Friday, July 27, 2018

GDP hysteria

Earlier in the week the economic calendar at FXStreet had indicated a consensus estimate of GDP at 4% for 2Q2018. With less than an hour to go, that prediction has risen to 4.1%.

GDPNow at The Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta gave it's final prediction of 3.8% yesterday.

Cheerleaders for Trump on talk radio have been crowing like roosters about a booming economy, pointing to the unemployment rate, and they hope to GDP.

GDP consists of four major components: personal consumption, private investment, net imports/exports, and government consumption and investment.

That last one can contribute significantly when there are big increases to government spending, such as just occurred with defense spending.

I expect to see that reflected in this morning's report, but it shouldn't be confused with an economic boom anymore than stimulus spending under Obama.

Government can pay people to dig a hole and other people to fill it back in again, but that is not an economic boom. Neither is a fireworks display.