Real GDP Up Slightly in New 3Q Estimate

Real GDP increased at an annual rate of 2.1% in 2021 3Q, according to the second estimate released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis.
Real GDP 3Q 2021 second estimate

Real gross domestic product increased at an annual rate of 2.1% in the third quarter of 2021, according to the “second” estimate released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis.

In the second quarter, real GDP increased 6.7%.

The GDP estimate released Wednesday was based on more complete source data than were available for the “advance” estimate issued last month, the BEA said.

In the advance estimate, the increase in real GDP was 2%. The update primarily reflects upward revisions to personal consumption expenditures (PCE) and private inventory investment, the BEA said.

“The increase in third quarter GDP reflected the continued economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic,” the bureau’s report states. “A resurgence of COVID-19 cases resulted in new restrictions and delays in the reopening of establishments in some parts of the country. Government assistance payments in the form of forgivable loans to businesses, grants to state and local governments, and social benefits to households all decreased. The full economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic cannot be quantified in the GDP estimate for the third quarter because the impacts are generally embedded in source data and cannot be separately identified.”

The increase in real GDP in 3Q reflected increases in private inventory investment, PCE, state and local government spending, and nonresidential fixed investment that were partly offset by decreases in residential fixed investment, federal government spending, and exports.

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