The 4th quarter and full year 2015 growth in the U.S. economy or GDP was revised up last week. This was a surprise to most economists. The Bloomberg survey showed the market anticipated a downward revision from the initial estimate of 0.7% to 0.4% for the quarter. The estimate instead was revised up to 1.0% for the quarter bringing the full year 2015 GDP to 2.4%.
Initial reports in January are showing continued growth within the U.S. economy. U.S. manufacturing reported a 3.9% gain in January, the largest gain since mid-2014. The uptick in January may show signs that manufacturing industry is stabilizing after slowing to a two year low at the end of 2014. The U.S. consumer is expected to add to the U.S. economy in the first quarter. Cheaper oil prices and a steady jobs market along with the first signs of wage increases spurred the U.S. consumer to spend more in January.
While the U.S. economy continues to grow, many other countries in the world are slowing. Their central banks are providing accommodations to help keep their economies from slowing further. The challenge for this year is to see if the U.S. consumer and economy can remain resilient in the face of slowing global growth.
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