Well, here we are.
This is probably the most-anticipated GDP report that’s come along in the three-plus years I’ve been blogging.
Will it or won’t it be negative?
The consensus ahead of the report appears to be (of all things…) positive, though barely:
(A Reuters poll) said gross domestic product, the broadest measure of total economic activity within U.S. borders, likely crept ahead at a slim 0.2 percent annual rate in the first three months this year, down from 0.6 percent growth in the fourth quarter.
The 89 estimates ranged from shrinkage of 0.8 percent to growth of 1.5 percent.
This link at IB Times has an estimate of +0.4%.
The link to the government’s Bureau of Economic Analysis report when published
will be is here.
UPDATE, 8:32 A.M. — and the answer is …… is ….. 0.6%.
It looks like the media’s and the Democratic Party’s (excuse the redundancy) celebration of the recession’s beginning has been delayed for at least one quarter.
In yesterday’s post about record April federal tax collections, I theorized that those much higher than expected collections, coupled with reports that there have been inventory buildups, which are typically not picked up very well in the first of the three GDP reports, provide reasons to believe that the GDP revisions in May and June will be upward. We’ll see.
Don’t get me wrong; the report isn’t impressive, even if it ultimately gets revised upward a bit. But it appears that those salivating for a recession will just have a wait a quarter — and work even harder on breaking down consumer and business confidence in the meantime.
I will hopefully have more later — probably at another post.
UPDATE: Never mind on that. Noel Sheppard at NewsBusters skewers the AP’s Jeannine Aversa (whom yours truly caught writing that “Itâ€™s no longer a question of recession or not. Now itâ€™s how deep and how long” just four weeks ago), so I don’t have to.