US Third-Quarter GDP Trimmed to 4.9%, Jobless Claims Lower than Expected
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US Third-Quarter GDP Trimmed to 4.9%, Jobless Claims Lower than Expected

Stocks opened higher on Thursday on the back of revised Q3 GDP data and soft jobless claims growth.
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The US economy expanded at a revised pace of 4.9% in the third quarter, down from the earlier figure of 5.2%. Simultaneously, jobless claims rose by just 2,000 in the week ended Dec. 16, missing economists’ estimates. US stocks were green at market open and the yield of US treasuries continued to edge lower.

Jobless Claims Growth Below Estimates

According to the Bureau of Economic Analysis, gross domestic product (GDP), the total monetary value of all goods and services, grew at a 4.9% annualized pace in Q3, revised from the previous reading of 5.2%.

But even after the revision, it was still the quickest pace of growth since Q4 2021 for the US economy. Economists projected the expansion pace would remain unchanged at 5.2%. 

After expanding by just 2.1% in Q2, the US economy embarked on a growth trajectory significantly sharper than Federal Reserve officials regard as the non-inflationary expansion rate of about 1.8%. However, its momentum seems to have waned in the year’s final quarter amid softer consumer spending.

Meanwhile, the number of individuals who have filed for unemployment benefits with the government saw a marginal increase last week, pointing to noteworthy underlying strength in the economy as 2023 ends.  

This metric, also known as jobless claims, rose 2,000 to a seasonally adjusted 205,000 for the week that ended on December 16, the Labor Department reported on Thursday. That figure was lower than the consensus estimates of 215,000. 

Although these filings tend to be more volatile during the holiday season, they remain largely in line with a fairly strong labor market, which is expected to help the US economy avoid recession in 2024. 

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Stocks, Bitcoin Rise on New Economic Data; Bond Yields in the Red

GDP and jobless claims data represent important economic indicators, and as such, they tend to trigger a reaction in the capital markets. 

US equities continued their recent uptrend at the market open, with the S&P 500 climbing 0.8% to 4,736, offsetting some of the sharp losses it incurred a day earlier. At the same time, yields on US Treasuries edged lower, with the 10-year and 20-year slipping to 3.83% and 4.14%, respectively. 

Spot gold prices climbed 0.5% to $2,043, while Bitcoin (BTC) advanced 0.4% to $43,834 after briefly crossing the $44,000 mark

What are your expectations concerning the US economy’s growth over the next four quarters? Let us know in the comments below.