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Second Estimate: GDP Increases at 2.6% in 4Q

Real gross domestic product – the output of goods and services produced by labor and property located in the United States – increased at an annual rate of 2.8 percent in the fourth quarter of 2010, (that is, from the third quarter to the fourth quarter), according to the second estimate released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis. In the third quarter, real GDP increased 2.6 percent.

Real GDP increased 2.8 percent in 2010 (that is, from the 2009 annual level to the 2010 annual level), in contrast to a decrease of 2.6 percent in 2009.

The GDP second estimate is based on more complete source data than were available for the advance estimate issued last month. In the advance estimate, the increase in real GDP was 3.2 percent.

The increase in real GDP in the fourth quarter primarily reflected positive contributions from personal consumption expenditures (PCE), exports, and nonresidential fixed investment that were partly offset by negative contributions from private inventory investment and state and local government spending. Imports, which are a subtraction in the calculation of GDP, decreased.

The small fourth-quarter acceleration in real GDP primarily reflected a sharp downturn in imports, an acceleration in PCE, an upturn in residential fixed investment, and an acceleration in exports that were mostly offset by downturns in private inventory investment and in federal government spending, a deceleration in nonresidential fixed investment, and a downturn in state and local government spending.

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