5 Notable and latest trends in the U.S. Economy as of end of March, 2017
Administration focuses on tax reform and trade policies
On Friday President Trump signed a few important executive orders, one requires a broader review of the deficit and the other will lead to review of unfair trade policies such as “dumping” and “pricing”.
As reported in my previous blog there are no major changes to NAFTA however a draft documents suggests tariffs in imports, to support administrations “America First” initiative.
Q4 GDP growth revised upwards to 2.1%
Latest economic reports have revised the real gross domestic product (GDP) up to a annual rate of 2.1% for the fourth quarter of 2016. This is the third estimate by the Commerce Department and the upward trend was driven by personal consumption expenditures.
Improvement in consumer confidence
Various consumer confidence reports highlight a sustained improvement in consumer confidence. Month of March, 2017 shows a sharp increase in consumer confidence as a results of optimism about business growth, personal income and over all economy.
Reduction in trade deficit
Month of February, 2017 shows a nearly 6% drop in U.S. trade deficit, reversing increases from prior months. Deficit with China continues to be the focus of the administration, the executive order signed by President Trump on Friday put’s additional emphasis on this issue.
Personal income up but consumer spending down
U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis in their latest report state that personal income rose by 0.4% however consumer spending was up by 0.1%. Consumer spending has reduced for the second straight month.
The combination of a strong gain in incomes and modest rise in spending pushed the saving rate up to 5.6 percent of after-tax income in February, the highest level since October and up from 5.4 percent in January.
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