WASHINGTON (AP) – Economists are expecting a rebound in economic growth in the second three months of the year, after today’s report showing that growth slowed to an annual rate of just 0.1 percent in the first quarter.
They say most of the factors that held back growth in the first quarter have begun to reverse. Investment strategist Dan Greenhaus at the global financial services firm BTIG says there are indications that “the quarter ended better than it began.”
Several sectors — from retail sales to manufacturing output — rebounded in March.
The slowdown in the first quarter came as a harsh winter took its toll on business activity. Residential construction fell at a 5.7 percent annual rate. Businesses slowed their rebuilding of inventory. Meanwhile, a widening of the trade deficit, thanks to a sharp fall in exports, shaved growth by eight-tenths of a point.
Analysts expect stronger growth to continue through the rest of the year, as the economy gets help from improved job growth, rising consumer spending and a rebound in business investment.
Category: National News