw growth pick up throughout the year, but apparently that momentum was lost in the 4th Quarter. 

(GDP 2008-2014: Source:

An exceprt from the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA):

The increase in real GDP in the fourth quarter primarily reflected positive contributions from PCE, exports, nonresidential fixed investment, and private inventory investment that were partly offset y negative contributions from federal government spending, residential fixed investment, and state and local government spending.  Imports, which are a subtraction in the calculation of GDP, increased.

The deceleration in real GDP growth in the fourth quarter reflected a deceleration in private inventory investment, a larger decrease in federal government spending, and downturns in residential fixed investment and in state and local government spending that were partly offset by accelerations in exports, in PCE, and in nonresidential fixed investment and a deceleration in imports."

No surprise on the government cutbacks.

Slower consumer spending gains, and a housing setback be attributed to the cold weather. We have been blaming the cold all winter. 

Investment and Pent up spending:

The silver lining then is the increase in business investment. For example there was a 10.6% annualized increase in spending on new equipment. 

Another positive is that the cold is seasonal. It will get warmer, and the pent-up spending should make up the slack over the winter.

The markets will be looking for this to materialize when 2014 Q1 GDP is on the docket.